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Postpartum Supplies

Why Didn't Anybody Tell Me: Postpartum Supplies

Stocking up for baby is similar to gathering supplies for an emergency kit, you never really know what's missing until disaster strikes.

Sure, people suggested I prepare while pregnant and I felt secure with my stack of onesies and tower of receiving blankets, but I completely forgot about myself. For all you moms-to-be, these were my three biggest mistakes. To see what they were,


  • Pads — Having used tampons pretty much since I got my period, I never paid attention to the terms "dry weave," "with wings" and "overnights." But, bulk packs of those products are what saved my postpartum pants. And, "ultra thins" are the way new moms can go out without feeling like they are the one wearing diapers.
  • Electric Breast Pump — In an instant, I was Dolly Parton and the $50 manual pump I bought on the advice of a male employee at Target didn't do the trick. After sopping the milk up with washcloths, then hand towels — neither of which helped a bit, my husband went out and threw down $300 for the best electric pump he could find. And, I waited at home on the couch wrapped in a soaked over-sized bath-towel bewildered by my body.
  • Food — When we brought home our daughter, all I had in the cabinet was two dozen baby bottles and a big ole bag of hard coffee candies. When a hunger pang hit, I ate a couple handfuls and then practically hallucinated for the rest of the day. An empty stomach, caffeine and sleep deprivation are a frightening mix. Later, my aunt brought over enchiladas which balanced things out. Definitely do a big shop close to your delivery date or allow friends and relatives to bring you homemade food or take-out.

Luckily, I learned from my errors. When we arrived home from the hospital with our son, things ran rather smoothly!

Do you have any items to add to this list?

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bluepuppybites bluepuppybites 8 years
i didn't always need to wear a bra is what i meant
bluepuppybites bluepuppybites 8 years
The bra was a great addition. My sister told me I should get a nursing bra without underwires and I thought no way. She bought me one for my shower. I was so happy she did. I was right up there Dolly Parton. I did stock up on those tank tops with the built in support so that i would always need to wear a bra, those are very nice right after birth.
bluepuppybites bluepuppybites 8 years
The spray stuff is called Dermoplast. Also get something for the relief of dare I say it hemroids. Almost every woman gets them before or during delivery. Make sure you have something for the relief of engorgement as well. Yes pumping and nursing works well, but I bought some pads for my sore nipples since my daughter wasn't a good nurser starting out.
Beachwalker Beachwalker 9 years
You gave me a great idea for a shower gift. Gift certificates for take out!!!
milosmommy milosmommy 9 years
Yes I have to agree that the squirt bottle was the best thing ever. I used that for about 2 weeks after the baby was born. At the hospital they gave me special pad/ice pack combos to put in the undies. Those were great and I wish I would have been able to take some of those home.
buch1979 buch1979 9 years
Indy area women St.Francis hospitals provide you with an entire postpartum kit. The bag was HUGE, but it had a "perry care kit", the giganto pads, nursing pads, travel size creams, lotions & toiletries from virtually every label on the market,& a bunch of things for the new little one. The perry care kit contained, a foam anasthetic, hemroid pads, special new mom wipes, and a plastic squirt bottle for cleansing those delicate girl areas that needed extra care. There were also some great coupons for local eateries that offered take out, or delivery service.
Moms Moms 9 years
schnappycat — great additions to the list. I can't believe I forgot the squirt bottle the hospital gave me. I worshiped that helpful lil container after tearing... And, I still buy OxyClean Baby in bulk!
schnappycat schnappycat 9 years
My hospital gave me some of this spray anasthetic for that area for using the bathroom. I can't remember the name of it now, but it was great and I stole an extra can to take home with me. They also told me to use a squirt bottle with water to squirt on the area while peeing to dilute the urine as it comes out. That was a bit tricky at times!
carlista_baby carlista_baby 9 years
No one told me how much it would hurt to pee after childbirth. I didn't 'tear' but I did have 'grazing' so peeing was intense and extremely painful. I recommend stocking up on Ural. It comes in sachets and you mix with water and drink it. It reduces the acidity in your urine and is safe to drink while breastfeeding. Also washing "down there" was painful. I found Cetaphil to be very gentle and didnt sting like soap can.
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
that's water bottles, and they were for me not baby :)
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
what's that pan called you use for a "sitz bath"?? helps the um, area that was most effected by the delivery. i also kept several bottles under the table next to my nursing chair so i'd stay hydrated and some ceral bars in case i got hungry.
schnappycat schnappycat 9 years
Yep, I had to wear the giant maxi pads for about a month after giving birth. I actually used the hospital-provided ones while I was there and for a week or so after because they were huge and necessary. Definitely stock up on good pads. I still managed to ruin some underwear, so I suggest not pulling out your best for a week or two. Somewhat relatedly, I suggest having a good stock of laundry supplies. I especially have found Oxi-Clean to be a lifesaver. It's fab for getting out blood (like from the aforementioned postpartum underwear) and poop. I never realized until recently how many poop accidents I'd be cleaning up. I go through Oxi-Clean like crazy and should probably start buying it at Costco.
babysugar babysugar 9 years
ahh... the days of pads. these are great pointers lil!
nancita nancita 9 years
Never would have thought about pads either. Thanks for sharing your mistakes!
toenails15 toenails15 9 years
I would definitely add a supportive and COMFORTABLE bra... all of mine had underwires and I realized with my newly sensitive breasts I needed something a little less structured. I went out 2 weeks after a c-section just to buy a couple. I wish I would have thought beforehand!
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