Apart from feeding and bathing a newborn, getting them out of their dirty diaper is like a task. But this is something that you have to go through every now and then. 

But how to change a diaper? It might seem like a scary task in the beginning, but once you know how to do it, you will be able to do it with your eyes closed. It will become like second nature.  

And your baby is going to provide you with a lot of change to practice. Infants mostly go through eight to ten diapers in a day. That adds up to more than 3,500 diaper changes till they are toilet trained. 

With this article, learn the efficient way to change your baby from a dirty diaper to a clean one. And I have some tips that can help you get through the process easily.  

What Would You Require? 

Before we start, make sure that you have everything you need close to you. Here is a list of things that you would require: 

  • Another set of clothes for the baby in case there is a blowout 
  • Changing pad or a changing table 
  • Diapers (disposable or cloth) 
  • If you have cloth diapers, then you would need pins or use a diaper cover 
  • Ointment or diaper cream 
  • Wipes, cotton balls, or soft clothes 
  • Disposable bags 

Most people use baby wipes to clean the diaper area. However, all newborns have very sensitive skin. In the first few weeks, it is best to use warm water along with cotton balls or soft cloth to prevent any kind of skin irritation. 

Getting wipes that are already moistened with water is another option that you can try. Traditional baby wipes, mainly those that contain alcohol, can be harmful to their skin. It can cause irritation and rashes. 

You have various options for changing the baby, and that includes a changing pad that you can spread on the floor, couch, or bed, or you can use a changing table. Make use of the safety straps and follow the instructions given on the pad to anchor it to the table. 

Ensure that the table you are using is concave in the center, or you can put a changing pad on the table. This is going to prevent the baby from falling off the table when they roll. That can cause serious injuries. 

While a newborn is not going to move much, they will learn how to roll over by the time they reach 4 months of age. And any baby can get their body in motion and fall. Taking safety measures from the beginning is a smart idea befor they injure themselves. 

Step-by-Step Procedure For How to Change a Diaper 

The instructions given below are mostly for changing disposable diapers. But if you are using a cloth diaper, then the basic steps are also going to be the same.  

But apart from that, you will need to fasten and fold the cloth on both sides and use diaper pins. However, there are some cloth diapers that come with fasteners attached to them. 

Get Ready 

To begin with, make sure that your hands are clean. Then, get all the supplies that you are going to need. Ensure that everything is at arm’s reach so you do not have to turn your baby when the baby is on the changing table. 

Take Off the Dirty Diaper 

Lay your baby on the changing surface. Lay them on their back. Unfasten the pins or diaper tabs on both sides. Raise their bottom from the diaper by holding their ankles and lifting them. 

If the diaper is filled with stool, then try using the diaper’s upper half and sweep it to the lower half. Then slide it away. Do not just throw it away; keep it aside so you can throw it away after you are done. But keep it away from the baby’s reach. 

Clean Your Baby’s Skin 

Wipe the baby clean. Gently and thoroughly clean the area with wipes or moistened cotton balls. When you are wiping a vulva, always go from front to back so there are no chances of infection.  

Make sure that you are only cleaning the outer part of the vulva to remove any poop. Similarly, ensure that you clean the area around the penis as well as the scrotum. Keep aside the trash. 

Change Them Into A Clean Diaper 

Get a clean diaper and slide it under their bottom. Ensure the tabs are on the side and under the baby’s butt. These days, most diapers have some kind of indication or marking to identify the front side of the diaper. 

Before you close the diaper, ensure that you point a penis downward so they do not pee out of it. If you have to use any cream or ointment for their treatment or preventing rash, then this is the time. 

Do this step after you have placed the clean diaper so you do not have to clean any cream off the changing table. The American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend using baby powder to prevent health risks. 

After that, close the diaper. Pull the front part in between their legs and then over their stomach. Open the tabs and bring it around the front. Ensure that you snug the diaper properly, but it should not be too tight.  

If you are using cloth diapers, use the snaps attached or pin it close. If you are not using diapers that are made specifically for newborns, then fold the front part of it to avoid causing any irritation to the umbilical stump. 

Finish Up 

Place the baby in a safe place while you clean the mess up. Roll up the soiled diaper firmly, and then wrap the tabs around it. Then, place the diaper in a garbage can, diaper bin, or bag. 

In the case of cloth diapers, drop the poop in the toilet and rinse away the residue. Then, put it in a bin for laundry. Also, clean up the changing surface with a disinfectant to prevent any contamination. Do not forget to wash your and the baby’s hands. 

Wrapping up! 

Learning to do this task might seem a little nerve-wracking in the beginning. Newborns are tiny, and their bodies go through a lot of change while they get accustomed to the world.  

You might be a little scared about hurting your baby or getting it wrong when you start. Parenthood is not an easy task; it can get you overwhelmed and exhausted by these feelings.  

Rest assured, it will not take a lot of time to master the parenting task, as you have to learn a lot of new skills as a new parent. If you think you will be a lot more comfortable if someone demonstrates to you, then ask a nurse to show you how to change a diaper while you are at the hospital. 

If you feel anything is not right or unsure about anything, it is best to call a pediatrician. They will address your concerns and help you. 


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subhasree nag
Subhasree is a content writer who is passionate about traveling, writing, and reading books. In her leisure time, she is seen listening to music and watching web series. Writing along with music and dance are ways in which she expresses herself.

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