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things to bring to hospital for c section

For one reason or another, you already know that your baby’s coming to this world by means of cesarean.  You even know the date (weird, isn’t it?)  You don’t have that packed hospital bag waiting at the front door during those last weeks of pregnancy, but will eventually need one – just a little bit different.  So you’re googling “what to bring to hospital for c section,” and I have some answers for you.

Many women underestimate the pain and discomfort involved with a cesarean and there isn’t much information out there to tell you what to bring and what to expect.  What surprised and frustrated me the most was how debilitated I was after the operation.  I had no idea that it was going to be so painful that I couldn’t walk for 3 days.  I couldn’t carry my babies up and down the stairs once we got home and Thomas had to take care of all three of us for 2 weeks until I could manage on my own.

Here’s what to take to hospital for c section.

Insurance / Identification / Medical Files

Be sure to have everything in one folder for a quick and easy check-in at the hospital.  Your baby brain has already kicked in at full force so the last thing you need is to be stressing about getting all your documents together at the last minute.

Toiletries & Cosmetics

These include everything you need for your personal hygiene. Toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, hair brush, hair ties, facial cleanser and basic makeup just to name a few.

If you’re lucky, you’ll feel well enough to shower.  Bring your showering products just in case: body wash, shampoo, conditioner, and hair dryer.

I wasn’t allowed to shower the first few days and was given sponge baths instead.  That sounds horrible, but I was in so much pain that I was thankful I didn’t have to stand under a shower.

Do yourself a favor and bring that makeup.  You will be so glad you forced yourself to put it on because you’ll never have this many photos taken of you in your whole life (unless you’re a supermodel.)  You may be bloated and hurting, but at least your face will be pretty.

Clothing for You

You need clothing that fulfill these criteria:

  1. waistbands are high enough so that they won’t put pressure on the incision
  2. the incision is easily accessible as it will be examined often
  3. easy breast access if you’re planning to breastfeed

Unless you’re a unicorn-mommy (you know the kind who never get stretch marks?), you’re still going to look 7 months pregnant after delivery.  I recommend wearing men’s flannel pajamas.  They’re loose, comfortable, and cute.  Cotton button-up-the-front nighties are great too, but eventually ride up when you’re lying in bed all day.  Cozy socks and maternity yoga-suits are also right on the money.

Don’t underestimate the convenience of the mesh underpants provided by the hospital.  Eventually, you’re gonna want your own underwear, so be sure to bring those too.  I personally loved these.

Bathrobe and slip-on slippers (ones where you don’t have to bend over to put on) or crocs are great for walking the halls.

My going-home outfit consisted of black maternity leggings, gray cotton turtleneck, black & white cashmere poncho, and black knee-high, flat-heeled leather boots.  That outfit was comfortable, looked good and the poncho covered up the Jabba-the-Hutt state my body was in – for even more photos!

Hospital Checklist for C-Section


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Nursing Accessories

Nursing Accessories include nursing bra, nursing pads, nursing cover, breast pump with pumping bra, and nursing pillow (here my favorite for twins) and/or boppy pillow

I didn’t bring my own pump because I thought I’d use the one at the hospital if I needed one.  I thought I’d be one of the lucky ones whose milk came in on the 2nd day. ha!  What I didn’t know beforehand, is that my hospital only had one pump for the entire maternity ward!

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Postpartum Girdle


This was absolutely essential in helping me get back on my feet again. It held everything together and reduced back pain.

The one I bought had hooks in the crotch area so it could be worn like a panty.  The hooks were a bit difficult getting used to in the beginning, but I got the hang of it quickly.  The hooks in the front had two settings for tightening around the belly when the bloating and swelling finally subsided.  It is one of the more expensive ones, but worth every cent.

Once in a while I would try and go without it, just to see how my body was recuperating.  But my back was hurting so badly that I could only go half a day without it.  I wore it for two months after having the babies – and it made me look slimmer as well!  It was money well spent.

The less expensive ones are worn like a belt and tend to ride up after a while, putting pressure on the incision.  I did use one during the third month for extra stability in my core.

Other things to take to hospital for c section – Electronics

Camera, phone, and power bank are all you need.  Don’t forget charging accessories, extra SD cards, and headphones.

Although I was pretty busy recovering, pumping, nursing and sleeping, I was glad I had my phone and camera with me for communicating with friends and family and taking the best possible photos of my new babies. My portable power bank was extremely handy for charging my phone while I was bedridden and couldn’t get up to plug it into the wall.

I was too tired for laptops or tablets and I didn’t miss them one bit.

Snacks & Drinks

Pack a few luxurious snacks that will make you happy.  I thoroughly enjoyed my Godiva chocolate and granola bars.  I was on a coconut water binge at the time so I brought some of that with me too – delish!

Going Home Outfit after c section

Chances are, your hospital will provide baby clothing for the duration of your stay.  Check just to make sure.

My advice in choosing baby’s going home outfit is “keep it simple!”

I promised my mother-in-law that I would dress the babies in the going-home outfits she gave us.  These outfits couldn’t have been more complicated:  long sleeved onesies (body-wrap style with a million snaps and ties), gray polyester overalls with 10,000 snaps, and then we also had to put on her oversized self-knitted sweaters, hats and booties!  To top it all off we covered them with her self-crocheted blankets.  Though Thomas did most of the work, I was drenched in sweat and completely frazzled by the time we had the babies strapped into their car seats and we made the photos of evidence.

What do you need for a newborn baby?

A cute cotton sleeper pajama with matching cap and warm cotton blanket would have been perfect.

Did I forget anything?

If you’re like me, you’re going to be overly prepared for all possibilities and will pack way too much stuff.  I hope this list is a good guideline in helping you consider what’s really important and what’s not.  Let me know how it went in the comments below!  I’d love to hear from you!


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Essential and helpful items for your hospital bag if you are having a c-section. Make sure to grab your FREE HOSPITAL BAG CHECKLIST! #hospitalbagchecklist #hospitalbagessentials #CSection