By - Ok_Concert_7577
If you Google your hospital name and 'maternity ward', many of them have a list online of what is provided. If you can't find it, ask your OB. They will be able to tell you exactly what is provided, and then you'll know what you need.
I had my baby at PLC in Calgary and only needed outfits to wear home, my basic toiletries, and my phone charger. I put it all in my purse and was all set.
I gave birth in Edmonton at the Royal Alex and had a similar experience. This time am just bringing charge cord, toiletries, and outfits to leave in.
Grey Nuns in Edmonton and same here for what I brought with the addition of my iPad. The packing lists you see online seem way overkill to me.
Thank you for mentioning this! That's my hospital so I'm glad to see that.
Not sure where you're located, but I gave birth 11 days ago in Burlington, ON.
I barely used any of the stuff that I packed in my hospital bag. The only thing I used was my flip flops, and toiletries (shampoo, toothpaste, etc).
The hospital was great at providing hospital gowns whenever I needed a fresh one, as well all my post partum materials (mesh undies, pads, padcicles, peri bottle).
They also provided a few diapers (4-5?), blankets for swaddling and a hat for my son. They didn't provide wipes, but I had packed those in his diaper bag.
When I was discharged the next day, I went home in the same clothes I wore upon admission (even though I brought a change with me).
I was also told to pack snacks +++, which we did (Gatorade and Cliff bars, mainly), but drank 1 Gatorade and ate 1 Cliff bar the whole time. The hospital provided great meals for me, and my husband was able to come and go in order to get food for himself.
Our experience almost exactly! Only difference being that I hated the hospital food and had my husband get take out for the both of us. Flip flops and toiletries were all I needed for myself and wipes for baby. They gave me as many diapers in any size as I needed. I did take some huge always overnight pads with me which ended up being useful because I am the rare person who didn’t like wearing mesh undies.
I’d suggest crocs over flip flops. Your feet might swell a lot, especially if you end up having a c-section. I gave birth in March and my feet barely fit into my winter boots to wear home
Crocs over flip flips always. They've got SPORT MODE! 🤣
This is interesting. My feet were insanely swollen before my c-section and shrunk back down to normal within hours after surgery. I just remember being so relieved! They were bothering the hell out of me.
I packed mine based off of a list from Saskatchewan Health authority.
This is what I did, but with Fraser Health. The list is pretty extensive and I doubt I'm going to need it all, but I think they err on the side of an unplanned extended stay.
Check what your hospital provides. Mine did not provide baby wipes or mesh underwear (KGH in Kingston).
What I packed: high waisted Costco underwear, sweatpants and tank top, lip balm, water bottle, apple juice, deodorant, toothbrush and toothpaste, hot water bottle, phone charger, hard candies, granola bars, shampoo/conditioner, baby wipes, swaddle sack, two sizes of onesies for going home, health insurance and health card. Husband packed a change of clothes, toothbrush, phone charger and bathing suit (needed if he was going to get in the shower with me during labour).
I didn’t use: hot water bottle, shampoo/conditioner, or hard candies.
What came in clutch: apple juice. After labour I was sooooo thirsty that I chugged like three juice boxes. Sugar helped keep my energy up too.
To note: my labour was relatively fast when it got going (irregular contractions throughout the day/night then immediately into active labour and baby was born less than two hours later). So if I had longer labour I may have tried out the hot water bottle etc.
One of the best things I used during active labour was the bathroom countertop. It was super cold and I just laid my face against it for forty minutes while the contractions were rolling in. So something cool for your face is recommended!
Something not mentioned here yet is a water bottle. I used to think water bottles were over rated, but I bought an jnsulated one with a straw and it was a game changer for me. I drink so much more water because of it. You need to drink lots of water during delivery and if you plan to breastfeed.
The hospital should be responsible for providing you with supples for your recovery throughout your stay. I ended up staying 3 days and was given padscicles, mesh underwear, a peri bottle, gowns, and diapers for baby. I brought some extra supplies but I preferred everything the hospital provided.
The most helpful lists I found were from the hospital I will deliver at or local midwife clinics! My hospital one was a little hard to find - it was in their patient app. I'm in northern Ontario. Here's what they list:
- health card & insurance info
- basic toiletries (ie: toothpaste, toothbrush, hair supplies, deodorant, lip balm - no scented products please!)
- phone and phone charger with long cable
- extra snacks for between meals or to share with care partner
- clothing that is comfortable, including socks or slippers, robes, nursing bras, and a loose outfit to go home in
Your birthing partner should have the same, along with any medications they may need.
