Diapering A Baby – Steps, Tips and More

7 min read

Written by Aparna Hari

Aparna Hari

Diapering A Baby

The birth of a baby comes with many responsibilities, one of which is diapering a baby. As new parents many questions arise in their minds, the main being the process of changing a diaper. This is a herculean task and requires a lot of practice to become a pro. Apart from this, it is even important to know the frequency of changing diapers, recognizing a soiled vs clean diaper etc.

The concept of diapering is important and comes with a lot of curiosity as well. Queries related to the correct way of holding the baby and, whether it is important to wipe or wash the baby before a fresh diaper is put on him are some common questions. A few other issues related to nappy rashes, rashes cream, type of diaper, etc. also top this list. It is important for the parents to master the art of diapering, which is as significant as feeding or sleeping well.

In This Article

What Will You Need For Diapering a Baby?

Diapering A Baby Steps

Babies need a diaper change regularly. It could be at home, a play area, a shopping mall, a trip etc. This needs the parents to be always ready with a few essential items to make their job easy and smooth. If doing this at home, these essential items should be either near or in the storage space of the diaper station.

Here is this the list of things you will need handy for diapering your baby.

1. Get Ready

Here are a few things you should keep ready and handy before changing your baby’s diaper.

a) Diapers

First and foremost, for diapering, it is important to buy the correct diaper. Choosing a diaper with so many companies and varieties is difficult and confusing. The easy part to remember is that the priority should be the comfort of the baby when buying one. A few pointers to remember are

  • Consider buying the type of diaper your baby feels most comfortable in.
  • Sizing is crucial, Fitting should not be too loose or tight.
  • It should be easy to use.
  • Choose diapers with high or normal absorbent levels depending on your baby’s requirements.
  • The material used in making it should be skin-friendly and result in no discomfort to the baby.
  • While diapers which emit fragrance may be good, the smell indicates the use of chemicals and such diapers must be avoided.
  • No matter the brand, always pick diapers that provide the highest comfort levels to your little one.

[Read : How To Pick The Best Diaper To Ensure Your Baby’s Good Health]

b) Diaper Changing Station

Diaper changing station is a good option to avoid diaper changing on the beds. One can buy a new diaper station or use any old piece of furniture for diaper changing but with sturdiness and storage space to keep the essential stuff. Apart from that, the table should be one where the mother or the caretaker can stand comfortably and change, preferably the one with side rims so that the baby does not fall.

c) Diaper Changing Mat

This is totally optional and not used by all parents. It is an accessory used as per preference by the parents. Using a mat helps in keeping the diaper changing station clean.

d) Wet Wipes or Cotton Balls

Wet baby wipes are very handy and portable. They offer great help in cleaning a messy baby. Whether the baby has peed or has pooped, one can easily use them and dispose of in the bin. It is better to dip cotton balls in lukewarm water or wipes that are non-allergic. It is also important to wipe the area with a clean and soft cloth after cleaning.

e) Diaper Rash Cream and Moisturizer

Diaper rash creams are specially formulated to create a barrier between the feces that accumulate in the diaper and your baby’s skin. Routinely using creams and moisturizers keep the moisture locked-in, keeps your baby’s skin from infections, and creates a safety barrier. Use branded products and avoid products that have additional fragrances as they may irritate your baby’s skin.

[Read : How To Choose The Right Diaper Rash Cream For Your Baby?]

f) A Trash Can

A trash can is necessary to dispose of the diapers. The diaper pail can be a regular one or the latest one with an odour control feature. Always try to use a waste bin that has a foot-pedal option. This will avoid the necessity of bending down to every time you have to throw away a solid diaper.

g) Additional Clothes and Napkins

Babies can get very messy and so it is ideal to always keep extra pair of clothes inside or near to the diaper changing station. This also prevents the rush of running to get clothes every time you need them.

2. Take Off The Diaper

Take Off The Diaper

Changing a diaper needs practice and care. It is a simple procedure yet must be handled deftly Given below are some of the basic steps that one must keep in mind for smooth diapering of a baby.

