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PLAYING: Your hospital bag checklist

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Your hospital bag checklist

Not sure what to pack in your hospital bag? We have put together a simple hospital bag checklist with all the essentials. Check with your hospital or birthing centre first as many have policies on what you can bring from home. If there was ever a time to be prepared, giving birth to a new human is it.

3 mins to read Jan 1, 2024
  • Pack a cozy robe and slippers, flip flops, or comfy shoes – these are ideal for wandering the ward or trips to the restroom.
  • Pack comfortable, loose maternity clothing. Take some spares in case things get messy or you have to stay in the hospital longer than expected.
  • Pack a towel or two as it might be nice to have your own from home.
  • Pack nighties or open shirts that give easy access to baby, for skin-to-skin contact and breastfeeding.
  • Pack your own maxi pads or disposable underwear. You will likely be provided with some; however, some women have a lot of bleeding after birth—vaginal or C-section – and you’ll need some for the trip home.
  • Pack a few pairs of roomy underwear. High-waisted and cotton will be comfiest.
  • Pack a couple of nursing bras and some nursing pads. For more Breastfeeding essentials, see our checklist
  • Find out about breastfeeding support services that will be offered after your delivery in case you don’t get the hang of breastfeeding straightaway.
  • Pack healthy snacks and beverages for you and your birth partner.
  • Pack comfy going-home clothes. And an extra bag for dirty laundry.
  • Pack miniature toiletries, face wipes, lip balm, hairbands, dry shampoo, washcloths, and a toothbrush.
  • Pack some makeup, if it will help you to feel refreshed after delivery.
  • Pack any tools that may help you sleep, like an eye mask and ear plugs or headphones.
  • Don’t forget your phone and camera. To tell all your friends and family the good news and capture those precious first moments together.
  • Pack an extra-long charger cable or a power bank, in case the sockets are far away.
  • Consider music and prepare a playlist.
  • Consider books and magazines or even movies downloaded to your phone, to keep you occupied during down-time.
  • Pack a notebook and pen. Helpful for jotting down feeding times and any instructions from your healthcare providers.
  • Don’t forget your birth plan and medical information. This is when it’ll really come in handy.
  • Pack a few baby outfits (2-3 onesies and 2-3 sleepers depending on the season), socks, booties, hat, a baby blanket, consider an insulated car seat cover if it’s winter or cool weather, swaddling or receiving blanket, a small package of diapers, baby wipes, cotton balls, burping cloths, and scratch mitts.
  • Bring an infant car seat for the trip home from the hospital. It is mandatory and a nurse will check to ensure the car seat is not expired and safe for use in Canada.
  • Buy a big hospital bag to put all this in!
  • With your “go-bag” on standby, you’ll need to know when you’ve gone into labour. Go to our Signs of Labour Checklist to find out.

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