What Do You Really Need to Pack in Your Hospital Bag?

As a doula and a member of MANY moms groups (I have my own too! You can join it if that’s your thing…), I am either asked or see the question:

What do I need to pack in my hospital bag?

Well, as an individual who has spent quite a bit of time in many of the hospitals in Kansas City, I can give you some insider information to answer that question! And I can tell you what you don’t need to pack as well. Most hospital are basically the same in what they provide and what you should bring, but just to be safe, when in doubt ask at your hospital tour!

Going to a hospital is like going on a vacation - alright alright, there are a lot of ways that it’s NOT AT ALL like a vacation, but stay with me. The hospital will provide you with a lot of very necessary things that you don’t need to worry about packing. You don’t need to worry about packing diapers for your baby or pads (actually, the nurses will probably encourage you to take as much of these things home with you as you can!). You really don’t even have to worry about packing underwear because those mesh hospital undies are, in fact, A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. If that doesn’t sound vacation-y, I don’t know what does! (Oh, ummm how long has it been since I’ve taken a vacation? Since you worded like that, maybe don’t take vacation advise from me.)

hospital bag checklist

Obviously things like makeup is optional, but if you are planning on having a Fresh 48 done in the hospital, then having a few basics like concealer and mascara is actually pretty nice.

Now, let me tell you about the tennis ball. If this isn’t your first rodeo (maybe your second rodeo?) then you might know that counter pressure during labor is pretty great. But for the person doing the counter pressure - unless they have someone to switch off with, like a doula or other family member - counter pressure can be pretty hard on the wrists. A tennis ball helps with that! If you forget to pack the tennis ball, or your dog steals it right before heading to the hospital, don’t sweat it! Check out this blog for some birth hacks and what you can use instead.

Notice that I have essential oils on the list… So I would read up on which essential oils are safe and beneficial to use and which ones should be avoided! Lisa Mitchell of Mitchell Apothecary wrote this for me and she also does consults to help guide people in safe usage.

Everything else is pretty straightforward, but having a hard copy to check off is pretty helpful! Soooo….

Here is a download-able checklist for you, complete with a few extra spaces to add anything else you might need!

What would you add to your list?