  • Be ready with all the things you will need.
  • Get the baby where the diaper needs to be changed, whether it is a bed, cot, mat, or a station used for diaper changing.
  • A changing mat can be spread on the station and then the baby can be placed on it. This helps in creating less mess and allows to manage things in a better manner.
  • Now either hold the baby properly or strap them well to secure them.
  • Always remember to keep a hold on the baby every time you change the diaper.
  • Replace the soiled diaper with a fresh one.
  • Always sanitize the hands and untie the diaper if soiled.
  • Now fold the diapers top part of the diaper which is under the baby’s bottom. This can be done by lifting the baby a little, and then refold it and then discard to the trash bin.
  • In case the baby wears a pant-style diaper, you can easily pull it out like a pant by holding the baby’s legs in an upward direction if the need be.

3. Clean Your Baby’s Skin

After removing the diaper, you must clean your baby’s skin to remove any traces of feces and reduce the chances of skin infections

  • Always use wet wipes or cotton balls that are soaked in lukewarm water for cleaning the bottoms and front area of the baby in a very gentle manner.
  • Also, widen the legs for cleaning the area between the thighs of the baby.
  • Now this diaper area should be pat dry with a soft and clean cloth.
  • Only when totally dried, apply nappy rash cream or moisturizer before putting on a fresh diaper.

4. Put on a Fresh Diaper

After sanitizing the hands, the baby should be made to wear a fresh diaper.

  • Ensure it is tight enough to prevent any leakages
  • It must not be too tight also as it can prevent airflow and circulation.
  • The umbilical cord does not get detached for a few babies after birth for a few days, in such a case special diaper must be used.
  • In case it is a regular cloth diaper, it is good to fold it downwards. This also helps in keeping the clip of the umbilical cord on the outer side of the diaper.

4. Finish up

You are almost at the end of the diaper changing process

  • If in the whole process of changing the diaper, if the baby’s clothes get dirty, you must change them too.
  • Now place the baby in the cot or the crib safely.
  • Wash your hands should be properly after changing diapers to prevent infection.

How Often Should You Consider Changing Baby Diaper?

How Often Should You Consider Changing Baby Diaper

This totally depends on the diaper type. In the case of using a super-absorbent diaper vs a regular one, the former can stay overnight and does not require a change unless it is completely soiled.

Experts however advise changing a newborn’s diaper after every two to three hours or as need be. Little babies urinate at regular intervals and even pass stool multiple times a day. Other health reasons that must be borne in mind to change the diaper are as follows:

  • Diaper if left for too long results in a diaper rash.
  • A pooped diaper, if not changed immediately, can cause irritation to the skin.
  • If the bacteria are left for too long, it can result in a bladder infection.
  • A soiled diaper if not replaced can result in leakage, spreading to clothes and nearby items like a cot, seat, or crib.

[Read : Diaper Rashes]

Top 5 Diaper Changing Tips For Moms

Experts list a few tips that are helpful for the old as well as new moms. These tips are helpful for changing the diaper in an efficient manner and maintaining proper hygiene.

  1. The girls diaper area should always be cleaned from the front to the back area to prevent the poop from entering the genitals of the baby and reducing the chances of infections.
  2. In case changing diapers for a boy baby, the penis should always be covered with any cloth to prevent the pee from becoming a fountain.
  3. when putting a fresh diaper, point the penis in a downward direction to prevent any leakage.
  4. The diaper area should always be dry before the cream is applied, or a fresh diaper is put on. Use water-based wipes. It is not a good idea to use alcohol wipes.
  5. Be prudent and keep a lookout for rashes and marks once the diaper is removed.

Thus, the process of diapering a baby is important for the parents, and they should learn all aspects related to it. Diapering along with feeding and putting the baby to sleep makes life smoother and more comfortable.


1. Is it Safe to Use Baby Powder and Diaper Creams?

Diaper creams are safe for the baby, but baby powder is not advisable as it can irritate the baby’s delicate skin.

2. Should I Change a Poopy Diaper if the Baby is Sleeping?

It is important to change a poppy diaper immediately even when the baby is asleep else there are chances for the baby to get infections, rashes, and other potential skin issues.

Read Also: Cloth or Disposable Diapers?

Aparna Hari,MBA in Marketing,P.G. Diploma in Human Resource Management from IGNOU Bachelor of Sciences (Home Science) from Nagarjuna University

Her experience in impactful writing combined with her background in Home Sciences makes Aparna the perfect candidate for content writing in the pregnancy and parenting niche.Read more.

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