What to wear at hospital during labor: Maternity Hospital Bag Checklist | Kaiser Permanente

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What to Bring to the Hospital When Having a Baby


Cedars-Sinai Blog

Mar 20, 2019
Cedars-Sinai Staff

Have your maternity bag ready to go by week 37 or 38 of your pregnancy.

There’s no time like labor time.

There’s no day or night in those hours when a woman is nearing the birth of her baby.

Carlie Baiocchi, mother of 2, nurse, and childbirth and parenting educator at Cedars-Sinai, says time seems infinite to someone in labor.

«Being surrounded by support and warmth during this time helps keep a mother mentally relaxed and confident in her power to birth.»

Having the right tools and comforts on hand can be hugely helpful. Labor in the hospital could last 12 hours or more, in addition to any time spent at home or elsewhere in early labor.

«Being surrounded by support and warmth during this time helps keep a mother mentally relaxed and confident in her power to birth.»

Carlie advises surrounding yourself with loved ones.

If the you don’t have a partner who will be there, she suggests inviting family and friends who make you feel supported. This helps you release more of the «love» hormone oxytocin, which helps move labor along.

When to pack a maternity bag

Have your hospital bag packed and ready to go by week 37 or 38 of your pregnancy. If you have a high-risk pregnancy or you might deliver early, be ready by 35 weeks.

What to pack in a maternity bag

Hospital stays are usually 1-2 nights after the baby is born. If the baby is born by cesarean section, the stay is 2-3 nights.

To create the right environment, here’s what Carlie routinely suggests to her childbirth and parenting classes. In addition to the must-haves, she has some ideas for how to create a warm and supportive atmosphere.

The basics

  • Wallet with your photo ID and insurance cards.
  • Any forms you’ve filled out in advance for the hospital and your birth plan if you have one.
  • Lip balm and lotion or massage oil.
  • Glasses or contact lenses if you wear them. If you wear contacts, remember solution and any storing or cleaning supplies you might need.
  • Slip-on shoes for walking in the hallways.
  • Hair ties.
  • Mints, gum, or hard candies. These are usually allowed after an epidural when other food isn’t.
  • Comfortable clothing to labor in. You don’t have to wear a hospital gown. Have your partner bring comfortable clothes too.
  • Nursing bras or tank tops.
  • Toiletries: hairbrush, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, facial cleanser, shampoo, and conditioner.
  • Comfy clothes and flat shoes for the trip home.
  • Any daily medications you (or your partner) take.

Read: Answers to Your 5 Most Common Breastfeeding Questions

Important extras to put in a maternity bag

  • Bluetooth speakers. Make a playlist of songs you’d like to hear during labor and pack a speaker so you can play music softly in your room.
  • The most frequently forgotten items are chargers for phones and computers. (Should you forget, there are charging stations in the waiting room at Cedars-Sinai but having your own charger in the room is more convenient.)
  • Focal points. Something to look at while laboring. The idea is to make the hospital room feel less sterile and clinical. Some people bring pictures of their family or pets. Others use battery-powered LED candles.
  • Your own pillow if desired. Hospital linens are white, so choose a pillow case that’s a different color or has a pattern so you can identify your pillow.
  • Light reading, such as a magazine or book. Movies are available on demand at Cedars-Sinai, Carlie adds. She recommends romantic comedies, fun action adventures, or old family favorites to keep the oxytocin going.
  • Playing cards or games to pass the time.
  • Aromatherapy oils. Cedars-Sinai provides them or you can bring your own, but no diffusers are allowed in the hospital.
  • Birth ball.

For baby
You’ll need a few things for the little one, too.

  • A coming-home outfit. Bring a couple different sizes.
  • Approved infant car seat.
  • Blankets to keep the baby warm on the car ride home.

For more information on the phases of labor and what to expect, attend a Cedars-Sinai Childbirth Education Class.

