Packing for Your Newborn’s Delivery

One of the most common questions expecting parents ask: What do I need to pack for my baby at the hospital? 

Here are a few helpful tips:

  • Plan for a three-day stay. Whether the mom has a c-section or a normal delivery with complications, this is typically the maximum amount of time a mom and baby will stay inpatient at the hospital. 
  • Pack six to eight outfits. The baby is learning to eat, which can lead to some spit-up and spoiled outfits, so it is important to have some extras on hand. Also, if parents are planning on doing a newborn photo shoot, it might be a good idea to pack some photo-ready outfits, as well. 
  • Pack a “going home” outfit. Consider what the weather will be like when the baby will be discharged. Baby will also need to spread his or her legs to be fastened in the car seat, so parents should keep that in mind, as well. 
  • Pack hats. Babies should wear hats on their heads until they start gaining weight. Newborns lose a lot of heat through their head, causing them to lose energy, which can lead to weight loss. So keeping the baby’s head warm is important!
  • Install a rear-facing car seat. Purchase a car seat and have the base installed before delivery. Most police and fire departments have someone on-staff who can help install the car seat and verify that it is placed correctly in the vehicle. 
  • Pack miscellaneous items the hospital might not provide. Hospitals typically do not provide diaper rash cream or pacifiers. Also, if there are specific diapers and wipes you want to use, pack those, as well. 
  • Pack a gift for the hospital staff. The quickest way to a nursing staff’s heart is through the stomach, so new parents will often bring food or sweet treats as a thank you gift to the medical team helping them through this life-changing experience. 


Whatever you do, don’t stress about packing! If you are curious about other decision you might need to make before delivery, check out this advice from Dr. Cliff James on