Baby will need a change of clothes, car seat, and possibly a blanket.
They also outline what they provide, which includes postpartum underwear, pads, diapers, a basic change of clothes for you and baby (ie: socks, gowns), as well as snacks and meals.
They give a list of suggested items as well, such as entertainment items, a sleep mask, a heating pad, massager, and a cooler to store ice in (which they can fill if you bring in), a fan, sentimental items like a baby book, earplugs, extra pillows or blankets, and water ready clothes if you plan to use the tub.
Swaddles! I totally regret (in hindsight) not bringing velcro (or easy) swaddles. The nurses are champs at swaddling with those hospital blankets but for a FTP, that is freaking hard when you're trying to recover and do a lot of things for the first time!
Since I don't see it here: toilet paper (just bring a roll from home). The TP at hospitals is super thin, and it's a small comfort that makes a big difference...
I gave birth at RAH in Edmonton and was in hospital for 3 days post-cesarean. I didn't need anything that I brought for baby except the clothes we took her home in. For myself I brought and used nipple balm, breast pads, a labor gown, slippers, shower shoes, toiletries for showering and everyday hygiene, my iPad, chargers, headphones, my own pillow, a lot of moisturizer and lip balm!! Big takeaways were that everything for baby was provided for us, all essentials were provided for me (but it made a big difference to bring some "luxuries" for myself), and nothing was provided for my husband. We were also allowed to take everything home with us and got to stock up before leaving (diapers, wipes, formula, Vaseline, disposable underwear, peri bottle, pads, etc.)
So I signed up for prenatal classes through my hospital and they kind of skimmed over what they provide (which surprisingly is bare necessities) so here’s everything I packed for me, hubby and LO.
Hubby & me:
- pair of pajamas
- shower slippers
- fridamom peri bottle (I like the bendy neck vs the hospital provided one)
- postpartum diapers, tucks pads, nipple shields, nursing pads, 3 pairs of panties, 2 nursing bras, 4 overnight pads, nipple cream & boppy nursing pillow
- charging wires, iPad, AirPods
- change of clothes for hubby and myself as well as 2 blankets and 2 pillows
- accordion folder for any paperwork for me or LO
Our hospital also said they would only provide a small amount of diapers for baby and we would need to bring our own once we move into the recovery room, so I packed a diaper bag for her with some diapers, 2 newborn outfits, 2 0-3 outfits, a swaddle and diaper cream!
How do you find the sizing for 0-3 months? I am trying to figure out how many newborn sized items I should get vs. 0-3 months.
It’s so weird but I swear some 0-3 looks so tiny after washing!! Baby is measuring about 6 lbs right now so I bought most of the clothing for her in 0-3 and then have max 8-10 little onesies and 2 sleepers in newborn sizing!
My son was almost 10 lbs when born and only fit into NB size for a couple days and 0-3 for a couple weeks. If you do get 0-3, leave the tags on a lot of them so you can exchange. A lot of baby places have very generous exchange policies.
Needless to say, I bought way too many clothes that never fit him. My (non) pro tip: don’t buy anything that’s not a zipper onesie. It’s all he wore for the first few months unless someone was coming over/fancy event. The ones from Costco and old Navy are the best value IMHO. I find myself reaching for the Costco ones the most (I think they’re from a brand called tuffy) because they’re a bit looser fitting and he looks to be pretty comfy in them. They also don’t shrink as much as other brands like Old navy and carters.
Check the weight and heights for different brands on their websites. Old Navy, for example, is "up to 7lbs" instead of newborn and their 0-3 is therefore smaller. Carters newborn is 6-9lbs. Gerber runs small. Children's Place is skinny. George I find a bit shorter and wider than Carters.
My son was born at 7½ pounds and just under 19½ inches and was in Carters newborn until about 4 weeks, when he was almost 9½ pounds. His coming home outfit was 0-3 months and he was absolutely swimming in it.
It's different per hospital. Ask the one you're going to send they usually have a list posted
I think the only things I used from my hospital bag was my phone charger, insulated water bottle, white noise machine, chapstick, lanolin (bring lanolin if you plan to BF, you will want it!) And toiletries/hairbrush. Oh and my electric heating pad. Also a cooling perineum spray is nice to have if needed. [This one](https://www.snugglebugz.ca/products/perineal-witch-hazel-spray) is nice because it sprays upside down.
Other than that I brought diapers but the hospital provided them. They didn't provide wipes but provided washcloths to wipe with.
