I don’t really mean steal, these are things you are completely allowed to take home.  And, I’m sorry, did you see the itemized bill from the hospital?!?!  Take a package of pampers!  And if you brought your nurses bagels (see my previous post), they just might bring you a few extra packs of diapers and wipes!  On top of that, most of the products are samples from the companies anyway.  Baby companies want your business and what better way to get it than to get you used to their products while you are in the hospital.  Companies supply hospitals with formula, diapers, bottles, even diaper bags to give out to their patients in hopes you will become a loyal customer to their brand.  So don’t feel bad about taking their products.  If you feel unsure or uncomfortable about what to take, just ask your nurse!  Here are my suggestions for what to make sure goes home with you.

  1. Bulb syringe-The snot sucker from the hospital seems to work better than anything you can buy.
  2. Swaddle Blankets– These blankets seem to be the perfect size for effective swaddling.  Plus, I find they are really good multi purpose blankets for later on.  They are flannel and can double as a changing pad cover or even a towel in a pinch.  I keep a few in my car!
  3. Diapers and Wipes- Diapers are expensive, so I say, take all the help you can get.  One free pack of diapers will fund your new-mom coffee habit for those first few sleep deprived days.   Also, both of my kids started out in preemie diapers.  The pack I got from the hospital got me through until they were big enough for the newborn diapers I already had at home.
  4. Mesh panties, pads and ice packs- Lets face it, your nether region goes through some trauma bringing your baby into the world.  The hospital will provide you with all the supplies you need to help you feel better and more comfortable.  Take them with you and ask for extras so you don’t have to run out to the drugstore once you’re home.
  5. Squirt bottle /Peri bottle- Along the same lines as above, wiping is a bit uncomfortable at first and it is recommended you use a squirt bottle to rinse yourself off in the beginning.  And later your toddler will love to play with the squirt bottle in the bathtub!
  6. Baby t-shirts- These little half shirts are perfect for the first few days of constant diaper changes and waiting for the umbilical cord to heal.  Plus, hang on to one for the keepsake box, in a few months you’ll never believe your baby was so small!
  7. Pacifiers- Like the bulb syringe, there is something magical about the binkies in the hospital.  Even if you don’t think you want to use a pacifier with your baby, throw that sucker (pun intended) in your going home bag, ‘cuz you never know.
  8. Breast Pump Parts- If you use the hospital grade pump during your stay, you will be provided your own set of tubes and flanges.  Bring those home, because they will most likely be compatible with your breast pump at home and it is nice to have an extra set.  Even if you don’t use the pump in the hospital, check your ‘supply drawer’ the extra set may be in there.
  9. First Aid supplies for you and baby– If you have had a c-section or your little boy was circumcised, there will be some post hospital wound care required.  My nurse sent me home with enough gauze and Vaseline to take care of my little guy until he was healed, one less thing to buy.
  10. Samples of formula, bottles, diaper bags etc- If the nurse didn’t automatically offer you some free samples.  You can just ask “is there a brand of formula/bottles/whatever that your recommend?”  Chance are, she’ll say “here, let me get you some samples.”  You can do this at your pediatrician’s office too!  We had a hard time getting our daughter to take a bottle and the nurse at the pediatrician’s office gave us some sample bottle nipples to try.