So much of pregnancy is spent preparing for baby’s arrival. As your due date gets closer, you’ll start to prepare for labor and delivery by packing a hospital bag, but I think it’s equally important to prepare for your own postpartum return home from the hospital. Moms, understandably so, are focused on baby, but it’s important to be prepared for your own recovery. Here is a list of the postpartum supplies you’ll need on hand, specifically for a vaginal delivery and if you plan on breastfeeding, which will help with your transition. Putting together a care package for a soon to be mom, that you’re good friends with, with these items is also a great idea/gift!
Breast Pads – I have really liked using the Lansinoh Stay Dry Disposable Nursing Pads. I considered buying cloth pads, but as a working mom, I knew I’d need something I could just throw away and not have to worry about washing. A friend recommended Milkies to catch leaking breast milk.
Lanolin Nipple Cream – If you plan to breastfeed, you will want to have nipple cream on hand. I have used a couple of creams and personally like the Lansinoh Breastfeeding Salve best. Fair warning though, it will stain your clothes (most do). Be sure to wear a breast pad if you’re going to use nipple cream.
Underwear You’re Ok with Throwing Away – You aren’t going to want to wear the hospital “underwear” for long, but you also won’t want to wear your nice undies postpartum. Buy some underwear you’re ok with throwing away after your first few months postpartum.
Maxi Pads – I somehow managed to forget how much you bleed postpartum, but trust me, you’ll want to have a stock of period pads on hand. The hospital will give you massive pads, but after your first few days postpartum, you’ll want to transition to overnight pads.
Nursing Tanks – While you’re home with baby, you’ll live in nursing tanks. I have nursing bras, but save those for when I return to work and just need access for pumping. Tanks are nice because your tummy stays covered while you nurse, but you still have easy access for baby. As a plus size mom, I personally love the Motherhood Maternity tanks!
Insulated Cup with Straw – I personally LOVE my Tervis and keep two on hand. They are great for hot drinks as well, but I love to fill mine up with ice to the brim and then to top with water. I fill both up before bed and have water on hand through the night.
Foods You Can Eat With One Hand – You’ll be holding your baby or feed him most of the day. Even when you can put him down, you’re probably not going to want to. I think it’s smart to have foods on hand that you can eat with one hand. I try to sit down for my meals, but it’s not always realistic those first few weeks. Have granola bars, cheese sticks, sandwich ingredients, apples, bananas, crackers, etc. on hand.
“Burp Rags” – Trust me, you will want to have a ton of these on hand. I personally recommend buying a bunch of these, they work much better than burp rags. You will use these for everything! Breast milk spills, diaper changes, burping, you name it. I think I wash a dozen of them a day… and it’s worth it!
Supplies You May Have Forgotten About for Baby
Vitamin D for Infants – If you are breastfeeding, your pediatrician will tell you to give your baby vitamin D for infants each day. With both of my pregnancies, I forgot about needing to buy this product. Save yourself a trip and buy the vitamin D ahead of time. We have used this vitamin brand for both of our kids.
Vaseline – If you’re having a son and plan to have him circumcised, you’ll need a ton of Vaseline. Learn from my mistake and buy a couple of tubes of Vaseline, not a tub. It’ll make application much easier!
Nail File – I’m sure every hospital is different, but ours will not cut baby finger nails upon birth. You won’t want to clip their nails when they are first born, so make sure to have a nail file on hand for the hospital stay or your first few days at home.