Changing nappies

A really good way to get involved and spend time with your baby is to change their nappy. Your baby will need her nappy changed hundreds of times during the first year so make the most of this time. It's a great way to bond, especially when you look directly at your baby and talk to her.

You can use either disposable or washable cloth nappies:

  • Disposable nappies are more expensive but they save time and don't need to be washed.
  • Check the size of the nappies to make sure they are right for your baby. You don't want a leaky nappy.
  • Washable cloth nappies are cheaper to use and friendlier to the environment but they need to be washed which takes time and is extra work. There are nappy laundering services but that adds to the cost.

Things you'll need

  • Changing mat or clean towel to use on the floor
  • Clean dry nappy Cotton wool, bowl of warm water and a small towel Nappy cream if needed
  • A bag for the used nappies

Nappy changing in 6 simple steps

  • Lay your baby down on her back on the changing mat
  • Unfasten clothes and remove dirty nappy
  • Hold your baby's legs and feet up and wipe her bottom and genitals clean with cotton wool and water
  • Put on clean nappy
  • Place your baby in her cot or somewhere safe
  • wash your hands

Top tips

  • Always wash your hands after changing your baby Never leave your baby unattended, especially if you are using a changing station as they could roll and fall off. You won't know that your baby has learned how to roll over until she does it for this first time, so don't take the chance.
  • Always wipe baby girls from front to back to prevent infections.
  • If you can, leave your baby to kick without a nappy for a short period as this can prevent nappy rash.
Last Updated: 14 October 2014
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