About Baby Diapers

You first choice in diapers is between disposable and fabric types. Most parents now opt for disposable, but a greater consciousness of environment issues has led many parents to reconsider the virtues of fabric diapers, which creates less waste. Yet the issue is not clear cut: the detergents required to clean fabric diapers can be viewed as pollutants to the water supply, and the energy required to wash them might also be regarded as wasteful. While fabric diapers work out cheaper than disposables in the long run, you need to consider the increased electricity bills for frequent washing machine runs and the cost of your time. This much is clear: providing that you change the diaper as frequently as us necessary and that you observe the basic rules of hygiene, your baby will be happy whichever type you choose.

Disposable Diapers

Disposable diapers make diaper changing as simple as it can be. They’re easy to put on- no folding, no pins, mo plastic pants- and can be discarded when they are wet or dirty. Disposables are convenient when you are traveling, since you need fewer of them and less space to change in; and you don’t have to carry home wet, smelly diapers to be washed. You’ll need a constant supply, so buy them in large batches once a week to avoid carrying huge loads with your daily shopping. Some stores will deliver diapers.

Never flush disposable diapers down the toilet since they inevitably get stuck at the S-bend. Instead, put the dirty diaper in a strong plastic bag, and make sure the bag is firmly secured at the neck before you throw it out.

Fabric Diapers

Although fabric diapers are initially more expensive than disposables, they work out cheaper in the long run. Fabric diapers involve much more work than disposables because they have to be rinsed, sterilized, washed, and dried after use. You’ll need a minimum of 24 diapers to ensure that you always have enough clean ones, but the more diapers you can buy the less often you’ll have to do the washing. When buying fabric diapers, choose the best quality that you can afford. They’ll last longer and so be better value in the long run. Another advantage is that they’ll be more absorbent, and therefore more comfortable for your baby.

You can fold towelling diaper squares in several different ways, depending on your baby’s size and needs. They are very absorbent, so they are good for using at night, even if you have opted for disposables during the day.

Shaped towelling diapers are T-shaped, and have a triple-layered panel in the center for extra absorbency. Their shape makes them more straightforward to put on, and they fit the baby more neatly.

If you are using fabric diapers, you’ll need diaper liners to go with them. Choose the one-way variety: these let urine pass through but remain dry next to the baby’s skin, minimizing the risk of a sore bottom caused by friction or moisture. Liners prevent the diaper itself from becoming badly soiled; they can be lifted out with any feces and simply flushed away. You will also need at least 12 special diaper pins and six pairs of plastic pants to prevent wet or dirty diapers from soiling the baby’s clothes or bedding.

There is also a type of fabric diaper on the market that offers all the features and convenience of disposables but is machine washable. It is made of several layers of absorbent fabric, shaped to fit, with an anti-leak outer layer, and has secure Velcro closing tabs and elasticized legs.

Girl’s Diapers

A girl tends to wet the diaper at the center, or toward the back if she is lying down.

¨          Disposable daytime and night time diapers are designed differently to take account of where a baby wets the diaper, with the padding thickest in the place it is needed most.

¨          You may like to buy frilly or decorative pants to cover fabric diapers; these look pretty under a dress for a special occasion.

Boy’s Diapers

A boy tends to wet the front of the diaper. Boy’s disposables are designed to allow for this, with extra padding toward the front of the diaper.

¨          Fold fabric diapers so that more of the fabric is at the front, particularly at night.

¨          Boys often urinate when they are being changed, so cover the penis with several tissues or a spare clean diaper as you take off the dirty one.

¨          Always tuck the penis down when putting on a clean diaper to avoid urine escaping from the top of the diaper.

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Diaper Changing Details

Baby’s tender skin gets a lot of wear and tear in the diaper area. Try to keep it clean, dry and comfortable.

Basic diaper changing steps

Have all your supplies at hand, including clothing, just in case.

Open the old diaper, and if baby has soiled, use a tissue to clean the bulk of the bowel movement into the diaper. Roll it up and reseal to contain the mess.

Wash your baby’s bottom with mild soap and lukewarm water or a no-alcohol wipe and rinse thoroughly. Baby girls should be washed and dried from front to back, to prevent urinary tract infections.

If your baby is just wet, rinse the area without soap. Too much soap can dry out the skin.

Slide the new diaper under baby’s bottom, with tabs the tabs at the back.

Pat your baby’s bottom dry. Make sure the skin is completely dry, even in the creases.

