Like it or not, there’s no escaping the fact that you are going to have to change your baby’s diaper. A lot. Even with early potty training, you’re looking forward to at least eighteen months of poop and pee, which equates to over 2,700 changes. Yes, really. Plus it’s one of those tasks that doesn’t seem to get easier with practice.
Check out our hacks to try and make changing time a little bit smoother:
They happen to every baby as some point in their life, usually quite unexpectedly. The first time it happens, you’re a bit overwhelmed. What do you do with all the mess, and how on earth do you get your baby’s clothes off without making it even worse?! Where do you even start?!
There may be some times where the level of devastation is so great that the clothes are beyond reasonable washing. In these cases, cutting the clothes off and chucking them away is totally acceptable, and can help you salvage some of your sanity.
Keeping a full change kit in your most-used rooms means that you’re always prepared for emergency changes. Make sure you have a couple of diapers, wipes, bags and a mat or towel available; you never know when you’re going to need it.
Diaper cream and baby powder are pretty much essential for most changes, but they do get everywhere and can be difficult to wash off your hands and clothes. Use the pinky of your non-dominant hand to apply the cream, so you’re less likely to spread it too liberally. Alternatively, you can use a Q-tip or popsicle stick for application. Baby powder can be tricky since you just shake it out, but if you keep the bottle low and shake gently, you should be able to avoid a giant cloud.
Contrary to popular belief, both boys and girls can have sprinkler pee when you take their diaper off, especially as newborns. Have a flannel or towel nearby to cover them up as soon as you remove their dirty diaper, or have the next diaper ready to swap. That should give them enough time to get the pee out and prevent a flooding situation while you get the rest of the change in order.
Try to split up the responsibility of changing dirty diapers, it’s a dirty job and it gets old pretty fast. Unfortunately, it must be done no matter what. Try not to let things get tense on who’s turn it is, and make a game out of determining who’s up for the job. Rock Paper Scissors may be your best friend here, especially if there is a DEFCON 5 diaper situation unless one of you volunteers to take one for the team. Whoever is up to bat, make sure you’re both prepared for any situation, and you both have practice.
When your baby works out how to take their own diaper off, there’ll be no stopping them. Try putting it on while they’re distracted instead since putting it on backwards would only result in a leak and uncomfortable diaper. There will be times you find them running around naked and liberated, just have diapers readily available during this phase, and hope you can catch them before nature calls!
If your baby suffers from diaper rash or just happens to poop a lot, cleaning them can be quite a delicate operation. Even the gentlest of wipes can cause your baby to be sore, and lead you both to being upset. Keep a small spray bottle of water near your change kit so that you can spritz their bottom after a poop. This should loosen things up enough that wiping is much quicker, and utilizes less wipes or harsh materials on their sensitive bottom.
Changing diapers is never going to be a highlight of parenthood, it’s just one of those necessary evils that have to be endured! As long as you’re prepared and patient, everything will go just fine, even after an explosion.