How to change your baby’s diaper properly
This post was created in collaboration with midwife Vivian.
Click here to read further information about midwife Vivian.
In this article you will learn tips and tricks on the subject of baby care. This includes the basics of swaddling, soothing massages for your little treasure and the use of an ideal sunscreen.
Proper swaddling: Gentle protection for your baby’s bottom
Every time you change your baby’s diaper, the diaper area must be cleaned and, if necessary, treated with ointment. The skin here is particularly exposed to moisture and many bacteria – the result can be redness and skin irritation.
For daily cleaning of this area, we recommend warm water and a care oil. After cleaning, your baby’s bottom should always be dried thoroughly.
When and how should diapers be changed? What products do I need? Many questions that young parents ask themselves and that probably also interest you.
How to properly swaddle your baby?
You can proceed according to the following instructions:
- Turn on a heat lamp above the changing table during colder seasons
- Remove the soiled diaper
- Gently clean the diaper area – either with a damp washcloth, an oily cloth or a special baby wipe. For girls, always wipe from front to back to prevent fecal bacteria from entering the vagina.
- When swaddling boys, do not pull back the foreskin, as it is stuck to the glans. Always cover the penis with a diaper or cloth. This will prevent you from being peed on
- Let the skin dry or gently pat it dry
- Apply a nourishing diaper cream if needed
- Change your baby into a new diaper
Also, you should never leave your baby unattended on the changing table. Therefore, it is advisable to store all necessary products within reach or to have them ready before diapering.
To protect baby’s skin from irritation and rash when changing diapers, here’s what you should do:
- Change the diaper frequently, because dry diapers prevent skin irritation
- The diaper should not be too tight – it fits perfectly when there is still a finger of space between the belly and the diaper
- Let your baby’s skin dry well after cleaning the diaper area or gently pat it dry
- Let your baby kick and move around without a diaper as often as possible, so that plenty of air gets to his or her bottom
- To prevent rashes, zinc cream for babies can be applied to the diaper area. The ointment protects the skin by forming a barrier against moisture and excretions
- If the redness does not disappear after three days at the latest, contact your midwife
Baby massage during diapering: To soothe the baby and the skin
You can give your baby extra love through intense physical contact, such as massages. This is especially nice in the first months of life, because you can give your baby full attention and body contact. You can integrate the baby massage well into your daily routine – for example, when changing diapers.
With the help of a massage you can soothe and relax your baby.
For the massage you need a towel on which you can lay your baby, a nourishing baby oil, everything for diapering and fresh clothes. The optimal room temperature for a massage is 23-24°C – a heat lamp or a fan heater can be helpful.
Place your baby on a towel with a pad. Watches and jewelry can get in the way and hurt the baby’s delicate skin – so better take them off. Warm your hands and the oil for the massage so they are nice and warm. The oil will help your hands glide more gently over the baby’s skin.
- Put some baby oil in your palms and warm it up by rubbing your hands together.
- Gently massage the oil into your baby’s skin. Start with the feet.
- Massage each toe in a gentle circular motion, pressing your thumbs gently against the soles of the feet.
- Move to the legs and gently press the calves and thighs.
- To massage the chest and abdominal area, place both hands flat on the center of the body. Very gently move your hands to the side along the ribs, as if you were smoothing the pages of a book.
- Bring your hands to the center in a heart-shaped motion without taking them off the baby’s body.
- The same sequence of movements helps to relax your baby.
- The baby massage should not last longer than 5-10 minutes for babies