Apply a thin film of petroleum jelly or zinc oxide ointment, to provide a protective water-repellent barrier on the skin.

Fasten the diaper snugly, sticking the back tabs to the front.

Rinse dirty cloth diapers in the toilet and store in the diaper pail until wash time. Some communities now provide recycling for disposable diapers.

Diaper rash prevention

Some babies are extra sensitive and prone to diaper rash. To help prevent rashes:

Keep baby as dry as possible by changing frequently. You may need to change her in the middle of the night, even if she is sleeping through.

Avoid potential irritants like scented soaps and lotions. Perfumes in disposable diapers may also cause a reaction.

Cloth diapers may retain traces of detergent or ammonia. Try adding a half cup of vinegar to the rinse.

Plastic diaper covers hold in heat; if you use cloth diapers, try breathable covers.

Diaper rash treatment

Diaper rash often begins as a mild redness. Left untreated, it can become very painful.

If your baby has a rash, use no soap, only lukewarm water to wash his bottom and apply a medicated diaper rash ointment once the skin is perfectly dry.

Exposure to the air helps, so lay your baby on a towel with a bare bottom several times a day.

If the rash is very red and inflamed, or isn’t responding to your home care, see your doctor. It may be caused by a yeast infection and require special medication.

by Holly Benneett

diaper cake

Diaper Cake

Unique Diaper Cake

Safe Infant Sleep

Over 20 years of studies have identified numerous risk factors for SIDS, resulting in a long list of safety guidelines for new parents.

Today parents are told to place the baby on his back in a crib that meets crib standards, preferably in the parents’ room until the baby is six months old. The biggest risk factor with other soft furnishings is a cluttered crib. Some babies who died of SIDS were found with their beads covered. That led to the advice to avoid duvets, and heavy blankets. And it is very important that the crib is not overcrowded. It makes sense to follow the expert consensus to keep pillows and stuffed toys out of the crib.

Put your baby on her back for sleep from birth. More recent research shows that the biggest reduction in risk of SIDS is from back sleeping. The only reason for a baby not to sleep on her back would be due to certain health, or when she gets to the age when she can roll over onto her tummy by herself and seems to prefer that. If you feel that your baby simply cannot sleep on her back, it’s best to talk it over with a health professional.

High percent of SIDS deaths now occur in babies whose mothers smoked during pregnancy. Exposure to second-hand smoke in the first months of life also increases the risk. Get help to quit if you or your partner is smoker. Second hand smoke is harmful for anyone, particularly baby. Don’t let anyone else smoke around the baby either.

Many experts believe that breastfeeding probably reduces the risk of SIDS, but the evidence has been too ambiguous to draw firm conclusions. The bottom line is for a small number of babies, breastfeeding probably does reduce the risk of SIDS, but there are more important reasons to breastfeed.

The idea of room sharing is not controversial. It was easy to advise parents to have babies in their room for the first six months. Research shows that baby who died of SIDS were less likely than other babies to be given slept in a crib or bassinet in their parents’ room on the night they died. If a crib or newborn bassinet fits in your room, go for it.

Lots of parents share a bed with their babies. For some, it’s part of their parenting philosophy. For others, it’s a convenience. Sharing bed is risky in the context of other risk factors, especially smoking, alcohol and illegal drugs. If you’re a non-smoking, sober breast feeder with firm mattress, and you take sensible precautions to make sure your baby is protected from falls, getting her head covered by blankets or pillows, and getting wedged between the mattress and bed frame or walls, whether or not you share a bed with your baby is your call.

SIDS – Sudden infant death syndrome

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Make Infant Night Sleeping and Nursing Easy

Because the newborn baby’s biological clock hasn’t established yet, they may wake you frequently during the night. And baby’s crying and screaming can make new parents very exhausted. Most of the new parents are struggling with the night nursing issue. In fact, if new parents can prepare baby’s night necessaries in advance and have knowledge of how to respond to baby’s sudden events, night nursing could be easier.

If you are struggling with the night nursing issue, here has some tips and advices from experienced parents may help.

Some experienced parents give me the inspiration to write down these useful night nursing tips.

