April 20, 2016

what to bring home from the hospital after having a baby

after just giving birth to my third baby, i pretty much knew exactly what i was bringing home from the hospital when we left. and not just stuff for me, but stuff for the baby, too. don't worry; these are all things the nurses (and lactation consultant) are happy to put together for you-you just have to ask!

since i planned on having a home birth, there were some things that i had already purchased or that came in our home birth kit through our midwife, but i still asked for them anyway to ensure i wouldn't run out. mostly, once we transferred to the hospital and everything happened, i knew i wasn't leaving that place without as much mesh underwear as they would allow. i pretty much wanted all the mesh undies. 

here's what to ask for (for you):

  • big ol' pads (the extra large, extra wide, extra absorbent white ones)
  • maternity pads with tails
  • peri bottle (or two)
  • all the mesh undies
  • abdominal binder
  • tub to hold it all in (i realized when we got home that we didn't grab this. so bummed!)

i kept all of those things in a little basket in the bathroom within reach to make potty time that much easier for me. for the first few days home, since i was recovering from a cesarean, i had my husband fill up the peri bottle with warm water for me to wash myself down there, but was able to manage doing it on my own after that. i also put a tube of hemorrhoid cream in there because, well, pressure. (i've heard tucks work great for that, but i didn't end up buying them, i actually made 'padsicles' while preparing for our home birth, and those helped for the first few days. i'll share the method for those soon!)

beautiful, wonderful, amazing mesh undies! i was down to my last three pair when i snapped this photo and shared on instagram.

the abdominal binder was great since i was recovering from a cesarean. it really holds the abdominal muscles in for you and makes getting around so much easier. plus, if you have to sneeze or cough, this really takes the edge off the pain. but they're not just for cesarean recovery! if you delivered vaginally, they're great for you, too. your body was working hard, mama, during all of those contractions and your abdomen needs some support and rest as well!

here's what to ask the lactation consultant for:

  • hand breast pump
  • breast milk storage containers
  • breast pad samples
  • nipples for storage containers
  • nipple cream samples
  • breast milk storage bags
  • hydrogel pads

some places even give out night nursing bras and let you take home all of the attachments to the hospital breast pump if you've used it. you would only do that if you're renting the same hospital-grade breast pump. i had that option, but was fortunate enough to be gifted an awesome pump from my midwife.

  here's what to ask for (for baby):
  • bulb syringe
  • leftover diapers
  • leftover wipes
  • swaddle blanket (or two)
  • shirt(s)
  • burp cloth
  • pacifier
  • tub to hold it all in (again, we forgot to bring one home)

also, be sure to take that amazing water bottle home with you. it will help you keep track of how much water you're drinking while nursing and aids in not having to fill up a cup as much. the hospital also gave us a 'gift bag' to bring home when we were discharged and that included tons of coupons and pamphlets, lansinoh nipple cream samples, water wipes, lansinoh breast pads, mother's milk tea bags (two of them, with coupons), cooler bag for breast milk (or formula), a halo swaddle sack, and a touch and feel puppy book that came in this pretty neat and useful canvas bag. 

keep in mind that this is what my hospital provided and gave us and that your hospital may not offer all or any of these items, or offer something different, or may offer them and charge you (i was not charged). 

did you have a hospital birth and bring home items? was there anything not listed here that you asked for? if you had a home birth, what were your essentials and did you order a pre made kit or make your own?

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