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Hospital Bag Checklist for Labor and Delivery

Updated on December 16, 2013

Maternity Hospital Bag Checklist

Here you will find a detailed hospital bag checklist for labor and delivery. Use this maternity hospital bag checklist to ensure you have everything you need when you go to the hospital to have your baby.

I've had three babies and I clearly remember how anxious and confused I was about packing my hospital bag for my first trip to labor and delivery. This is an exciting time for you. Relax and don't fret over what should go in your hospital bag. Use my hospital bag checklist for labor and delivery and you will have everything you need during your hospital stay. For your convenience, I created two separate lists. One is items that you will need during your stay at labor and delivery the other list contains items that your baby will need.

If you have any questions about this hospital bag checklist of labor and delivery, feel free to post them in the guestbook at the bottom of this page and I will answer them in a timely manner.

Image credit: Flickr

Photo of My Son Just After Delivery
Photo of My Son Just After Delivery

Preparing for Your Stay at Labor and Delivery

Preparing for your hospital stay when having a baby

When I was pregnant with my first baby, I was clueless about what it was like to care for a newborn. I am the youngest in my family. I never baby sat as a teen. I had a ton of questions, but I was too embarrassed to ask because I felt like it was stuff I was expected to know as an expecting mom. I was fortunate enough to meet a neighbor with two little ones when I was in my third trimester. She was very generous with all of her mommy knowledge. And the icing on the cake? She was a nurse, so she really had a lot of wisdom to share.

I remember asking her all sorts of questions about what I should pack for the hospital. Looking back, I now realize how silly I must have sounded. One of my questions was what baby toys should I take because I was concerned I would bore my newborn baby. Of course, now I know newborns don't play with toys and rattles, but I certainly didn't know that at the time.

I created this page to help other soon to be moms prepare for their precious baby's arrival. The hospital bag checklist for labor and delivery that I share here includes everything you and your baby need for a pleasant and comfortable delivery and hospital stay. I've included every detail that a very inexperienced and clueless mom, such as I was, needs to know.

Image: Photo of my second baby.

Maternity Hospital Bag Checklist

When packing your hospital bag for labor and delivery, you will need items for you and items for your baby. You may choose to pack 2 separate smaller bags or one large bag with everything. With my first two deliveries I packed 1 bag for baby and 1 bag for myself. With my last delivery, I packed one suitcase for us both, putting my items on one side and my baby's on the other. Both methods worked fine, but carrying 2 separate bags helped my husband find things easier when I needed his help.

Hospital Bag Checklist for Labor and Delivery: Items for Mom - Maternity hospital bag checklist

First on this hospital checklist, I've included items for you. There are things you will want during and after labor to help keep you comfortable. You will be staying at least one night, so you don't want to forget toiletries and a change of clothes. After all of the items for you, I've listed the items that you will need for your baby.

  1. Toothbrush, paste, and mouthwash - You will not be able to eat or drink during labor. Your mouth will start to feel dry and yuck. You will really get to appreciate being able to swish out your mouth with mouthwash.
  2. Lip balm - Again, without being able to drink your lips will get super dry. You will really love having lip balm on hand.
  3. Soap and deodorant - You will be taking a shower while at the hospital. She sure to bring your favorite soap and deodorant.
  4. Shampoo, conditioner, styling product, comb, and hair dryer - Even though your stay is brief, most women choose to wash their hair after delivery.
  5. Tissue - The hospital provides a box of tissue, but it feels like scratchy notebook paper. Bring a box of name brand tissue from home.
  6. Nightgown, robe, and slippers - If you plan to nurse, be sure to bring a gown that is easy to nurse in. You need a robe and slippers so you can walk the halls when trying to get labor to progress and just after delivery without needing to get dressed.
  7. Socks - Many women complain that their feet get cold during labor.
  8. Clothes and underwear to wear home - Be sure to bring something comfortable that fit when you were 6 months pregnant because that's about the size you'll be just after delivery.
  9. Focal point - Something fun or pretty to look at during labor.
  10. Boppy - If you plan to breastfeed then I highly recommend you take a Boppy to the hospital.
  11. Camera - Don't forget to keep your batteries charged during your third trimester.
  12. Cell phone charger - You will want to keep in touch with friends and family.
  13. Magazines or a good book - Newborns sleep a lot. Be sure to bring some quiet entertainment.

Maternity Hospital Checklist Items - I recommend...

Hospital Bag Checklist for Labor and Delivery: Items for Baby - Baby bag hospital checklist

One thing to note is that the hospital will provide diapers, wipes, hair brush, digital thermometer, receiving blankets, and short sleeve t-shirts for your baby. Newborns are cold since their bodies have not yet learned how to regulate their temperature, so I always brought soft gowns or pajamas for my babies.

  1. Pajamas or gowns - The little thin short sleeve t-shirts the hospital provides just isn't enough clothing for your precious newborn baby. Bring either infant gowns (great for the warmer months) or footed coveralls (great for the cooler months). Be sure you get items that either clip on or have snaps. Not only can you catch their tender skin in a zipper, but the zipper tends to bunch up and poke them in the face. Bring 4 for each day you'll be there. Newborns tend to spit up and have leaky poops.
  2. Pacifiers - If you plan to use a pacifier, then bring them to the hospital. Every baby seems to want a different type of paci, so bring several brands with you.
  3. Outfit for pictures - Most hospitals will take a newborn picture of your baby. Be sure to bring a cute outfit. Also, bring a matching blanket to lay your baby on so you don't have to use the hospital's unattractive backdrop.
  4. Infant carseat - The hospital will not let you leave with your baby without first making sure you have an appropriate carseat for your little one.
  5. Newborn mittens - These keep your baby from accidentally scratching himself.
  6. Socks, booties, and caps - Newborns cannot regulate their body heat. Even in the hot summer months, a brand new baby needs to keep his feet and head covered until his body temperature regulates.

Did You Find this Hospital Bag Checklist for Labor and Delivery Helpful? - Thank you for visiting

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    • Zeross4 profile image

      Renee Dixon 3 years ago from Kentucky

      Love your list, and I want the owl boppy pillow slipcover! I made a newborn essentials checklist, and suggested your lens in the side as it would also be very helpful!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Good list! I have a few other suggestions I'd add listed on my blog (I'm a birth doula). http://thebirthofadoula.blogspot.com/2010/09/pack-...