Infant Sleep

Infant Sleep

Knowing the possible events may occur during the night nursing:

1, Infant is hunger or thirst

2, Infant suppress urine or has damp diaper or bed

3, Infant feels too hot or too cold

4, Infant is bitten by the mosquito or other insects

5, Bad sleeping position causes difficult breathing

6, Sudden sickness

Controlling the temperature to create good sleep environment

1. Window: Open the window to get some fresh air, and then close it before sleep.

2. Crib: Don’t set crib under the window or the air conditioner.

3. Clothes and bedding: Don’t let your baby go to sleep naked even in the hot summer, protect the baby’s belly with some light baby blankets. Depending on the temperature, put on light-weight cotton sleeper or heavy fleece sleeper.

4. Air conditioner: The wind direction should not toward baby’s bed and as far as possible. Adjust the air conditioner to the natural wind mode or breeze status during the sleep.

Preparing baby night necessaries in advance

1, Feeding supplies: Breast milk feeding is more convenient. Lying down is ideal for night feedings; when baby is small, you may need to lay her on a pillow so the baby can reach your nipple. Or you may store expressed milk in the refrigerator. This will free you from feeling tired down by breast-feeding, and allow your baby to be fed by your partner if you feel really tired.

If your baby drinks formulas, you need prepare 1-2 ready-to-feed bottles, milk power, and hot & cold water. Don’t put these supplies too far away from you. After feeding the baby, give them some warm water to drink to keep their mouth clean.

2, Diapers and bedding: Changing diapers during the night will keep baby dry and comfortable. Make sure your baby don’t sleep on the damp bedding, if bedding gets wet, you must change it. So always keep some clean diapers and bedding set aside.

3, Clothes: Vomiting milk will make baby clothes dirty and wet, so always prepare two sets of clean baby clothes ready for current season. You may buy from baby depot.

4, Comfort supplies: Soft toys, rattles, latex nipples, or music can calm down the baby, and provide comfort for the baby. You may prepare some comfort supplies for the night. If baby’s crying, these comfort supplies can be very useful.

5, Paper towel: You will need paper towels during the night before and after feeding or changing, so be prepared.

6, Common drugs and thermometer: You need prepare drugs for insect bitten. If you baby keep crying all the time, and have red flash on the cheek, take the temperature. Sometimes you need rash to the hospital, so always prepare some hospital necessary supplies in advance for both the baby and yourself. Put them aside.

Stop the Diaper Changing Battles

By Elizabeth Pantley, Author of Gentle Baby Care

Babies are little bundles of energy! They don’t want to lie still to have their diapers changed. They cry, fuss, or even crawl away. A simple issue can turn into a major tug-of-war between parent and baby.

Diaper changing as a ritual

The position of parent and baby during a diaper change is perfect for creating a bonding experience between you. You are leaning over your baby, and your face is at the perfect arms-length distance for engaging eye contact and communication. What’s more, this golden opportunity presents itself many times during each day; no matter how busy you both get, you have a few moments of quiet connection. It’s too valuable a ritual to treat it as simply maintenance.

Learning about your baby

Diapering offers a perfect opportunity for you to truly absorb your baby’s cues and signals. You’ll learn how his little body works, what tickles him, what causes those tiny goose bumps. As you lift, move, and touch your baby, your hands will learn the map of his body and what’s normal for him. This is important because it will enable you to easily decipher any physical changes that need attention.

Developing trust

Regular diaper changes create rhythm in your baby’s world and afford the sense that the world is safe and dependable. They are regular and consistent episodes in days that may not always be predictable. Your loving touches teach your baby that he is valued, and your gentle care teaches him that he is respected.

A learning experience for your baby

Your baby does a lot of learning during diaper changes. It’s one of the few times that she actually sees her own body without clothes, when she can feel her complete movements without a wad of diaper between her legs. Diaper-off time is a great chance for her to stretch her limbs and learn how they move.

During changing time, your baby is also a captive audience to your voice, so she can focus on what you are saying and how you are saying it — an important component of her language learning process. Likewise, for a precious few minutes, you are her captive audience, so you can focus on what she’s saying and how she is saying it — crucial to the growth of your relationship.

What your baby thinks and feels

Many active babies could not care less if their diapers are clean. They’re too busy to concern themselves with such trivial issues. It may be important to you, but it’s not a priority for your child.

Diaper rash or uncomfortable diapers (wrong size or bad fit) can make him dread diaper changes, so check these first. Once you’re sure all the practical issues are covered, make a few adjustments in this unavoidable process to make it more enjoyable.

