Diaper Changing Tips


Change your baby in a warm, draft-free place. Keep all diaper supplies together (which you can get on sale), and never leave your baby on a changing table or other elevated surface even for a moment. Falls from changing tables are common, potentially serious, accidents.

Remove most of the bowel movement with the soiled diaper, then wipe the diaper area clean with a commercial baby wipe or (for sensitive skin) a cotton ball dipped in warm water. Wipe girls from front to back to avoid spreading bacteria that might lead to a vaginal or urinary tract infection.

Dry skin thoroughly (blot, don’t rub), paying special attention to skinfolds and creases.

When the baby’s skin is dry, you may wish to apply baby lotion (not oil). Powder is not recommended, since inhaling it can be harmful. If you do use powder, apply a small amount carefully to avoid making “clouds.” Don’t use lotion and powder.

Until the penis of a circumcised baby is healed, apply a little Vaseline with each diaper change.

If you use cloth diapers from a diaper service, they may be delivered prefolded. Neat folding is not as important as finding a method that’s easy for you and comfortable for the baby. When pinning cloth diapers, use diaper pins (not regular safety pins), and place your hand between diaper and baby to avoid the risk of pin pricks.

When putting disposable diapers on your baby, make sure your hands are free of powder or lotion, or the self-stick tabs won’t stick. Avoid plastic or rubberized pants. They trap moisture and contribute to chafing. If you use them, leave them loosely fastened.