Preemie hospital bag

Have a preemie or having a high risk pregnancy? We have provided you a list of top must have items that will help you during your NICU stay. While the hospitals will provide your baby with the essentials during their NICU stay (i.e., diapers, wipes, iron, vitamin D, blankets…and life saving equipment), below are items that helped us during our 53 day journey. NICU nurses will often give you a shelf or small space for your personal items. Be sure to tape name tags on your belongings and recognize your baby could be moved to another pod/bed at anytime – so keep your items organized and mobile. 

  1. Poster/image for motivation that you can put up. Given you will spend countless hours watching monitors, a little sign/reminder to give you strength goes a long ways. You will need to be smart where you put this so hospital staff don’t complain. Avoid painted walls. 
  2. Tiny stuffy. A little something you keep near the babies bedside so you have something to cuddle with during times you cannot hold your baby. It is your pre home nursery after all. If you are able to get your hands on the preemie octopus, all the better. Be sure no stuffies are left with your baby as that could be a suffercation risk. 
  3. Slippers and cozy robe. Something you can wear during your baby kangaroo care sessions. Baby carrying shirts are also nice. Keep in mind what you bring in must be sterile. You should not wear clothing you travelled to the hospital in when you hold your child. Your clothing could have germs. Same goes for visitors. My visitors brought extra clothing that they changed into or they would wear the hospital provided robes. 
  4. Organic baby dish soap and bowl. Use this to clean pump parts, baby pacifiers, etc. The hospital soaps may be to harsh for little ones.
  5. Organic baby wash soap. If you want to use your own gentle baby products for babies first baths. 
  6. Dairy free baby probiotics drops. Do your own research and determine if this is right for you and/or your baby. Some babies born early lack the proper bacteria in their gut and may benefit from these drops. Some hospitals in the world try this but many do not yet, so you would have administer the drops yourself. 
  7. Journal. Write in this daily. Make notes on babies likes, dislikes, milestones, what they did that day, daily weight, who visited/gifts given. Great keepsake for years to come.
  8. Baby books and nursery time. Great time to start reading to your little one and learn nursery rhymes. 
  9. Maternity/baby prep books. Use some of your time to catch up on the books you didn’t get to read yet. Keep in mind, it’s important to rest between pumping, feeding, holding, etc. Nurses are great sources of information, they can teach you how to swaddle your baby.
  10. A few baby outfits. Be sure to tag your clothing and put a sign up that tells the nurses your baby has their own items. It is such a great feeling when your baby can finally fit preemie clothing!  Celebrate! Nurses love to dress your baby too!
  11. Snacks. While you can’t eat at the bedside, you will need and abundance of food given you just had a baby and especially if you are breastfeeding. Keep stocked with snacks and water throughout the day. 
  12. Phone and charger. For when you need to talk to someone, text, google. Whatever keeps you strong. 
  13. Unsented baby safe lotion. Use this on yourself and for baby massages. Your hands will need it from all the hand washing you will be doing. Baby massages are thought to have long term benefits for your baby. I continued these until my baby was a year old. 
  14. Crystal nail file. The perfect nail trimmer for those delicate fingers. 

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