Friday, June 13, 2014

Packing Your Hospital Bag for Breastfeeding

In addition to the things you will want during labor and the cute coming home outfit you will want to pack for baby, there are specific things you will want during your hospital stay for breastfeeding:

  • Disposable Nursing Pads - Not all disposable pads are created equally.  Choose a brand that is completely breathable such as the Ameda NoShow Nursing Pads or the Hygeia Custom Nursing Pads that are available in two sizes to accommodate moms who are more endowed.  Lansinoh Nursing Pads are another good brand for breathability.  Washable nursing pads are a great money saver, but you may still want disposable as a time-saver for the first week while you are adjusting to caring for a new baby. 
  • Sleep Nursing Bra - This bra needs to have no hooks with which to fumble and it needs to room for your breasts to expand as the milk comes in.  The Amamante Night & Day Nursing Bra just pulls down to nurse and is perfect for B-DD cups.  The  Amamante Comfy & Curvy Nursing Bra has a hidden inner support to keep moms in the E-H cup supported while offering easy access.
  • Nursing Gown or Pajamas -  The Amamante Signature Nursing Gown and Serenity Nursing Pajamas offer a built in sleep bra for B-DD cups so this can save you money over buying a gown and a separate sleep bra.  If you are not using a standard hospital gown for labor because you purchased a nursing gown for labor and delivery, you will still want to pack another nursing gown as the gown used for labor is likely to be soiled in the process.
  • Nipple Cream - This can help in the babymoon period while you and your little nursing are learning to latch.  Just remember to use it sparingly on the affected area and not on the entire areola.  Also, you will want to use your nursing pads with it as many brands tend to soil your garments.  Lanolin is a time tested effective breast cream which can be found in the Ameda ComfortLan brand.
  • Nursing Bra or Nursing Tank - You will either want  a daytime nursing bra or a nursing tank with built in nursing bra to wear home.  We recommend the Bravado BodySilk Nursing Bra for most moms because each size fits a range of sizes to accommodate your changing shape. The BodySilk Nursing Bra also has removable foam cups for extra room and memory fabric so as your breasts regulate it goes back to it's original shape.  If you are larger busted, the Bravado Essential Nursing Tank is available in up to FG cup sizes.  The Bravado Nursing Tank runs a little large making it perfect for when your milk comes in.  The bra that is built in to the Essential Nursing Tank is supportive unlike the shelf bra in most nursing tanks.  If these two styles do not offer your cup size, shop by nursing bra size on our website for more options.  Measure for your nursing bra size 3-4 weeks before you deliver and order early so you have your bag packed in plenty of time.
You should begin packing your hospital bag at least 4-6 weeks before delivery just in case your baby decides he or she can't wait to meet you!  If you don't have an overnight size bag, consider using your breast pump bag like this affordable Breast Pump Cooler Bag by Hygeia.  It has a removable bottle cooler so you will have extra room for your personal items.