How To Use Baby Wipes For Newborns

How To Use Baby Wipes For Newborns

As a new parent, you want to provide the very best care for your precious little one. An important part of that care is keeping your baby clean, dry, and comfortable through frequent diaper changes. Baby wipes are an essential tool to help you gently clean your baby's delicate skin during each diaper change.

In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about using baby wipes, including:

  • What baby wipes are used for
  • Why you should use baby wipes
  • A step-by-step guide on how to use baby wipes
  • How many wipes you’ll need for each diaper change
  • Important do’s and don'ts when using wipes
  • Tips on choosing the best baby wipes
  • How to use wipes safely
  • The difference between wet wipes and dry wipes

Arm yourself with this knowledge, and you’ll be able to confidently use baby wipes to keep your little bundle of joy clean, healthy, and happy.

What Baby Wipes Are Used For?

Baby wipes are soft, disposable cloths that are moistened with a gentle cleansing formula. They are designed specifically for use on a baby’s delicate skin. The main uses of baby wipes are:

  • Cleaning the diaper area: Wipes gently remove urine, stool, and any resulting irritation from your baby’s genital area and bottom. The moisturising formula soothes skin and prevents diaper rash.
  • Quick clean-ups: Wipes come in handy for spit-ups, mealtime messes, sticky fingers and faces, and any other light mess that occurs. They can clean where needed without harsh scrubbing.
  • Freshening up: Keep a pack of wipes handy to freshen up your baby’s face, hands, and body for a quick refresh without needing a full bath. It’s great for when you’re out and about.
  • Soothing skin: In addition to cleaning, many baby wipes contain soothing aloe vera, vitamin E, and other ingredients to calm and comfort sensitive skin. The light scent also leaves the baby smelling fresh.

Why Should You Use Baby Wipes?

Here are the top reasons to stock up on baby wipes:

  • Gentleness: Baby wipes are specially formulated to be extra soft and gentle for a newborn’s delicate body. They cleanse lightly without irritating.
  • Convenience: Wipes make diaper changing and quick cleanups much faster and easier, which is very helpful for busy parents on the go.
  • Hygiene: Wipes guarantee the baby’s skin is thoroughly clean, reducing the spread of bacteria that could cause infections or illness.
  • Skin protection: The moisturising formula helps hydrate skin to prevent dryness and irritation from frequent diaper changes. Key ingredients soothe and protect.
  • Comfort: Warm wipes can provide a calming comfort for the baby, much like a warm washcloth. The fresh scent also helps the baby feel clean and content.

For these reasons, paediatricians actually recommend using baby wipes for diapering over washcloths or paper towels, which can irritate a newborn’s behind.

Step-By-Step Guide on How To Use Baby Wipes

When it comes time for a diaper change, follow these key steps for smoothly and safely cleaning up your little one using baby wipes:

  1. Gather supplies: Have fresh diapers, wipes, clean clothing/blanket, and a designated changing area ready before bringing the baby over.
  2. Position baby securely: Place baby on their back and put one hand gently but firmly on their torso to keep them from rolling.
  3. Unfasten dirty diaper: Undo tabs and fold down the front half of the soiled diaper, away from the baby’s skin.
  4. Clean genital area: Use 1-2 fresh wipes to gently wipe down the entire genital area, front to back. Use a clean part of the wipe for any second swipes needed.
  5. Lift baby’s legs: Gently lift both legs up to the bottom with one hand. Slide dirty diaper out and position fresh wipes.
  6. Wipe bottom well: Use 2-3 wipes to thoroughly yet gently clean all creases, folds, and surfaces of baby’s bottom.
  7. Pat completely dry: Gently pat the skin dry before putting on any creams or new diapers. Small wet spots can chafe the skin.
  8. Apply barrier cream if needed: If the skin looks red or irritated, gently smooth on a layer of barrier cream over irritated areas to prevent moisture, urine, or stool from directly contacting the skin. 

How Many Wipes Are You Required to Change a Nappy on Average?

A newborn will go through 6-10 diapers per day on average. For each of those changes, you’ll need about 3-6 wipes to clean the genital area, bottom, and any surrounding skin fully. So, plan on using around 25 baby wipes per day.

To make sure one package lasts a while, stock up on a case of 5-6 packs of wipes at a time. Most wipe packages contain 60-72 wipes. Buying in bulk is cheaper in the long run

Pro Tip: Keep spare packs in places around the house and in diaper bags so you never get caught without wipes close by when nature calls!