Ditch the Hospital Gown: Why birthing in your own clothes matters. — Grand Rapids Birth : Doula, Photography, and Films

Written by Annica Quakenbush

Sure, pretty robes and gowns are just FUN, but I also believe it is important to ditch the hospital gown.

If you are giving birth in the hospital, wearing your own clothes the whole time you are there sends a strong and important message. It says: I am not sick. I am not a patient. I am a person first and foremost and I am here to give birth. And trust me when I say, nurses and providers get the message. It’s a simple, and beautiful thing!

Listed below are some of my favorite multi-use garments that work really well for laboring, birthing, early postpartum, nursing, and will still be useful as pajamas or loungewear for years after birth. I have avoided specific “labor gowns” that mimic the design of hospital gowns (typically with snaps and such) not because they don’t work well (they work fine), but because they are basically one-time use (boo).

Vintage floral robe set

The first — and featured — garment is this vintage floral maternity/nursing robe and swaddle set. It’s GORGEOUS, and is for sale on my sister site — Sprout Baby Co.


This rest of the blogpost contains Amazon affiliate links and we make a small amount (at no cost to you) if you purchase. We believe in these products — I either have used them myself or have clients that have recommended them.

Zipper-Nursing-Access Labor Dress

Comes in lots of lovely colors and is great to wear during labor and postpartum. I had a client wear one of these while she labored — and I later bought one for my own postpartum time. It’s super soft and stretchy, and I love the zipper design to easily nurse day or night.


Sleeveless Crossover Labor/Postpartum Dress

A recent client introduced me to this one. It has crossover fabric over the belly which makes checking the baby’s heart tones in the hospital (or at home) easy during labor. It also has a crossover top for easy nursing access immediately after birth. It continues to work well during the postpartum time. And it’s super soft and comes in lots of colors.


Super Soft Floral Maternity Robe : without lace | with lace

Any sort of soft (not too thick) robe is great for labor and postpartum. These ones are super soft and has lots of pretty patterns to choose from. Robes are absolutely perfect for skin-to-skin. I personally loved having pretty robes that made me feel super comfortable and kinda dressed up at the same time.


Matching Robe and Swaddle Set

I’m loving this cute matching set (newborn photo session, anyone?). I also had a client wear this for right after birth, and it was adorable.


kindred bravely simply sublime nursing bra

for sizes a, b, c, d, DD/e

for sizes f, g, h, i

These bras come highly recommend from so many people I know. They are soft, supportive, and come in a really great range of sizes. Those who are busty especially appreciate their sizing. In case you labor in water, I’d have a couple soft bras on hand — or just don’t wear a bra at all if you don’t feel like it.


Deep V Lace Bralette

I wore this bra during my second labor and birth. The purpose was for gorgeous birth photos and to feel beautiful during labor — mission acomplished! It’s soft enough (the nursing bras above are softer). Thanks to Brooke Collier for this image of my hubby and me.


Preparing for Birth, Products, Postpartum, LactationAnnica Quakenbushmaternity, nursing, postpartum, birth, labor1 Comment


Do I need compression garments for childbirth?


    Compression stockings are products with compression that create pressure in the legs and maintain optimal muscle tone. During pregnancy, the risk of developing varicose veins and thrombophlebitis increases, as the female body undergoes serious changes. These changes affect many things: hormonal levels, changes in the pelvic organs, blood density and viscosity.

    Against this background, various complications can develop, including the development of venous diseases and the formation of blood clots. To insure and reduce possible risks, doctors recommend using stockings for childbirth. Such compression hosiery for childbirth is called anti-embolic.

    Compression underwear can also be prescribed after childbirth, and if a woman has undergone a caesarean section, then compression stockings are recommended to be worn in the first few days after the operation. Compression knitwear for the veins of the lower extremities can be found in the form of stockings, stockings and tights. For childbirth, it is better to choose stockings. Compression stockings during childbirth are now on the list of things that pregnant women are recommended to take with them to the hospital.

