Wednesday, April 17, 2013

What All New Parents Should Know About Changing Diapers

Edith visiting her dad at work.

Changing diapers is literally the crappiest part about being the parent of an infant.

But a few tips when Edith was first born would've made the process cleaner, faster and cheaper.

It's nice and all when parents-to-be learn about breathing exercises or what latest gizmos are out there to soothe a fussy child, but what us newbies really need to know from day one is how to change a diaper.

Why didn't anyone tell me ...

... diaper ruffles go on the outside.

We had no idea. When Edith was a newborn, I just left the ruffles around the legs however they happened to be when I put the diaper on her: inside, outside or some combination. I'm sure we had more leaks than necessary as a result.

... if you start getting lots of leaks and blowouts, it's time to go up a size.

I thought I was putting the diapers on wrong -- either too tight or too loose, I wasn't sure. After all, she was well within the weight limits of the diapers we had. And on that note, ...

... diaper weight limits don't mean much.

Edith tends to start the next size up when she's about a pound short of the minimum recommended weight -- and she's a long and lean baby.

... expensive diapers don't always mean better.

We started out using Pampers Swaddlers -- I'd heard of them, and that's what we got in the hospital. But they're expensive. But all diapers are fairly expensive, and it's difficult to try lots of brands without spending a fortune. (On that note, a neighborhood friend started a business, Miny Moe, which will ship you samples of several types of diapers to give them all a shot -- great idea!) On the other hand, it's worth a few extra dollars if they consistently contain the poop.

We decided to take a chance and try the brand. Now we like them even more than the Swaddlers. Bonus: They're a fraction of the cost of Swaddlers and just as cheap or cheaper than other brands I've looked at (even Target-brand diapers, which often get good reviews), and shipping is free with a purchase of at least $35 -- easy to do when you're going through upwards of 50 diapers a week.

Now stop laughing, all you moms!

It's second nature now, but it sure wasn't at the beginning. Maybe I was especially green behind the ears since before Edith I had changed only one or two diapers my entire life -- and that was one or two more than Paul.

With shrinking families as well as relatives spread out across the country or around the world, however, I suspect many new parents are in the same position I found myself in. Is it rude to tuck a diaper tip sheet into a baby shower gift? I don't know, but it would've come in handy.


  1. This is actually quite helpful, I'm sure! I've changed 0 diapers, I'd be just as clueless to start off!

  2. Thanks for the shout-out Diane!! Never knew have their own brand... will consider adding it when/if Miny Moe expands ^_^

    And don't feel bad, it took me a while to figure out the importance of pulling those damn leg ruffles out!!



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