How to Change a Diaper

diaper changeWhether you choose cloth or disposable diapers, the steps are pretty much the same. To begin, make sure you have everything you need nearby.

  • An unfolded diaper with the tabs pointing out
  • Wipes or soft paper towels and warm water
  • Diaper-rash cream, if needed

1. Place your baby on their back on the changing pad, and if you are using a changing table, don’t forget to use your safety straps!

2. Release the tabs, and raise your child’s bottom by gently grabbing their ankles and lifting.

3. Slide the used diaper out from underneath your baby, and place it out of their reach, leaving it open if possible.

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4. For newborns, cleanse the previously diapered area using a soft paper towel dipped in warm water, as wipes can irritate their sensitive skin. Most pediatricians recommend waiting to use wipes until your baby is about two months old. For girls, it is important to remember to wipe from front to back to prevent infection. For boys, you may want to place a folded paper towel or another clean diaper between his legs to avoid any surprise showers!

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5. For babies older than two months, cleanse the previously diapered area using baby wipes. Don’t forget to wipe the areas “hidden” by rolls of skin. For girls, be sure to wipe from front to back to avoid infection.

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6. Put all dirty paper towels or wipes inside the dirty diaper.

7. Slide a clean diaper underneath your baby, tabs to the back. Disposable diapers usually have a colorful picture around the waistband to indicate which part should be placed in front.

8. Apply diaper rash cream, if necessary.

9. Pull the front of the diaper up over their belly, and pull the tabs open and around from the back to fasten in the front. The diaper should be snug to avoid leaks but be careful not to make it too tight. For newborns, be sure to fold the front of the diaper down before fastening the tabs until the cord has completely fallen off.

10. Wrap up the dirty diaper, fastening it together with the tabs, and discard.

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How to Change a Diaper

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36 comments

  1. Profile photo of Courtney Courtney says:

    Yay should be simple to teach to the daddy this way :)

  2. Profile photo of Sara Sara says:

    Caring for his circumcision was a lot easier than I thought; my biggest problem is remembering to keep him covered when changing his diaper- I got peed on 3 times today! Lol..

  3. Profile photo of Sara Sara says:

    I have never been a pro at changing diapers and until his circumcision heals it will be a challenge…

  4. Profile photo of Jennie Jennie says:

    This is a great break down.

  5. Profile photo of AmyC AmyC says:

    I’ve worked in child care for yrs, but a list like this would probably be good for my husband to have on hand 😉

  6. Profile photo of Lilly Lilly says:

    For babies who do not yet crawl, it’s actually recommended to roll them to the side rather than lifting from their ankles. Lifting from the ankles can cause their spine to shift, and can trap gas, making colic worse.

  7. Profile photo of Lilly Lilly says:

    Vaseline is a petroleum product, which means it’s full of chemicals and not very good for baby’s skin, as it doesn’t allow the skin to breathe. Coconut oil is great for diaper cream, or even breastmilk! :)

  8. Profile photo of JamJam JamJam says:

    coconut oil is my personal fav (unrefined) its natural and works like a charm on most skin issues

  9. Profile photo of JamJam JamJam says:

    This is the first ive heard of it as well. and no you REALLY dont have to wait 2 months to use wipes its a suggestion because i guess the wipes can irritate their skin

  10. This was great for my husband to read. He had never changed a diaper before.

  11. Profile photo of Valerie Valerie says:

    I’ve never heard of that either.. None of my doctors have told me of this, or friends/family. Guess I’ll have to do some research!

  12. Profile photo of Valerie Valerie says:

    It sounds simple enough. Until that little one starts squirming and poo gets everywhere, and you dont want to hold them to tight for fear of hurting them. Changing diapers can be very challenging! lol

  13. I would use vitamin A&D ointment. It wipes from the skin easier and is less harsh on baby bottoms :)

  14. Get used to alot and i mean ALOT of laundry lol

  15. I use wet paper towels on myself ( i feel cleaner that way) as opposed to wipes because i can control the temperature, dampness and pretty much everything about it. There just more comfortable (AND WAY CHEAPER!)

  16. Profile photo of marifie marifie says:

    oh really i have to wait 2 months to use a wipes? . .

  17. Profile photo of SammysMOMMY SammysMOMMY says:

    waiting to use wipes…really?

  18. Profile photo of Jeanetta Jeanetta says:

    I didn’t know most pediatricians recommend waiting to use wipes until your baby is about two months old.

  19. I didn’t know that about the wipes.

  20. Profile photo of snearling214 snearling214 says:

    Since when to wipes irritate skin?! I have a huge family with lots of kids and have never once heard that before!

  21. Profile photo of ErinF ErinF says:

    Good information. I’ve managed to have never changed a diaper before, so it’ll be good not to feel so lost when the time comes! I’m planning on cloth diapering to save money.

  22. Profile photo of Grace Grace says:

    never heard before that wipes irritate skin, even sensitive ones?

  23. Profile photo of Amanda Amanda says:

    great tips. love the idea from leeana too

  24. Profile photo of Valerie Valerie says:

    some people use qtips also

  25. Profile photo of Leeana Leeana says:

    For step 8, you can also use vasoline if you dont have diaper cream. Also, to avoid the cream all over your fingers, I usually put in on the diaper after baby is on it and hold the diaper and will wipe the cream on baby. This way less mess on my fingers :)

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