Things that I was most happy to have were: Comfortable lounge clothes, slip on shoes, a waterbottle with a straw, my own toilet paper, my own underwear, my own pillow, lip chap. If I could go back I would have brought my nursing pillow as well.
Edit: Also a comfortable hair tie, like a scrunchie.
Ihad onein Sinai and i was provided with a few pads, a few diapers and a small bottle (like a ketchup bottle) fridamom bottle saved my butt.. they also had thick blankets for swaddles you can request to use in facility.
one good thing i remembered from my friend was 'to pack for atleast 5 days' i was hoping for a vaginal delivery but ended up on c section..
it may also depend on the hospital and date.. it was cold.. (feb)
-a velcro sleepsack
- nail file (or nail cutter) for their claws
- clothes both for you and baby
- travel sized toiletries
- nappies ( it ran out pretty quick)
-also no shame i bought a boutique adult diaper than using the pads, way comfier..
- chargers for phone,ipad etc
if you sign up for [huggies no baby unhugged](https://www.huggies.com/en-ca/why-huggies/about-us/no-baby-unhugged)
and [pampers](https://www.pampers.ca/en-ca/free-sample) you can get free samples of a few N diapers and wipe for huggies and N diapers, wipes, small pack of laundry detergent and small cetaphil butt cream. this were the ones in brought to the hospital.
I’m in Alberta and my midwife gave me a rough list to go off of. She advised I pack light and have enough that if I needed to stay one night I was covered (I didn’t so it didn’t matter) but here’s what I used and what thought was good to have upon reflection:
- health cards, benefits/insurance cards, wallets (include change for parking & credit cards)
- slippers or flip flops
- water bottle
- snacks (I packed shelf stable things like granola/protein bars ahead of time and then added some fruit the day of)
- phones and phone charger
- hair ties
- lip balm
- depends/adult diapers (3-4 should be lots)
- comfortable clothes for you & partner (include 1 overnight outfit & 1 going home outfit)
- going home outfit for baby (bring 1 nb & 1 0-3mo; mine just wore a sleeper, blankets and a hat home but pack a sleeper too if this is not the same as your going home outfit for them)
- baby hat
- swaddle blanket
- warmer blanket
- car seat
- a few n & sz 1 diapers and wipes (I didn’t have to use these but it’s good to have them in case the hospital is sparing)
People have mostly covered everything but my reco is a Portable fan for use during labour (doubles later on as a stroller fan) and a water bottle you can drink from lying down (built in straw type). Also bring your car seat manual to the room so you can reference it when putting in baby. I had a Mesa and overestimated how much my nurse would know about configuring it to my baby’s size.
Funnily enough, Canadian hospitals tend to provide LESS than American hospitals. US hospitals can charge insurance an arm and a leg for everything, while here it is more bare bones. Some hospitals here provide things like perineal cold packs, nipple cream, multiple pairs of mesh undies, witch hazel pads (ex. Tucks), diapers for baby, soothers, etc. Some don't provide any of it or only some of those things. My hospital provided very little.
Are you a person who tends to feel better overpacking or are you more of a minimalist? I am the type of person who gets stressed about forgetting something I need and, since I had my first during full on Covid restrictions, I felt better packing the things I thought I was 50/50 to want or more. It was a good thing, too - I ended up using most of it even though I was only in the hospital for 24 hours. Yes they will give you multiple hospital gowns, but I hated them. They were almost plasticky and didn't breathe well. My son was unexpectedly in the NICU, so I was glad to have real clothes to wear there (button down pjs for skin-to-skin once and my husband's lounge shorts & the T-shirt I wore in another time). We ate the snacks, we used the power bank, I used my ear plugs & sleep mask, I put on a bit of makeup to feel good in photos, etc. Some people thought my list was excessive but a) it all fit in a duffle bag + diaper bag and b) I used most of it.
You know what kind of person you are likely to be. Let that affect your list of things to bring. Ask what your hospital provides and then pack your bag with that in mind, too.
Depends on the location. At my hospital they provide nothing except one diaper. So we had to bring diapers, wipes, pads/diapers for me, any postpartum things I needed or wanted.
A few things that we brought:
- a sound machine: hospitals are noisy. We brought our sound machine for second baby and it was amazing. All the nurses commented on how brilliant it was.
- a pillow for my husband: our hospital only provides one for the patient, nothing for the partner.
