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post delivery care

During pregnancy we talk a lot about preparing for labor and birth, even breastfeeding, but most of us don’t spend time preparing for the actual postpartum care, healing after birth. I sure didn’t my first time around. When it comes to post delivery care, I want to be very prepared this time with baby number three. To be honest, becoming a mom of three is freaking me out, so I am trying to do all of the things I can to make life easier for myself. These are things I didn’t do the last two times, and wished I had. With that in mind, I’ve compiled the ultimate postpartum care kit list including everything you (we) might need to survive those initial postpartum days.

When you have a new baby, you not only need to be able to focus on taking care of baby, but yourself too! You’ll want to be as comfortable and at ease as possible so you can care for your new babe and (hopefully) get some rest in between. It makes a huge difference if you already have a postpartum care kit ready to go at home, so you aren’t scrambling and trying to find, order, ask and wait for things you need to feel better.

healing after birth

The Must-Haves for your Postpartum Care Kit

What you need for healing after birth

  1. Sitz Bath
    I personally do not remember my birthing center giving me this, but I have heard from several moms around the country that they have been given one at their hospital. If not, you can find them here. You’ll find that water down there after birth is a good thing.
  2. Peri Bottle
    You’ll use this when you go to the bathroom, to clean yourself and for pain relief. If I remember correctly, the hospital gave me one. This one is really nice, but a basic one works fine too.
  3. Postpartum Herbs
    These are great to add to your sitz bath for added relief.
  4. Witch Hazel
    This is great to add to your peri bottle for added relief and cleansing. And, most moms swear by it for making “padsicles”.
  5. Perineal Spray
    This is great to have handy for pain relief, and it’s all natural.
  6. Ice Pack Pads
    These were a favorite postpartum care item of mine! The hospital provided these, but I do remember wishing I had more once I got home, just for the first few days.
  7. Scar Away
    This would be if you have a c-section, of course. I have never had a c-section before (hoping not to this time, but you just never know). However, I thought of this because I did just have my appendix removed at almost 26 weeks pregnant, and my nurse suggested using Scar Away. As you can imagine, it’s quite strange to have a large incision trying to heal on a belly that seems to be growing by the second. When I looked at Scar Away I noticed it’s for c-sections. So, if you know you will be having a c-section go ahead and get this now!

Postpartum Care Kit Items for Breastfeeding

  1. Nursing/Sleep Nursing Bra
    If you plan to breastfeed, you will want nursing bras to wear on a regular basis going forward. In those initial days and even few weeks, a sleep nursing bra is the most important one. You’ll likely be lounging around the house a lot, so comfort will be key. It’s important to get one that’s comfortable enough to sleep in because you don’t want any leakage at night while you’re sleeping, not fun. I recommend this one, from Coobie. They can be worn throughout your pregnancy and postpartum, and are great for sleeping in!
  2. Nursing Clothes
    When I say “nursing clothes”, this can really be anything that works for you. If you’re a first time mom, you may have to try out several options before you find what you’re most comfortable in. Initially, you’ll just want to be comfortable and these nursing dresses are awesome for that.For you, it may just be sweatpants and a t-shirt, or yoga pants and a nursing tank (or even a regular tank that just works for nursing). You don’t have to buy specific nursing clothes, you only need to consider if what you have will work for nursing. It’s really frustrating to get dressed only to realize your clothes are a nightmare for nursing and you practically have to undress to feed your baby.
  3. Nursing Pads
    If you plan to breastfeed, you’ll want to have these on hand. You don’t want to be leaking through your shirt, especially at night (or worse, in public).

Related: 10 Things You Can Do to Prepare for Labor and Delivery

Other Stuff You’ll Want for Post Delivery Care

  1. Stool Softener
    Yup. Stool softener. I said it. My first time giving birth I was told to take a stool softener. Did I listen? Nope. Did I regret it. My gosh, yes. I cried, you guys. Just have it ready, and take it.
  2. Pain Management
    I honestly don’t remember if I was prescribed pain medication after my last two deliveries. I didn’t fill the prescriptions, if so. I just used Tylenol/Advil as needed. Just make sure you have something for pain management on hand for those initial postpartum days.
  3. Water Bottle
    You probably have one handy, but if you’re motivated to drink more water by getting a cute new bottle, do that. You’ll want to stay hydrated, especially if you’re breastfeeding. As I mentioned in this hospital bag packing list post, I love the water bottle my birthing center gives out, but there’s one problem with it once I’m home with a new baby: spillage. You’ll spend a lot of time on the couch or bed in those first days and weeks postpartum, so it’s better to have a bottle that you can reach easily that won’t spill. Picture being really thirsty while nursing and not being able to move, but your water bottle is laying right beside you, so no big deal!
  4. Tena Pads
    Regular pads aren’t normally good enough for overnights right after delivery. Just grab one pack. The heaviness won’t last that long and then you can use regular ones again!
  5. Donut
    Again, this would come in handy if you’re having a c-section. And again, I have never had a c-section, but after having an appendectomy about a month ago, I know having a donut was a life-saver. Imagine having to sneeze, cough, or laugh, or just move at all with a fresh incision in your mid-section. Holding this donut over the incision area is a huge help. You may want to hold off on getting one, because the hospital provided one to me when I had my appendix removed, and since I was technically in a birth center after surgery (since I’m pregnant) I imagine they had donuts on hand for c-section mamas. The one they gave me wasn’t as nice as this one,  it was like purple foam, but it worked just fine!
  6. Belly Band
    I have never personally worn one of these, but my fellow mom friends have sworn by them. I think I’ll be trying this out after baby #3 comes! It’s supposed to help slim and support your belly and waist postpartum, and also help ease back pain. I’m getting one for sure this time!

When it comes to post delivery care, you don’t need everything on this list, but this list gives you an idea of what types of things you do need, and you can choose what sounds important to you.

While you’re prepping for baby, check out these related posts:

Braxton Hicks vs Real Contractions: How to tell the difference

Free Stuff for Expecting Moms & New Babies

FREE Printable Hospital Bag Packing List

The 10 BEST Pregnancy Hacks Every Pregnant Mama Needs to Know

postpartum care kit

Photo by Wayne Evans from Pexels

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