    Hospital maternity stockings

    In compression stockings, there is a separate subspecies of products, which is called hospital. It is intended directly for surgical intervention. Such knitwear can be prescribed for any type of surgical intervention, a long stay in the hospital, as well as for childbirth and caesarean section.

    What are hospital compression stockings for?

    • create and evenly distribute pressure in the lower extremities;
    • prevent stagnation of blood and lymph in the legs, push them up;
    • narrow the lumen of the vein, thereby improving the functioning of the venous valves;
    • increase the fluidity of the blood and reduce its viscosity.

    Compression underwear must be worn after childbirth, at least for the first few days. Since childbirth or surgery is a burden on the body, and compression stockings will help not to aggravate problems with the veins.

    Which models to choose?

    Stockings are best for childbirth. Tights can squeeze the stomach, stockings will only locally protect the veins in the shin area, but the entire area from the foot to the groin should be covered, where the vessels are subjected to the same load and increased blood pressure.

    With varicose veins, knitwear of the 1st compression class is sometimes not enough. For a woman with existing venous diseases who is about to give birth, VENOTEKS Hospital PRO23 hospital stockings of the 2nd compression class with an ankle pressure of 23 mm Hg are suitable. They help stop bleeding in the area of ​​destruction of the vein, prevent the formation of hematomas, and reduce the intensity of pain. These stockings can also be worn after childbirth, especially for the first few days.

    Compression stockings VENOTEKS Hospital THROMBO18 1A210 with ankle pressure 18 mm Hg. suitable for both childbirth and the postpartum period in the hospital. These stockings are a suitable option for caesarean section, as they meet a number of requirements:

    • are antiembolic, i. e. antithrombotic;
    • are white, which is preferable during operations, as it is more convenient and easier to monitor the condition of the veins;
    • hypoallergenic materials included.

    Compression stockings VENOTEKS Hospital THROMBO18 1A212 accelerate venous blood flow towards the heart due to graduated pressure (compression), normalization of the venous valves and restoration of the vein lumen. Suitable for childbirth and the postpartum period in the hospital.

    4 190 ₽

    Orthopedic foot pillow VENOTEKS

    3 790 ₽

    Compression stockings VENOTEKS Hospital PRO23 2nd compression class, open toe, white

    1 890 ₽

    Compression stockings VENOTEKS Hospital THROMBO18 1 compression class, open toe, white

    2 490 ₽

    Compression monostocking VENOTEKS Hospital THROMBO18 1 compression class, open toe, white. ..

    BAUERFEIND VenoTrain compression stocking gloves, blue

    2 490 ₽

    Device for putting on compression stockings — butler VENOTEKS

    12 690 ₽

    Device for putting on compression stockings — glider plus BAUERFEIND VenoTrain

    2 490 ₽

    Compression stockings VENOTEKS Hospital THROMBO18 1 compression class, open toe, white

    Which compression class to choose?

    Wearing compression products should begin during pregnancy, and during childbirth, the use of hospital stockings is recommended. But how do you know which compression class to choose?

    Indications for wearing 1st compression class:

    • feeling of tiredness and heaviness in the lower limbs;
    • puffiness, traces of gum in socks/jeans, etc.;
    • prevention of thrombophlebitis in natural childbirth.

    Indications for wearing compression models of the 2nd compression class:

    • thromboprophylaxis for those at risk;
    • caesarean section;
    • for natural childbirth in women who have varicose veins or other vein disorders.

    Wearing stockings or tights with compression is useful for everyone, not just pregnant women, and the compression class is selected depending on the condition of the veins. For natural childbirth or for caesarean section, you need to choose a special anti-embolic knitwear.

    Wear time

    Now doctors recommend wearing compression stockings throughout pregnancy, during childbirth, and continuing to wear compression models in the postpartum period. If a pregnant woman has varicose veins or is about to have a cesarean section, then in these cases, the doctor may prescribe the wearing of anti-embolic compression stockings not only during childbirth or surgery, but also for 2-3 weeks after. The exact period is determined only by a specialist based on an assessment of the state of the whole organism and risk factors.

