Changing a diaper for the first time ?

Welcome to parenthood! Changing a diaper is definitely not the most exciting thing about being a new parent, but for the first few years of your child's life you will be doing it a lot. Here are some guidelines for parents who haven't changed a diaper for a long time, or maybe ever!

Most importantly, safety is your number one priority. If you are changing your baby on an elevated surface, such as a changing table or bed, make sure to keep a hand on the baby at all times. Even if the changing table has a safety strap, always stay within arms reach. Even the youngest infants can wriggle themselves off an elevated surface extremely quickly. If baby does fall, make sure to call your doctor immediately.

Some babies are very active during diaper change time. Some do not like the experience, especially as newborns. You may want to have another person there to distract them, or have a mobile or something for them to focus on during this time. You can also distract the baby by talking or singing to him or her. This can make the experience go much more smoothly for everyone involved.
Step 1 :

The first step is to gather all the necessary supplies. If you will be using a changing table, hopefully it is well stocked with everything you need. You will need within arms reach: a clean diaper opened up and ready to put on, wipes or a wash cloth, diaper rash cream, and a cloth or something to clean up with in case of an accident during changing time.A cloth diaper works great for this. It is helpful to have nearby a change of clothes in case the diaper leaked or an accident during changing time and a trash to dispose of the dirty diaper

Step 2 :

Second, make sure the diaper area is clean and that you have clean hands. Germs and infections are easily spread through diaper changes. If you can't wash your hands with soap and water, clean them off with a diaper wipe. If changing surface is dirty, use a clean changing pad or wipe it down with a wipe first.

Now comes the fun part! Place the baby on the clean changing surface. Remove baby's clothes so you have easy access to the diaper area. You don't need to completely remove all clothes, just make sure they are out of the way. At the very least have from the rib cage down exposed. If baby is wearing socks, you may want to remove them. Babies often kick during diaper changes and those socks can get dirty pretty easily! Open up the diaper the baby has on and survey the damage before removing it.

If the diaper is just wet, you have a pretty easy task ahead of you. If the diaper is dirty as well as wet, clean- up will be a little more difficult. Remove old diaper and place to the side out of reach of baby's kicking legs and moving arms. Gently lift up baby's bottom by the feet and place clean diaper underneath. Make sure the sticky tabs that close the diaper are in the back. Without allowing baby's bottom to touch new diaper, wipe the diaper area with the wipes or washcloths. Make sure to wipe from front to back. You may need more than one wipe if baby is really dirty. If using disposable wipes, put them with the dirty diaper. If you are using reusable wash cloths, put the used ones to the side. Once baby is cleaned off, place baby down on clean diaper.

If you think it is necessary, use diaper rash cream. Some people use it for every diaper change to prevent diaper rash, some use it when needed to clear up diaper rash. Once the cream is applied, you can close up the diaper. Make sure diaper is snug around the stomach and the legs, but not uncomfortable for baby. To check, diaper should be snug, but you should be able to fit a finger between diaper and baby. If the baby still has the umbilical stump, fold diaper under so it does not touch the stump. Finally, get baby dressed again! Now you have a baby with a clean and dry diaper.

Step 3 :

The final step is clean up. Be sure to place baby in safe place during clean up. If someone is available, give baby to them. If not, place baby in crib or other safe place so you can clean up. First, throw away the dirty diaper and disposable wipes. If needed, clean off changing surface or dispose of changing pad. Finally, wash your hands thoroughly.

As a new parent, you will be changing a lot of diapers over the next few years! If you follow these steps, the first few diaper changes should go smoothly. And before you know it, changing a diaper will be like second nature!

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