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What to pack in a hospital bag for dad? Women usually have an extensive list, and all the essentials are probably already in her bag. There are still some things you should take yourself. You may even end up being her hero if she forgot that bottle of water or a phone charger. It’s worthwhile to also check with your hospital if they recommend something. Scroll down to see the items in my list!
Hospital Bag Checklist For Dad
Food & Drink
Be mentally prepared for spending many hours in the hospital. In smaller hospitals cafeterias may be closed during the night. Not all places have vending machines.
Pack some energy-boosting snacks to the dad hospital bag. Your partner can usually eat small snacks to get some energy. Pack a sturdier sandwich for yourself.
It’s always a good idea to take 1-2 bottles of water (without gas) with you. Juice is a good option as it contains plenty of carbohydrates and vitamins.
Fight The Boredom
If active labor lasts over 8 hours, then you will get bored. Your partner may get some sleep, but you have nothing to do. Take a tablet or a good book with you.
If you think you'll be able to sleep in a chair then take a travel pillow with you. Jurogran travel pillow (check the latest price on Amazon) is a popular choice.
Capture That Day
Most of us have mobile phones capable of catching superb photos. DSLR cameras have a bigger sensor and offer a better quality though. If you are not a professional, then a DSLR is more forgiving. You can later crop images and still retain excellent image quality.
Most DSLR cameras let you record raw+jpeg file formats. If you have saved raw files, then you can later adjust all the settings.
Birth of a child is a momentous event in a man's life. I recommend buyin or borrowing a DSLR camera so you can have a ton of good quality images and videos of that day.
There are many options out there. My personal choice at the moment is Canon EOS 77D (check the latest price on Amazon). It’s a bit more advanced camera, and you can shoot Full HD videos with it. A separate video camera is also a good option.
Dads hospital bag should hold an extra shirt, socks, underwear, a toothbrush (or refreshing mints), toothpaste and a deodorant stick...because...well you know...
Be fully charged
Don’t forget to take a phone charger with you. Your partner will thank you. Make sure that your camera is charged. The last part may be a bit tricky as babies don’t send text messages to announce their time of arrival. Keep a power bank in your dad hospital bag. Anker PowerCore 10000 (check the latest price on Amazon) is a lightweight device that works fast.
Your Health Is Also Important
If you use any medications, then don’t forget to take them with you as you may end up spending a lot of time in the hospital.
Pain relievers, for example, are good to have with you. It’s generally not advisable to complain about your headache while she’s in labor.
If you use contact lenses, then put your glasses into the dad hospital bag. Your eyes may get tired even if you use lenses that you theoretically could keep for many days.
You usually need loose change to pay for coffee or refreshments. In some hospitals, you may have to pay for parking.
Flowers & Presents
Put a bar of chocolate to the dad hospital bag. She'll be exhausted, and this energy booster is something she'll need.
After the birth of your child bring her flowers! Most hospitals sell flowers so no need to pack them:)
What's A Push Present?
In the U.S it's quite common to give "push presents" or at least over half of the pregnant women want one (source).
Do Women Really Expect A "Push Present"?
In September 2017 Serena Williams welcomed her baby girl to the world and asked a question in Instagram.
Ladies is a "push present" a thing?
Serena Williams - professional tennis player
You can read many answers in this article in Vogue. The truth is, even if it is just a marketing ploy, many women secretly hope for one.
It’s up to you to figure out if she expects a small present.
How Much Should Push Present Cost?
Supposedly art and jewelry are popular choices among celebrities.
That said, chocolate and flowers will raise you above average even if you are not planning to buy her that Monet.
Push Present Ideas
I'll give you three simple ideas just to get you started:)
To Sum Up
I hope this list helps you to be prepared for that beautiful day. Some hospitals want you to bring your pillow and bed sheets. They may not provide a balance ball. There may not be a radio so you may want to bring your portable speaker with you. As I’ve mentioned earlier, it’s worth checking with your hospital if you should bring something not mentioned in this list.
If you wish to read more about fatherhood, click here to read my guide.