What Does the Hospital Supply When You Have a Baby?

As an expectant mother, you’ve probably wondered about questions like these: “What does the hospital supply when you have a baby?”, “What do hospitals provide after delivery?”, “Can you take baby blankets from the hospital?”, or maybe even, “Does the hospital give you diapers?”




I want to help you out by answering those questions because there are some really great “hospital freebies” you can snag from the hospital after giving birth. And, even though your insurance technically pays for them, it’s kind of like a small shopping spree of postpartum care items you won’t pay for when you leave.




While packing my hospital bag, one thing I wondered when I was preparing to have my first baby was, what does the hospital supply when you have a baby? Diapers? Wipes? Blankets? And, I had no idea what to expect for myself after giving birth.




Because I was unsure of the answer to that question I ended up REALLY overpacking. Many of the things I had in my hospital bag were provided by the hospital.




One thing that may not be on your radar is the hospital freebies that (most) hospitals provide for newborns and new moms. I’m going to share 10 things hospitals typically give new parents! AND, I’m going to include pictures of some less familiar items so you can see what I’m talking about.




Many of these items can be included in your postpartum care kit you’ll want to have at home for when you come home from the hospital. Here’s how you can create your postpartum care kit!






*This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using this link. I only recommend products I love or would personally use.




Before we jump in,  if you’re feeling overwhelmed as a first-time mom, here are a couple of helpful resources to make you feel more prepared.


Newly Pregnant?– The Bump Smart Planner will walk you through every aspect of your pregnancy and help you know what to expect and how to plan ahead. Trimester-specific checklists, baby shower organization, important questions to ask when looking for a daycare and pediatrician, hospital tour questions, baby registry checklists, worksheets to prepare your relationship for a baby, and more!



Pregnant and Preparing for Birth?– The Birth Smart Planner gives you a checklist for packing your hospital bags, preparing your house for your new baby, places to write your birth story, and more!







What do hospitals provide for newborns?


Does the hospital provide diapers?

I am yet to hear of a hospital that doesn’t provide you with diapers for your baby. What’s super nice about this is that whatever diapers you have left on your baby changing station when you leave, you get to take them home. And, if you have an awesome nurse, they’ll replenish your diaper stash right before you leave so you have a few extra diapers to take home with you. If you’re wondering what brand of diapers hospitals provide, I’ve been given Pampers diapers and Huggies Diapers.






Does the hospital provide baby wipes?

Much like diapers, you also get to take whatever wipes they give you. And, as I’m sure you’ll soon experience if you haven’t already, babies are MESSY! You seriously can never have enough wipes. They puke and poop all day long. Take all the wipes! In terms of wipes brand, I have also been given Huggies wipes and Pampers wipes.









Do I get to take home the cute newborn baby hat?

There is something to be said about your baby’s first hat from the hospital. Many people will take this little hat and put it in a baby keepsake box or a shadow box. Baby heads need to be kept warm, especially until your baby learns to regulate their own temperature. We were given a couple of hats with each of our kids.






Does the hospital provide baby wash for newborns?

We were given a sample of Johnson & Johnson’s Baby Wash at the hospital. They used one to wash our baby after delivery, and then there were one or two extras on our baby cart. In my opinion, you can never have enough trial-size items. They are great to pack in an overnight bag. I have also taken them on vacation when flying with our kids.



Along with baby wash, two baby items you don’t know you need yet that the hospital will likely provide are a baby hairbrush, and a bulb syringe.

picture of a fine bristle baby hairbrush with an amazon link to purchase the item 


Our baby station had this really amazing baby hairbrush. It is SUPER soft and awesome for sweet little baby heads. I like that the bristles are soft and super flexible. Also, from my experience, the brushes are really great for helping to remove cradle cap if your baby ends up with that. Ours was white, but each of our kids has LOVED to have their hair brushed with this thing. Try it yourself and you’ll understand why! Promise, I won’t judge!





This is a bulb syringe. They may be a different color, but most often, they’re blue. If your baby experiences baby chest congestion, you’ll want to have one of these.


picture of two bulb syringes with an amazon link to purchase them 


To use the baby nose bulb syringe, you squeeze the syringe and then gently stick the tip of the syringe into your baby’s nose, not pushing in too far. Slowly release pressure off of the bulb. With any luck, you’ll help unclog your baby’s nose. Be careful to not stick the syringe in too far because you can scratch the inside of your baby’s nose.






Does the hospital supply baby lotion for newborns?

The hospital will provide you with a couple of bottles of trial-size baby lotion. I am sure you have added plenty of baby lotion to your baby stockpile because it was on your baby registry checklist, BUT, much like soap, you can really never have enough travel-size baby lotions either. I like to keep one in the car, my purse, and of course, the diaper bag.