    A woman during pregnancy already experiences a certain discomfort, affecting not only the legs, but the whole body. And childbirth or caesarean section is even more stress and burden on the body. During natural childbirth, there is a risk of bleeding, and a caesarean section is an operation in which an incision is indispensable. The body begins to defend itself and try to protect itself from blood loss, releasing special substances for its clotting. The risk of blood clots is very high, which is why doctors strongly recommend wearing compression stockings.

    Choose compression stockings

    How to choose a maternity hospital, what to take for childbirth



      90 021 Choose a maternity hospital and decide on a team for childbirth (a contractual doctor or a team on duty? partner birth? doula?)
    • Learn about stem cell preservation during childbirth
    • Collect a bag for the maternity hospital

    Not enough information? CryoCenter will help!


    • Every expectant mother has the right to choose a maternity hospital, which is not limited to the boundaries of the area of ​​residence and even the city;
    • Collect reviews on different platforms! On one, reviews can be 80% positive, and on the other, everything is radically opposite;
    • Find out about the specialization of the maternity hospital that you like. Many maternity hospitals have it. For example, assistance to women in labor with problems of the cardiovascular and urinary systems, with oncological diseases, kidney pathologies, etc.
    • Everything is written about you (all tests, general condition, etc.) in your exchange card;
    • Be sure to find out when the maternity hospital will be closed for sanitation (washing), whether its dates coincide with the expected date of your birth? Since the maternity hospital will be closed during this period;
    • Consider:
      — What services would you like to receive at the maternity hospital? (For example, who can be with you during labor, can you invite your husband to the birth?)
      — Does the maternity hospital practice vertical/water birth or hypnosis?
      — How many women with babies will be with you in the room after delivery? >
      — Are family visits allowed?


    So, partner birth is possible if one of the two “packages” of conditions is met:

    • if there is a conclusion of a general practitioner about a past infection with COVID-19 or a positive test for IgG to coronavirus
    • Or if there is a negative test (nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal swab) for coronavirus performed by PCR method no more than 3 days before the date of delivery
    • Partner (could be spouse, mother or other family member (e. g. sister, mother-in-law) needs a measles vaccination certificate (valid for 10 years) or a measles IgG blood test result (valid for 3 months), as well as fluorography, made no more than 6 months ago and, of course, a passport.

      GET A BAG IN THE Maternity Hospital:

      A month before the birth, the bag in which the expectant mother puts everything she needs grows to the size of a weighty suitcase. What should be in the bag that will go with you to the hospital?

      There are several things that are not recommended for anyone to forget, regardless of the conditions of the maternity hospital. Moreover, from the 30th week of pregnancy, they must always be carried with you, even if you just ran out of the house for bread. This is an exchange card, a birth certificate, a passport and a charged mobile phone. Anything can happen in the last months, and if you arrive at the hospital in an ambulance empty-handed, unexpected problems can arise.

      Dear future mother, stay in the maternity hospital will be divided into «before» and «after»

      You will visit two departments, and each has its own list of things. , do not forget to take a set of cryocenter (if you have it in your hands), open the doors and get to …

      Former compartment

      Get out of the bag:

      Washing slippers,

      change your clothes. Put your outerwear / shoes in a bag and in the wardrobe. Say that you came with contractions / broken waters and go for a checkup.

      The nurse of the admission department will open a card and take documents for registration:

      • Passport (+ photocopy of the 1st page and registration)
      • medical policy (+ photocopy)
      • SNILS (+ photocopy)
      • exchange card,
      • birth certificate (if you give birth free of charge),
      • childbirth contract (if you give birth under a contract)
      • money

      The gynecologist will examine, take an anamnesis and make a decision on further referral to the maternity unit / prenatal or home..

      If you are referred to a rodblok. Tell the doctor that you will have a cord blood/umbilical cord collection and the set is in your hands or he is already waiting for you in the delivery room

      Put on compression stockings and a shirt, your own or they will give you a sterile one.

By alexxlab

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