Gifts Ideas for a New Mom In the Hospital
What to Get?
It can be difficult to think of great gift ideas for new parents, and even harder to come up with something to bring a new mom in the hospital. It needs to be something she can either use up immediately or is easily mobile so she isn’t burdened when packing up to go home.
Keep in mind the recipient's dietary needs and restrictions. If you’re not sure, avoid anything with peanuts, lactose and gluten.
Hospital food is hit-or-miss in flavour and quantity. Anything healthy that a new mother can snack on between meals will be a big help to keep her strength up. Avoid any foods that need to be refrigerated and focus on things that can be kept at the bedside. Good food ideas include:
- Snack bars;
- Fruit rolls;
- Dried or candied fruit;
- Trail mix;
- Cheese and cracker snack packs;
- Caramel popcorn;
- Powerade or Gatorade;
- Meal replacement drinks or bars.
Special treats like mini chocolate bars and gummies are great for a quick pick-me-up boost. In case the new mommy doesn’t get a chance to brush her teeth, a few packs of gum would also come in handy.
Self Care Items
The key to these gifts is keeping them small so the new mommy isn’t having to make multiple trips to the car for the ride home. Something that can fit in her purse, diaper bag or bedside table is much more useful than a big gift box of lotions and gels. This can include:
- A small tin of hand cream;
- Travel-sized body lotion;
- Sanitizing gel;
- Fuzzy slippers.
The new mommy may also want something to help keep the hair out of her face, so a cloth headband, elastics or hair clips might be appreciated.
Even though the new mom needs plenty of rest, there are times when she might not be able to sleep and needs to keep her mind occupied. Some sanity saving gifts are:
- Puzzle books;
- Handheld video games;
- Travel-sized games;
- Pre-loaded MP3 players with audio books, videos and music.
If you know the new mom has a portable DVD player or laptop with her, a flashstick with funny videos is another welcome gift idea.
Gifts to Avoid
Balloons: While it may seem like a good idea to bring some cheery and colourful balloons to a new mother, sensitivity to latex is a common concern. If you can find latex-free balloons, then this option is acceptable.
Fragrances: Most hospitals have become fragrance-free zones and it is especially important for new mom’s who may be hyper-sensitive after delivery and newborns who aren’t used to all the new scents. Avoid creams and lotions with strong fragrances.
Fruits and Perishable Foods: Although new moms need a lot of fruit in their diets, it’s a hassle to keep things in the hospital refrigerator. The new mom may be too tired or shy to trek all the way to the fridge to get what she needs and hospital staff are too busy. Save these items for when the new mom is already home.
© 2012 Rosa Marchisella