Take a deep breath

Given the number of diapers you have to change, it’s possible that what used to be a pleasant experience for you has gotten to be routine, or even worse, a hassle. When parents approach diaper changing in a brisk, no-nonsense way, it isn’t any fun for Baby. Try to reconnect with the bonding experience that diaper changing can be — a moment of calm in a busy day when you share one-on-one time with your baby.

Have some fun

This is a great time to sing songs, blow tummy raspberries, or do some tickle and play. A little fun might take the dread out of diaper changes for both of you. A game that stays fresh for a long time is “hide the diaper.” Put a new diaper on your head, on your shoulder, or tucked in your shirt and ask, “Where’s the diaper? I can’t find it!” A fun twist is to give the diaper a name and a silly voice, and use it as a puppet. Let the diaper call your child to the changing station and have it talk to him as you change it. (If you get tired of making Mister Diaper talk, just remember what it was like before you tried the idea.)

Use distraction

Keep a flashlight with your changing supplies and let your baby play with it while you change him. Some kids’ flashlights have a button to change the color of the light, or shape of the ray. Call this his “diaper flashlight” and put it away when the change is complete. You may find a different type of special toy that appeals to your little one, or even a basket of small interesting toys. If you reserve these only for diaper time, they can retain their novelty for a long time.

Try a stand-up diaper

If your baby’s diaper is just wet (not messy), try letting her stand up while you do a quick change. If you’re using cloth diapers, have one leg pre-pinned so that you can slide it on like pants, or opt for pre-fitted diapers that don’t require pins.

Time to potty train?

If your child is old enough and seems ready for the next step, consider potty training.

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Breast Feeding Your Baby

One of the decisions you and your partner will have to make is whether to breast-feed to bottle-feed your baby.  Breast-feeding is recommended for all infants with very few exceptions because breast-fed babies are generally healthier with fewer ear, chest, gastrointestinal and urine infections. They also suffer fewer allergies, asthma, eczema and diabetes. Breast-fed babies are easier to settle and more convenient to travel with.

Brest-feeding also has health benefits for you. By nursing your baby as soon as you are able to after delivery, you will reduce the risk of excessive uterine bleeding. Continuing to breast-feed will help you return more quickly to your chances of breast, uterine and ovarian cancer and osteoporosis. If you have concerns about breast-feeding, talk to your doctor.

Essentials of Feeding your Baby

Feeding on demand manes giving your baby the breast or a bottle when he is hungry, not following timetables. Babies who are hungry will act a little anxious, will turn their heads toward any cheek stimulation and open their mouths like little birds. If they are not fed at that point, they will go on to cry. There is nothing to be gained by keeping your baby waiting once he has acted hungry. You are not spoiling your baby by meeting his needs; you are caring for him and showing you love him by feeding him when he days he is hungry.

During the first two days, your baby may tend to feed every two to four hours, 15 to 30 minutes on one or both sides. By the third day, he’ll be much more awake and his tummy will be ready for the extra milk you should be making. He’ll tend to nurse every 2 to3 hours, for 15 to 30 minutes on each side.

Babies will not act normally if they are not getting enough milk. They will be excessively sleepy at the breast and feeds will be very short and infrequent or excessively long. When awake, they will be very unhappy.

Your baby should lose no more than 7 percent of his birth weight, should be back at birth weight by day 10 to 14 and gain roughly 30g a day during the first months. As he gains, his cheeks, tummy and thighs fill in and he may get a double chin. Every baby is little different. If you are not sure yours is gaining well, see your health care provider.

Your baby will soon establish his own feeding pattern. Most babies’ take both breasts at each feed but if the mother has a very large supply, sometimes they only take one, some babies are snackers and some are 8 square meals a day babies. If your baby looks chubby, is gaining well and happy, relax and let him show you what he needs.

Babies take the amount of milk that they need. If they are full, they simply won’t latch on to the breast. Babies need a lot of time at the breast during the first months. The breast provides food, as well as warmth, security and an easy way to get to sleep when they are tired. If your baby is unhappy, always offer the breast. Most of the time that will be what he wants. If he does not settle, try other things like different holding positions such as laying your baby across your lap face down, rocking and gentle massage.

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Preterm babies are very varied in their ability to feed. The younger the baby, the more health and feeding problems he can have. Preterm babies tend to be very sleepy and may not wake and demand food even though they need it. So when applicable, wake your baby every three hours and offer a feeding.

