Friday, November 03, 2006

How to Change a Diaper

By Brandi M. Seals

You might think that changing a diaper is a pretty straight forward affair. You remove the old one and put a new one on. But if you have never changed a diaper before, you may have a few questions that you are too embarrassed to ask. Follow this simple guide to changing a diaper and you will be a pro in no time.

How to Change a Diaper

1.) Gather everything you need and make sure it is nearby.

2.) Lay the baby on her back on whatever surface you will be changing her on. Just make sure it is a flat surface. If you are using a changing table with safety straps, go ahead and use them. They will help in case your child begins to fall.

3.) Remove the old diaper. Start by unfastening the diaper tabs. Now raise the child's bottom off the diaper by grabbing around the ankles and gently lift.

4.) Slide the used diaper out from under the baby's bottom. Place it nearby but make sure it is out of reach for the child. Babies have been known to make poo art or even throw the diapers. Keep the diapers out of reach so there are no problems.

5.) Time to wipe. If you are changing a girl, remember it is important to wipe from front to back. Doing otherwise can lead to urinary tract infections which is caused when bacteria (usually from the rectum) get into the urethra. You will want to cleanse the area thoroughly using baby wipes or a wet washcloth. Some babies have sensitive skin and the alcohol in baby wipes can irritate them. Keep an eye on that or just use damp wash clothes.

6.) Don't know what to do with the dirty baby wipe? Place it on top of the dirty diaper so that it can be disposed of after the changing.

7.) Slide a clean diaper under the baby's bottom. Make sure the diaper is going the right way. If the diaper lacks a design that easily indicates the front of the diaper, look for the tabs. They should be on the part that goes under the baby's bottom.

8.) Before closing up shop you will want to apply any creams or ointments you are using to clear up rashes if one is present. If you want to use powder, you would use that now.

9.) Close the diaper. Pull the front of the diaper up over the baby's belly. Pull the tabs open and bring them around to fasten to the front of the diaper. If your baby is a newborn and the diaper is up around the umbilical stump, you will need to fold the diaper down to avoid irritating the area.

10.) Move your child if he is on a table or elevated surface, then dispose of the dirty diaper. Use the tabs to wrap the diaper up and secure its contents inside. Toss in the trash.

11.) Keep things sanitized by washing the changing table or surface you used. Do not forget to wash your hands. You do not want to get germs on yourself or your baby.

Diaper Changing Tips
1.) Do not make the diaper too tight. Avoiding leaks is great, but if you go too tight, the pressure on the baby's stomach could lead to spit up problems.

2.) Never leave your child unattended on any elevated surface, even if they have safety straps. Accidents do happen. If you are always nearby, you can prevent your child from rolling off.

3.) If you do not want to use a changing table, invest in a changing pad. You can use them on the floor, on the bed or any surface you want. Remember to sanitize it just like you would a changing table.

4.) If your baby has a rash that just does not seem to want to go away or one that is particularly painful, contact the doctor for help. Always be on the look out for red and raw looking skin.

Diaper Changing Supplies You Will Need
-diapers
-baby wipes or a wet wash cloth
-any ointments you will need to for treating rashes
-baby lotion or powder if you wish

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