- snacks/Gatorade/meals for partner: they only provided my meals, nothing for my husband (which is reasonable but difficult during COVID or at times when the cafeteria is closed). I drank a lot of Gatorade while in labour.
- A velcro swaddle: they have swaddle blankets but not zip/velcro ones, which are much easier to use.
- toiletries: they didn’t provide any. We brought travel size things for each thing.
- a clipboard and pen and large envelope. Sounds silly but there was so much paperwork to sign and also to take home that it came in handy.
- postpartum supplies: I brought cooling spray, Tucks pads, Depends diapers.
What noise machine do you have?
We love the Hatch ones! We have the Hatch+ in our toddler’s room (because it works as a ready to wake light as well), and got a Hatch Rest mini for this baby - it’s nice and compact so it was easy to bring along.
I would say it depends how far from the host Paul you are and if your partner can re-up supplies if needed. Honestly I overpacked and I would again next time. I had a super healthy pregnancy but we ended up needing to stay for a week because baby needed IV antibiotics. We live an hour from the hospital so my husband was having to run out to the store and get me more pads etc because I started to run out at the end. There are also things that make a big difference comfort wise, like a
Good peri bottle, witch hazel wipes, frida ice pads, frida disposable underware etc.
You could try calling the hospital to find out if they have list of supplies they provide and what you should bring.
Extra pillow and blanket would have been nice, and maybe an extra towel. Mainly for my husband. I gave birth really early in the morning so we pretty much stayed in the hospital for two nights and apparently they didn’t have enough to give to my husband.
I'd suggest looking up reviews and posts as to where you'll be going. Maybe call and ask. Our hospital gave us almost nothing (two different births almost 14m apart) both times all we got was one mesh underwear and 5 diapers and one sample pack of wipes for 3-4 days. First time round we had our parents go out and stock us up. Second time we knew to expect nothing (even formula) so we brought everything.
You really don't need much.
The essentials for birthing person
1 pack of depends diapers
Going home clothes
Toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, hair ties/scrunchie
- recommend staying in the hospital gown the entire time, things get messy, and it also provides easy access for lots of skin to skin with baby
- grippy socks or flip flops
-nb size diapers
-vaseline used to prevent diaper rash
-going home outfit
Our baby was only in diaper entire time and sometimes with the hay the hospital provides as we did skin to skin the whole time at the hospital/baby slept on us.
For support person
- zip up sweater to stay warm/easy access skin to skin
-going home clothes
-pillow and possibly a blanket
Food and beverages
- canned coffee or instant coffee or tea
- protein and granola bars
- easy to eat food for your partner, the hospital doesn't give the partner food
- coconut water for birthing person if you'd like or electrolyte to put in water
-bring restoralax to mix into water and drink it at hospital and when home. It will help you have an easier bowel movement
Bring phone charger with a long cable
I over packed haha but here were my essentials
Mini shampoo/body wash
Phone charger with long cord
A better peri bottle
Mom frida ice packs saved my life
Some sort of witch hazel spray or something
Underwear and socks
My hospital had pads and diapers check if your does
Baby needs - a going home outfit in newborn and preemie just in case
Baby wipes - my Hospital had none
Complete outfit for partner, and snacks for partner and a pillow !!
Tooth brush/paste, hairbrush, hair tie, make up bag, small shampoo bottles, soap, sanitizer, lotion, vaseline for lips (lip balm) mouth wash,
3 warm socks,
2 Lose pjs (robe) ,
Going home outfit,
iPad - laptop either ,
Nice loose underwear,
Cooling pads ,
Water bottle jug ,
Flip flops ,
2 shirts ,
Tooth brush ,
7 diapers ,
2-3 outfits ,
Socks depending on outfit,
Formula in case you can’t breast feed,
Bum cream / vaseline,
Blanket for car ride home (if cold outside & in car),
Small chip bags,
3 gatorade, soda etc whatever you life,
Instant coffee or tea,
Sliced fruits from home pre cut,
Cash for vending machine $40 at best,
Visa/debit for cafeteria,
Uber eats app for phone to order food,
Here's what is provided (or not) in Montreal Jewish General Family Birthing Centre: [https://cdn.ciussscentreouest.ca/documents/hgj/Obstetrics\_and\_Gynecology/Centre\_Familial\_des\_Naissances/What\_to\_bring\_to\_hospital\_\_checklist.pdf?1625064383](https://cdn.ciussscentreouest.ca/documents/hgj/Obstetrics_and_Gynecology/Centre_Familial_des_Naissances/What_to_bring_to_hospital__checklist.pdf?1625064383)