OK. So it's not the most fun part of being a Dad. But keeping your new model clean and comfortable is important, and that means changing diapers.
Yeah, it's smelly sometimes, but you'll get used to it. Millions of people have done this job throughout history. You can too.
Down and dirty diapering
- Get everything you need together beforehand, clean diaper, wipes (or damp washcloth) and maybe a plastic container of warm water.
- Lay the baby down gently on the change surface, supporting her head. If you lay her down too fast she may reach up as if she thinks she's falling. That's OK. Just do it a little slower next time.
- Unfasten the tabs, lift the baby's legs up gently by grasping both ankles together in one hand, and slide the diaper out.
- Clean her off with wipes or with a cloth and warm water, plus a gentle soap for the "big" jobs
- Girls - wipe from front to back.
- Boys - when washing, treat the penis the way you'd want yours to be treated. If your little guy is uncircumcised DO NOT PULL BACK FORESKIN. It doesn't retract yet. It will eventually do that on it's own.
- Babies often pee when you take their diaper off, so if you're changing a boy keep that penis covered with a cloth, or look out!
- Lift up the baby's legs again and slide the new diaper under.
- Tabs come from the back of the diaper and fasten to the front.
- Cloth diapers need to be rinsed in the toilet and stored in the diaper pail.
Don't forget to dispose of the disposables, and see if you can some of the poop out of the diaper first. You won't always be able to do this, especially with newborns. But the more baby poop that goes in the toilet rather than the landfill, the better.
Do I need diaper cream?
You don't need diaper cream every time you change a baby. You might need it to protect the baby's skin if he gets diaper rash. However, the more important thing to concentrate on is making sure you really clean him up well. Urine can irritate the skin.
If your baby has diaper rash, it is a good idea to give his butt a little air time sometimes.
Avoiding diaper rash is one of the reasons you should not go too long between "oil changes."
It may take a little while for you to get the hang of this. You just have to try it. Don't be afraid. You won't break her if you lift up her little legs a bit too roughly. Just pay attention to how she reacts to what you do and learn from it.
One thing to remember is to never leave a baby alone on a change table. Even newborns have been known to roll off change tables.