If your baby is too sick to feed at the breast, start pumping as soon as you can with high-quality electric pump both breasts at the same time. You will need to pump regularly and often to maintain your milk supply until the baby can nurse. See your physician, nurse or lactation consultant for help with this.

It’s perfectly possible to breast-feed twins. Most mothers have more than enough milk. Feed them one at a time at first. Then when you are more confident, it will make your life easier to nurse them together.

By Canadian Medical Association

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Shifting Baby Sleep Schedules – When to Change from Two Naps to One Nap

By Elizabeth Pantley, Author of The No-Cry Nap Solution

During the early years of life, nap schedules are in a continuous state of change. After a newborn period of all-day napping, babies eventually settle into a regular two-nap-a-day routine. Most children switch from these two daily naps to one nap sometime between the ages of 12 and 24 months. However, that year of difference is a very long span of time. This shows that age alone is not the only factor to consider when changing your baby’s nap routine.

Changing your baby from two daily naps to one nap isn’t about what your child thinks he wants, nor is it about the schedule you’d like to have. It’s about the biological need for two naps versus one. Naps at different times of the day serve different purposes in mind and body development at different ages. For example, morning naps have more dreaming, or REM sleep, which makes them important for young babies who require it for early brain development. You don’t want to rush the process if your child is still benefiting from this important sleep time.

There is another consideration when deciding to make a schedule change: The length of time that your child is awake from one sleep period to the next has an effect on his mood and behavior. No matter how well your baby sleeps at night naps are still very important. The older your child is, the longer he can go between sleep breaks without getting cranky. The biology behind this reason dictates that young babies need to divide their day up with two naps, but older babies can handle a full day with only one nap.

Since there is a wide range of what’s normal it’s important to study each child’s behavior to see when he is ready to transition to one nap a day. Use the following lists as a guide.baby nap time gifts

Signs That your Child Needs TWO NAPS Daily.

•       Your child is under 12 months old

•         When you put your child down for a nap he plays, resists, or fusses for a while but always ends up sleeping for an hour or more

•        When you take your child for car rides during the day he usually falls asleep

•        If your child misses a nap he is fussy or acts tired until the next nap or bedtime

•        Your child is dealing with a change in his life (such as a new sibling, sickness, or starting daycare) that disrupts his nap schedule

•        Your child misses naps when you’re on the go, but when you are at home he takes two good naps

Signs That Your Child Is Ready to Change to ONE DAILY NAP.

•         When you put your child down for a nap he plays or fusses before falling asleep, and then takes only a short nap, or never falls asleep at all

•        Your child can go for car rides early in the day and not fall asleep in the car

•       When your child misses a nap he is cheerful and energetic until the next nap or bedtime

•        Your child naps well for one of his naps, but totally resists the other nap

How to Make the Transition When Signs Point to Change

Instead of thinking in terms of dropping a nap it’s better to think in terms of a schedule change. The change from two naps to one nap is rarely a one-day occurrence. Most often there will be a transition period of several months when your child clearly needs two naps on some days, but one nap on others. You have a number of options during this complicated transition time:

•       Watch for your child’s sleepy signs, and put your child down for a nap when indications first appear.

•       Keep two naps, but don’t require that your child sleep at both times, allow quiet resting instead.

•       Choose a single naptime that is later than the usual morning nap, but not as late as the afternoon nap. Keep your child active (and outside if possible) until about 30 minutes before the time you have chosen.

•        On days when a nap occurs early in the day, move bedtime earlier by 30 minutes to an hour to minimize the length of time between nap and bedtime.

The Danger of Dropping a Nap Too Soon

It’s my belief that the reputation that toddlers have which is known as the “Terrible Twos,” is very likely caused by inappropriate napping schedules. There are a great number of toddlers who switch from two naps a day to one nap, or – heaven forbid! – drop naps altogether, many months before they are biologically ready. This can result in a devastating effect on their mood and behavior: the dreaded and horrible “Terrible Twos.”

For those parents whose children suffer the “Trying Threes” or the “Fearsome Fours,” it’s likely your child is misbehaving for the same reason: an inappropriate nap schedule may be the culprit. The good news is that a modification of your child’s napping routine can make a wonderful and dramatic difference in his day – and yours.

From The No-Cry Nap Solution: Guaranteed Gentle Ways to Solve All Your Naptime Problems by Elizabeth Pantley (McGraw-Hill, January 2009). Here is the link for information and more excerpts: http://www.pantley.com/elizabeth/

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