Does the hospital provide formula?

picture of many bottles of enfamil neuropro gentle ease ready to use infant formula with an amazon link to purchase 

If you are not planning to breastfeed, or if you need to supplement breastfeeding your newborn, hospitals will usually help you out by giving you ready-to-use formula if requested. You likely have some at home, but those little bottles of formula that you just have to add to the nipple are super convenient, but also REALLY expensive. Take advantage of the baby formula the hospital gives you if they provide it.






Disposable diaper changing pads

picture of disposable diaper changing pads with an amazon link to purchase 

Babies are messy. And it’s funny because with every kid you add to your family, you somehow seem to forget how messy newborns are. Our changing pad is waterproof, which also means it’s easily wipeable, but who wants to be doing that the first week or so? I found it so much easier to take one of the disposable changing pads and put it on the changing table, or in our case, the pack n’ play changing station. That way if it got messy, I just tossed it with the dirty diaper. The ones you get at the hospital will just be plain white, but these are SUPER CUTE!



Read NEXT:  Non-Baby Items to Stock Up On Before Baby (You probably haven’t thought of this!)








What Does the Hospital Give You After Birth?:


Does the hospital give you a peri bottle?

picture of 3 perineal cleansing bottles with an amazon link to purchase 

The peri bottle was one of my best friends after both vaginal delivery and a c-section. There is something to be said about not having to wipe. Seriously. TMI- things get messy down there. And, you’ll need to be clean, but at the same time, if you’ve had any degree of tearing, you aren’t allowed to wipe for fear of tearing your stitches. The peri bottle gets filled up with warm water, and you spray down there to keep things clean. It’s awesome! *I would recommend asking for an extra if you’ll be using more than one bathroom on a regular basis. You don’t want to have to track one bottle down all the time!






Does the hospital provide Tucks pads?

picture of a box of tucks medicated witch hazel pads with an amazon link to purchase

Tucks pads were another one of my lifesavers after giving birth vaginally. Tucks pads help to clean things up while also applying witch hazel to the skin. Witch hazel is great for aiding in healing. The hospital is likely to have an off-brand name, but they were so great, that we stopped on the way home and bought TUCKS brand pads. If you experience any kind of hemorrhoids, you’ll want these for a while.






Does the hospital provide numbing spray?

picture of a bottle or dermoplast numbing spray with an amazon link to purchase

My postpartum care nurse walked me through a postpartum care routine that was easy to follow and helped me care for myself while healing. We would take a menstrual pad, place a line of Tucks pads along the middle, and then spray the Dermoplast spray over the Tucks pad. The pad would them go inside the mesh underwear and I was good to go. The bottle they gave me at the hospital had plenty in it when I left, and I didn’t even have to buy more.


{PS- The hospital won’t supply this amazing dry shampoo for you, but you should 100% take one with you to the hospital!}

picture of two bottles of not your mothers dry shampoo with an amazon link to purchase 





Does the hospital provide menstrual pads?

picture of a pack of covidien heavy flow pads for postpartum women with an amazon link to purchase 


I never knew so much blood could safely come out of one person. Needless to say, I wasn’t really sure what to expect after giving birth. But, I quickly learned that you can pass clots up to the size of a golf ball and be OK. CRAZY, right? For at least the first week or so, you’ll want to make sure you have enough protection in your underwear to catch anything that may come out. Sorry for the visual, but it’s just reality. These postpartum pads are MUCH larger than the ones you’ll buy at the store, so take what they’re willing to give you.



Here is a sample of the SIZE of the GINORMOUS pads I brought home from the hospital! That big thing in the back… that’s a pad. NO JOKE! I took the big pad, then put the pad with the blue in the middle on top of that, put tucks pad on that, and sprayed the numbing spray on that. It all then went into those mesh white underwear laying on the right side, and that was my magnificent get-up for a week or so.

picture of hospital freebies including large postpartum pads, regular menstrual pads, baby diapers, baby hat, bulb syringe



Read NEXT: The Most Important Baby Gear to Have BEFORE Giving Birth





Does the hospital provide mesh underwear?

picture of a postpartum woman wearing postpartum underwear; includes an amazon link to purchase postpartum underwear

I can’t imagine you’ll be preparing for any type of boudoir shoot right after giving birth, but if you are, these are not the undies you’ll want to take. BUT, without a doubt, they are the best things for helping your lady parts heal. These postpartum mesh underwear are comfortable because they are flexible, and, you can wear them for a few days before they start to fall apart.


