What to Bring to the Birth Center

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Packing for the Trip of a Lifetime.

Here are some tips on what’s useful to bring for labor and delivery, and afterward, too.

For Labor

  • A few copies of your birth plan, if you’ve chosen to write one
  • Your baby’s birth certificate form, filled out as completely as possible
  • Photo ID for checking in and out of the hospital
  • Anything that might help you relax and focus: your favorite music, a meaningful photo or object, or massage oil. For everyone’s safety, lit candles are not permitted.
  • Eyeglasses and/or contact lenses, if you wear them
  • Warm socks or slippers and shower shoes
  • Lip balm, toothbrush and toothpaste, and any other toiletries you might want for a one-to-three-day stay
  • All Swedish birth centers have free wireless, so bring a laptop or tablet so you can share updates with keep eagerly awaiting friends and family

For Your Birth Partner

  • A change of clothes, toiletries, and cash for snacks and meals
  • A camera and/or video camera (see our video recording policy)

After Delivery

  • A nightgown or robe, if you’d rather wear your own instead of what we provide. Keep in mind that there will be some bleeding post-delivery, so you might not want to bring your finest or most delicate items.
  • A maternity outfit to wear home. It will take a while to get back to your pre-pregnancy form, and you’ll want to be as comfortable as possible.
  • Contact information for everyone who wants to hear the good news
  • Notepad and pencil, for jotting down information or questions

For Baby

  • A newborn-size outfit to wear home. We’ll provide a shirt and diapers for baby to wear during her stay, plus a hat to take home. Dress her slightly warmer than you’d want to be yourself. When choosing her outfit, remember that she’ll still have her umbilical cord stump attached for several days, and she’ll need to have her legs free to be strapped into her car seat for the trip home.
  • Receiving blankets, socks or booties, and newborn mittens if you’re worried about baby scratching herself
  • Some moms bring their nursing pillows with them, although we have plenty of pillows for you to use, too
  • An approved infant car seat for the journey home — Washington state law requires it. Make sure to install it properly before you head to the hospital, and that you know how to use it correctly. You may want to take Swedish's class on care seat safety and installation before the big day. Or learn more from the Booster Seat Coalition, Washington’s independent authority on child car seats.