Having a baby for the first time is a magical and exciting time, but as well as bringing joy and sleep deprivation, it brings one job that stinks (pun intended). Did you know that you need to change a newborn baby’s nappy around 10-12 times a day? That is a lot of poop! Here are five top tips for getting through unscathed:

Set Up Your Area

There is nothing worse than being in the middle of changing an explosive dirty nappy and discovering that you left the wipes in the living room or that you don’t have any nappies on hand. I recommend a nappy change station somewhere in your house with the essentials – nappies, wipes, nappy bags, and cream. In my experience, Sudocrem is hands down the best nappy rash cream in Australia, and a tube or tub goes a long way. If you are using cloth nappies, you will need a nappy pail instead of nappy bags.

Gather Your Tools

Before you take off your baby’s nappy, grab out everything you need. Your supplies should include a fresh nappy, a clean suit if required, a nappy bag and your wipes. I have heard one horror story about a Mumma who bent down to get a nappy from the shelf below her change table and got poop squirted in her ear. You do not want to be that person!

Another hot tip (although optional) is to use an old hand towel or washer underneath your baby’s bottom as it is quicker and easier to remove and wash than the nappy change cover itself. Plus, you most likely have more washers and hand towels than you do nappy change covers.

Speed is your Friend

There is something about taking a nappy off a baby’s bottom that makes them want to wee on you. It is one of life’s great mysteries. The trick here is to whip the old nappy off and replace it with the new one at the speed of light. If there is some clean-up to be done, then consider holding up a nappy or washer as a shield, so you don’t get an unexpected shower. Parents of girls, don’t think that you are immune because it can still happen to you! If your baby has done a poo, use the front section of the nappy to wipe most of it away before cleaning the rest up with wipes or a damp cloth.

Know the Rules for Boys and Girls

There is one important golden rule of nappy changing for each sex. For girls, it is that you wipe from front to back. This technique keeps bacteria away from their vagina. For boys, it is to always package with their penis pointing down to avoid a fountain out the top. With both sexes, make sure you clean them gently and carefully to prevent infections.

If Leaks Occur, Size Up

The best way to tell that it is time to go up to the next size nappy is when the precious size becomes as leaky as an old wooden pirate ship. If your cherub needs more outfit changes than a model on a catwalk, try a bigger nappy. If you are still having trouble, you may need to experiment with different brands or do more regular nappy changes.

Babies generally give you lots of practice changing nappies so that you will be a pro in no time!