Obviously, if they become gross, you’ll want to replace them with another pair, but otherwise, I see no issue in using them for a couple of days. My postpartum nurse also told me you could wash and reuse them. My discharge nurses were always awesome and gave me several extra pairs of postpartum underwear, but I will share a little secret with you that you can buy them online. (I HIGHLY recommended purchasing some to have at home.)






Does the hospital supply nipple cream?

picture of a tube of medela purelan lanolin for sore nipples; includes an amazon link to purchase 

Whether you plan to nurse or not, your boobs will fill up with milk. Of course, the likelihood of your nipples hurting is greatly increased if you are nursing, but you may want to snag some Lanolin nipple cream just in case you end up getting cracked nipples once you’re home. If you are nursing, it’s important that you utilize the lactation consultant the hospital provides. Even though I knew what I was doing after having my first, I would have the lactation consultant come in and double-check my baby’s latch a couple of times before leaving the hospital. At my hospital, they even had Lanolin samples that were awesome.





Does the hospital provide nursing pads?

picture of a box of lansinoh disposable breastfeeding pads; includes an amazon link to purchase 

If you’re reading this and you’re yet to give birth, you may already be using nursing pads. Some women begin to leak breast milk weeks and even months before giving birth. Every mother and every pregnancy can be different.


There are several different styles and materials used for nursing pads. There were some that I really didn’t like and others that I loved. Some have adhesive that can be applied to the inner lining of your nursing bra, while others just sit inside your bra. Either way, take the samples of nursing pads they give you at the hospital. Even if you don’t need them now, you might need them down the road.






Does the hospital supply a waffle pillow?

picture of a waffle pillow with included air pump; also includes an amazon link to purchase

What is a waffle pillow? Great questions! I didn’t know either, and I certainly didn’t know why I might need one for my postpartum care. They look similar to a waffle, hence the name. They are great for alleviating pressure on your postpartum bottom. Especially if you have any kind of postpartum tearing, ask for a waffle pillow or two. We actually ended up taking 2 of these home from the hospital after my last delivery. They were great for the car, the couch, a kitchen chair, anything that is going to apply immediate pressure to your bottom.




Here is where to get started on your Amazon Baby Registry!







Hospitals Provide Awesome Postpartum Care Freebies!

I hope I have answered the questions of, “what do hospitals give you after birth”?



At the end of the day, keep in mind that your insurance is covering all of these things. Don’t be afraid to ask for something if you know you’re going to use it.


I mentioned some things the hospital gave me plenty of and other postpartum care items I ended up needing from the store. At each of my baby deliveries, the discharge nurse always told us to empty out the baby station because whatever was left they would have to throw away. I know every hospital is different, but for us, we weren’t allowed to take those really amazing hospital blankets, but some do, so make sure you ask. 



I hope I have helped you know what you need to pack in your hospital bag and what you can leave at home. Of course, you’ll need more than the things mentioned above, but the things here are what MOST hospitals will provide for both you are your baby.



blessings to you, Lisa







More AWESOME Postpartum Posts:

Postpartum Essentials for New Moms

What to Expect After Giving Birth

What to Wear After Giving Birth

Postpartum Questions Every New Mom Needs to Ask

What to Expect After Giving Birth

Postpartum Leggings for New Moms



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6 thoughts on “What Does the Hospital Supply When You Have a Baby?”

  • The information regarding infant formula is incorrect. At baby friendly hospitals, staff members are not allowed to offer formula unless it’s requested. It is also illegal for all hospitals to give new parents high infant coupons.

    • Thank you for your comment! I changed the wording to make it more clear what I was meaning. I know parents have to request it, but sometimes people think they have to bring their own and I wanted to clarify. My doctor’s office did provide a baby bag that did have coupons in it, which I suppose wasn’t the hospital so I corrected that to clarify also. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts!

      • I have always gone to geisinger and each time I was allowed to take home whatever was under my changing cart. So its not illegal. Nurses told me whatever is left to take and the ready to feed formula was a big help on my ride home. Maybe some states or hospitals dont allow it but in pa geisinger and general hospital both are very generous with what they provide. This post helps many new mothers that may have these questions. Very informative. Thank you for spending the time to explain in detail and providing images for new moms to purchase needed products. Great read for new mothers.

  • i have a large family and i have never had access to wipes. just washcloths. i have never seen the waffle seat. no breast feeding items or lotion. my last birth they wouldnt provide even a breast pump to use.
    They expevt you to bring your own and your boppy too. They seemed very cheap and i expect its only getting worse.

    • Unfortunately, it’s hard to know what any medical facility is going to provide. I hope this list has given you an idea of some helpful ideas that may benefit you.

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