10 Things to Pack Specifically For a Scheduled C-Section

10 Things to Pack Specifically for a Scheduled C-Section


Whether you're having a scheduled C-section for multiples, a breach baby, previous C-section, or anything else, it can still be a scary situation. Hang in there mom, you've got this! A lot of mom's go through it and you can too. I've been through 2 C-sections, one emergency and one urgent (I'll explain that in another post sometime), but the second was supposed to be a scheduled so I've been through this. Getting ready for a scheduled C-section isn't much different than preparing for a vaginal birth (planned or not), but there are some key differences. I discuss those differences in hospital bag packing below with some additional discussion about why these things should be included. Let's get into that.

1. The Necessary Bra

Breastfeeding or not, you'll need some bra help after baby is born. If you're breastfeeding, bring nursing bras or tanks and nursing pads. If you're not breastfeeding, then bring some tight (but not painfully) and supportive bras. Keeping your breasts supported without room for the milk to come in will help prevent engorgement pain.

2. A Journal or Some Blank Pages in Your Baby Book

If you want to log your experience, do so right away. While baby is sleeping, get it written down right away so that you don't forget anything. You also have the benefit of your birth partner's most accurate memory. And if you need to, I'm suggesting doing this a lot, the nursing staff will be there in case you need to double check some numbers or clarify why or how something went the way it did.

3. A Boppy Pillow

Even if you don't intend to breastfeed, a Boppy pillow has multiple uses when recovering from a C-section. You can still use it to help you feed baby a formula because it helps to lesson the weight of baby while you cradle them while bottle feeding. And when you're not holding baby, the Boppy pillow can be pressed into your lower abdomen and onto the incision site when you need to cough or sneeze and when you laugh. This helps prevent the incision from pulling at your stiches or staples when under the sudden force of coughing or sneezing.

4. An Appropriate Going Home Outfit for Mom

No, I'm not saying to not be scantily clad. I don't care what you leave the hospital wearing. I just recommend that it's something with a loose band around the waist (for pants, shorts, or skirts) and that is comfortable enough for you to handle getting home in it. Don't worry about how you look in pictures, any looking at them anyway will be focusing on the baby anyway not what Miss Just-Out-of-Major-Abdominal-Surgery is wearing. Focus on comfort and not having anything tight on your incision site.

5. Anything To Help You Relax

If a special pillow in your room will help you prepare yourself and recover afterwards, then bring it along. Do you find using a stress ball when you're... stressed? Bring it along. A picture on your bedside table, cross for in your room, or even a stuffed animal (I won't judge) can give you plenty of comfort when you really need it. Just remember that you won't be able to bring your comfort item into the operating room.

6. A Belly Binder

If you want to go this route, bring it with (obviously). I personally didn't use a Belly Binder or other type of compression belt after either birth but I've heard good things about them. They are supposed to reduce swelling, support your muscles, and promote easier movement during recovery. The hospital staff will need to check on your incision from time to time while you're staying there so you'll need to move or remove the belt at those times.

7. Stool Softener

I want to bold this one but the OCD won't let me. This is an extremely important one. After birth, vaginal or C-section, you will deliver what my nurses called the "pop can poop". Your first poop after birth, without a stool softener, comes out in the size and shape of a can of pop/soda. With my first birth, the hospital prescribed and filled the prescription but with my second birth, I had to supply it (and this was the same hospital both times). Be on the safe side and bring it with. Even if the hospital gives it to you while you're there, you'll need to continue taking it once you're discharged so you'll have them when that happens.

8. A Camera

Keep in mind that many doctors don't allow filming in the operating room. Pictures are allowed however, so bring a charged phone or camera with you if you want to take pictures of the situation. But moms, keep in mind your birth partner's feeling on this. As much as I wanted pictures of my insides literally cut apart with hands digging around inside of me pulling a baby out, my SO was VERY uncomfortable with the idea. I couldn't even talk him into edging my phone over the top of the tarp and blindly snapping pictures. He got himself into the OR by my side and there for our boys each time but he was already extremely uncomfortable with being in there. If your birth partner is apprehensive about the situation, keep their feelings in mind and don't push too much. They might be holding back how uncomfortable they are but trying to stay strong for you. They might be scared with you.

9. Eye Mask and Earplugs

If you're a light sleeper, try bringing these along. You'll have a harder time relaxing after surgery, especially if you're surgery is later in the day and your adrenaline is still flowing strong that night. As long as baby is sleeping in the nursery, you can definitely wear earplugs to help you get rest. Get as much as you can, you won't be getting much once you head home with baby!

10. The Usual Needs

Check out The Logical Hospital Bag Checklist for my take on what to actually bring in your hospital bag considering what you're actually likely to use, what you really need, and what the hospital will supply for you.

As you can see, there's a lot of things to be packed that are common in hospital bag packing lists. But the key differences are very important in preparing for baby to come. Be sure to both pack and plan ahead of time so you've got yourself in the right mind when the day does come. Make your preparations at home, with your kids and loved ones, and get all of your necessary materials packed so you're ready to go the morning of your scheduled C-section (or earlier if your baby is like my second boy...)


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