The truth about… nappy changes with a mobile baby

I thought those first few nappy changes with a newborn were a bit challenging – those curled up little legs and all those creases and trying to get that sticky meconium off without getting it absolutely everywhere. Once those little ones start becoming mobile though, those nappy changes take on a whole new level of challenging:

The truth about... nappy changes with a mobile baby - Little Hearts, Big Love

  • The first hurdle is having to actually catch them in the first place as they suddenly develop superhuman speed and start crawling away from you.
  • Once caught, the next challenge is getting them to lie down on the changing mat, holding them down with one hand whilst you remove clothing and undo the dirty nappy with the other, whilst they struggle to free themselves throughout this process.
  • Often they sense your distraction as you grab the clean nappy and a wipe and suddenly they’re off and there’s a bare bottom disappearing into the distance.
  • Toys can provide a good distraction to try and help keep them still (ish!) whilst you change their nappy as quickly as possible (and stop them trying to use the toy to help you wipe!)
  • Then comes the fun part of trying to put the clean nappy on and whilst simultaneously stopping the baby from grabbing the dirty nappy/wipes/dunking toy in dirty nappy/crawling away/all of these at once.
  • Those little poppers are great but trying to do them up with a little one trying to kick your hand away is a challenge.
  • Trousers or tights – just as you get one leg in and start on the other, the baby manages to wriggle their leg out of the first one leaving you back to square one.
  • Finally! The nappy is changed, baby is dressed and off again meanwhile you feel like you’ve been through a wrestling match which you only just managed to win because despite your opponent being considerably smaller and lighter, their wrestling skill is infinitely superior to yours.
  • If you have another child, it becomes even more fun as inevitably they come over to inspect the procedure (especially with toddlers) and ‘help’. The more pooey the nappy, the more they will want to help so you also find yourself trying to stop your other child putting their hands in it too.

The truth about... nappy changes with a mobile baby - Little Hearts, Big Love I’m sure nappy changes with an older baby require mums to have as many arms as an octopus. At the last nappy change, I decided I needed a hand for each of the following:

  • Stopping Sophie from escaping
  • Holding her legs in the air
  • Wiping
  • Distracting her with a toy
  • Stopping her ‘helping’ with said toy
  • Stopping Jessica from ‘helping’

No wonder it’s such a challenge! I quite like the public changing stations where you can strap the baby to the table – makes it a little easier!

Any other mums have any magic tips for making nappy changes with older babies a little more smooth sailing?

And then the fun began...

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34 thoughts on “The truth about… nappy changes with a mobile baby

  1. So true! My youngest is 19 months, and is freakishly strong & determined. Tights. Tights are my nemesis. x

  2. Oh hon I’m sat here nodding along to absolutely everything you’ve said! My 9mo is a fiend for escaping whilst having his bottom changed, it’s becoming really tricky… #thetruth

    1. It’s such hard work when they are constantly trying to escape – Sophie usually complains about having her nappy changed and I think, well if you would just lie still for a moment it would all be over so much more quickly…!

  3. Love this post… most of these points can also be applied to lots of mummy duties… putting on the childs coat or generally just dressing them. Brushing their teeth. Brushing their hair. Trying toget whatever foreigh object is in their mouth off them before they swallow it!

    1. Oh yes, that is very true. Trying to get my youngest to do most things without her running away can be quite a challenge!

  4. Oh this is so true Louise 🙂 In fact I never did manage to get either of mine to lie down and I have perfected the art of stand-up nappy changes! Other mums sometimes look quite impressed.. The only problem with this is that, ideally they should be standing holding on to a chair etc. but if they suddenly want to turn around beware the poor furniture! This whole phenomenon did come as a bit of a shock the first time round when you’re used to a compliant little new born! Thanks again for linking up to The Truth about… X #thetruthabout

    1. I’m impressed by the stand-up nappy changes – I’m not so great at managing that one but sometimes it’s forced upon me! Lovely to link up with #thetruthabout again 🙂

  5. Louise this is brilliant. I love it and can relate to it as been there twice and still at the end of it with one toddler. They move and wiggle so much don’t they. Bless. So funny too though when we thought it was hard at first and it just gets more challenging. Thanks for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

    1. Thank you Jenny – it certainly is a challenge with a wriggly little one! The parenting challenges just change as they get older, don’t they? Lovely to link up again to #sharewithme 🙂

  6. Great post Louise, you have summed up those tricky nappy challenges perfectly. Made me smile today #sharewithme

  7. My oldest is obsessed with knowing what baby has done in her nappy! Haha! I never knew what a struggle it was as my oldest was good as gold at nappy changes- youngest, totally different kettle of fish! Turn your back for a millisecond and she is off! Lol

    1. I think my youngest is more challenging than my older one too – although it might just be that I’ve forgotten some of it! 🙂

    1. Me too – whilst the nappy changes can be incredibly frustrating, that little naked bottom disappearing into the distance makes me chuckle too! 🙂

  8. Grace & Lucas say – See? Us challenging you started from Day 1. The Mothers really enjoyed reading this post as they said it brought back many memories…………… but they wouldn’t say if all of them were good though……… #sharewithme

    1. Lol, glad the Mothers enjoyed the post – I am sure you were both angelic babies Grace and Lucas and would never have dreamed of making nappy changes challenging 😉

  9. Oh the memories have just come screaming back at me!!!! I always remember tryingto catch Lucas’s ‘fountain with cupped hands!!! Fab post 🙂 #sharewithme

    1. Lol, that really made me chuckle! I hadn’t thought about the added complication of little boys and their ability to aim! Glad you liked my post – thank you! 🙂

  10. Haha I know this only too well! All of mine have been very mobile, walking from 10 months so as soon as they decided they didn’t want to lie down I had them in pull ups and all nappy changes were done stood up. So much easier! Less so when I used cloth with my youngest but still doable! x x x

    1. Ah pull ups and standing up sounds very tempting! We’re using cloth nappies at the moment but have been looking into options ready for potty training my eldest x

  11. Although newborn nappy changing days are a thing of the past, having as many arms as an octopus would have helped (*coughs* dads change nappies too). I must say, I don’t miss those infernal poppers. Such a pain! #TheList

    1. Apologies – you’re quite right that dads also change nappies and that having arms like an octopus would be very helpful for both parents and not just mums! And yes I agree with you about the poppers.

  12. Oh I feel your pain, Baby is like a ninja. Unless I am holding her down she will flip onto her feet. Given up and now do them standing. Might even get pull ups. Thanks for linking up to #TheList x

    1. I’m getting there with doing them standing although still prefer to have the fight and lie them down as find that so much easier. Pull ups are very tempting though! Lovely to link up to #thelist again 🙂

    1. Yes, toy distraction definitely helps as long as it’s not used like a wipe! More arms would definitely be helpful! 🙂

  13. Toddler still in nappies and this post has made me realise it’s really time to potty train! Fab post! Thanks for linking up to #brilliantblogposts

    1. Thank you – my eldest is still in nappies too, we will be starting potty training very soon! Lovely to link up to #brilliantblogposts again 🙂

    1. Thank you – yes it’s a fun time and I think your caption for the photo sums it up quite beautifully 🙂

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