Baby diapering 101: Complete guide for new parents

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A newborn baby almost needs about 12-15 diapers a day and that’s why diapering is an important part of both moms and babies daily routine. Diapering your little one might seem complicated as a new parent. But with basic knowledge and little practice you can easily keep your baby clean and dry.

So lets get started!

Getting Ready to baby diapering

Before changing the diaper of your little one gather these important supplies

  • a diaper
  • fasteners and inserts (if you are using cloth diaper)
  • A container of warm water, Cotton balls (for babies with sensitive skin) Clean washcloth or baby wipes
  • An ointment or rash cream for the treatment of rashes.

Make sure that all your supplies are within the reach. Babies must not be left unattended as they might sometimes roll and can spoil the clean surface.


Clean your baby using a wet washcloth, cotton balls or baby wipes. Always make sure that the moment of cleaning should be from front to back (wiping from back to front may lead to (infections). Clean your baby from underneath by lifting his her legs by the ankle. Make sure to clean the creases and thighs as well

For boys keep a clean diaper over their abdomen as exposure to air can make them urinate on you or on any other thing within their range.

Once you have cleaned him pat your little one dry with clean wash cloth and apply the diaper ointment.

Disposable diapering

Disposable diapers offer quick and better absorption and are used by most of the parents. If you are using disposables then;-

  • Open the diaper and slide it under the baby by gently lifting his legs up. The back part of the adhesive strip should be at the level of the belly bottom of your baby.
  • Bring the front part of the diaper up from between the baby’s legs and fasten them with the adhesive tape snugly
  • Make sure that the adhesive tape should not stick on baby’s skin. In Addition make sure that the diaper is fasten not too tight. For that you can do two fingers test, just glide the fingers between the diaper and baby’s skin. If the fingers glide easily its ok.

Here are few extra tips that can help with disposable diapering are:-

  • For newborn babies fold down the waistline of the diaper if their umbilical cord is not fallen yet. This is done to keep it dry and away from infections.
  • If some rashes develops continiously at the diaper opening on legs and waistline it means that the particular diaper brand is sensitive on baby’s skin. make sure to change your diaper brand in such a case.
  • if some marks appears at the legs and waistline of your baby it is because that the particular size of the diaper is tight for your baby. In this case go for a loose fit next time or buy a next size for your baby.
  • Always make sure to wash your hands before and after every diaper change.

Also read- Most absorbing disposable diapers for babies

Cloth diapering

Parents always choose disposables over cloth diapers because it is convenient. But some parents choose cloth diapering because they are environment friendly and proves economical in a long run.

Cloth diapers come in many types from traditional prefold to modern pocket diaper that comes with snaps and velcro. If you choose the prefolds for your newborn there are several ways to fasten them. One of the most common methods is triangle fold.

  • Fold the square cloth in a way to form a triangle. For small babies, you might want to fold the long side of the prefold to ensure a better fit
  • Now place the baby on the diaper by lifting his legs and feet gently from the ankle. Make sure that the point of the triangle always be placed downwards
  • Bring the tip of the diaper up from between the baby’s legs up to belly bottom. Similarly, bring the other two sides up and near to each other on the belly bottom
  • Now fasten all the three tips of the of the diaper with the safety pin

Also read- Complete guide to Cloth diapering a baby

Some quick tips while using cloth diapers for your newborn baby are:-

  • If you are using prefolds then use big safety pins with plastic safety heads. Always put your hand between the baby’s skin and the safety pins.
  • To wash the diapers use detergents that are not loaded with Dyes and fragrances instead use mild and hypoallergenic one. Strong detergents can cause rashes on baby’s sensitive skin leading to irritation.
  • Always put wet diapers directly into the diaper pail. For soiled ones first flush the waste into the toilet and then after put them into the diaper pail.
  • Always wash your hands before and after diapering your newborn baby

Diaper rashes

Rashes are the most common problem babies face during their early stage. A rash is a red irritated bumped area on the skin that generally occurs when the contact of wet and soiled diapers with the skin is long. It is the unwanted acids present in the urine that causes rashes.

Rashes can be treated with the help of ointments and creams but if a rash continues for more than 3 days it may be an infection. In this case, you must take advice from your baby’s doctor for the necessary treatment.

Tips for Treatment of diaper rash

For healing and treatment of the rashes, Keep these tips in mind:-

  • Change your baby’s diaper often and after every bowel moment. This prevent the skin from long contact with wetness (the main cause of diaper rash)
  • Wipe out your baby gently and softly. Rubbing vigorously can irritate the rashes.
  • Be sure that the baby is completely dry before putting on the fresh diaper.
  • Use mild detergents that are dye and fragrance-free for washing cloth diapers. Harsh detergents may also cause diaper rash.
  • Apply rash cream and ointment after every diaper change

Quick tips while diapering a newborn baby

Here are some quick tips while diapering a newborn baby:-

  • Always wash your hands before and after every diaper change.
  • Test a particular brand of the diaper before you stock them. Also, make sure that you never stock up on Newborn size
  • Do not put on the diaper until the baby is completely dry.
  • Always use unscented and dry free baby products.

Diapering is a tricky task as it varies from babies to babies according to their type of skin and other daily factors. But with the knowledge of these basic, you will be a diapering pro in a short time.

Happy Parenting!

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