Do’s and Don’ts for Proper Use of Wipes

When using baby wipes, follow these helpful dos and don'ts when wiping down your little bundle during diaper duty:

Do:

  • Use fresh wipes each time: Don't reuse wipes since they pick up bacteria.
  • Wipe front to back: This avoids spreading messes into genital areas.
  • Let wipes warm-up: Cool wipes can startle babies, so let the pack sit out for a bit before using.
  • Gently pat area dry: Wetness can allow rashes; gently blot with a dry wipe before adding cream.
  • Keep extras handy: Have wipes readily available wherever diaper changes happen.

Don’t: 

  • Use harsh back-and-forth rubbing: Lightly wipe and pat instead.
  • Flush wipes down the toilet: They don’t break down and can clog pipes.
  • Leave baby unattended: Always keep one hand securely on the baby during changes.
  • Use wipes as all-purpose cleaners: They’re specially formulated for baby skin.
  • Let the package run out: Always refill the stash before you totally run out.

How To Choose The Best Baby Wipes?

With so many wipe varieties on the market, here are tips for choosing the suitable wipes for your baby:

  1. Pick sensitive skin formulas: Look for "gentle," "sensitive," or "pure" on the label. These avoid irritants.
  2. Seek natural ingredients: Plant-based, chemical-free options are less likely to inflame skin.
  3. Consider added ingredients: Options include soothing aloe vera, vitamin E, or oils that hydrate the skin.
  4. Scent lightly: Light, fresh scents are fine, but avoid heavy perfumes.
  5. Choose soft and strong: Plush wipes clean better and won't fall apart when wet.
  6. Test a few brands: See which wipes keep your baby happiest and their skin healthiest.

Start with fragrance-free newborn wipes until you observe how your baby's skin reacts, then explore other specially formulated wipes for sensitive skin if needed.

How To Use Baby Wipes Safely?

While baby wipes are very convenient cleaning tools, take a few precautions to ensure safe use:

  • Supervise Baby: Never leave a baby unattended, elevated, or on a changing table, even briefly. Maintain contact the entire time.
  • Mind Fall Risks: Choose low, stable surfaces and always secure the baby with one hand. Falls are the most common accident during diaper changes.
  • Keep Wipes Handy: Having wipes ready nearby prior to placing the baby on the changing surface prevents having to step away to grab them briefly.
  • Watch Baby's Hands: Newborns' first instinct may be to reach for a used, dirty wipe. Gently secure their hands out of the way when wiping.
  • Use Proper Disposal: Dirty wipes contain bodily waste and fluids. Seal them in a diaper disposal bag before throwing them away to avoid germ spread or odours.
  • Change Frequently: Leaving a baby in a soiled diaper for too long raises infection risks. Stick to changing every 2-3 hours or immediately if a mess occurs.

Wet Wipes and Dry Wipes: All You Need To Know

Wet Wipes:

  • Come pre-moistened with cleaning formula
  • Offer an easy, convenient cleaning method
  • Provide immediate soothing relief
  • Can dry out if packaging isn’t well-sealed

Dry Wipes:

  • Stored compressed and dry; require water activation
  • Are more eco-friendly with less packaging waste
  • Stay fresher for longer since no pre-added wetness
  • Need the extra step of wetting with water before use

Conclusion

Baby wipes are an essential diapering tool that helps make this everyday parenting task more manageable. For your query, ‘How to use baby wipes’, when used correctly and stored properly, they can safely and gently clean a baby's bottom multiple times daily. Be sure to select wipes made with simple, natural ingredients suitable for your baby's skin type.

Also, follow proper usage guidelines to avoid any risks. With the right wipe in hand and some tips and tricks, you'll change diapers like a pro in no time. Always remember that this routine bonding time with your little one is a special opportunity to show them your love and care. 

Soon, they will be growing up right before your eyes. So enjoy every cuddle, coo, and diaper change- the early days pass by too quickly!

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1) When should I use baby wipes?

Baby wipes are commonly used for diaper changes, cleaning the baby's hands and face, and wiping up small messes. They are also handy for cleaning surfaces and even for personal hygiene for adults.

2) Are baby wipes OK to use on newborns?

Yes, baby wipes are generally safe for newborns, but choosing wipes specifically designed for sensitive skin and free from harsh chemicals or fragrances is important.

3) What is the proper way to wipe a baby?

When wiping a baby, it's important to use gentle patting motions to avoid irritation. Always wipe from front to back for girls to prevent the spread of bacteria. For boys, be sure to clean around the genitals and in the folds of the skin.

4) How many baby wipes can be used per day?

The number of baby wipes used per day can vary depending on the baby's needs, but on average, you might use around 6 to 10 wipes for diaper changes and additional wipes for cleaning the baby's hands and face.

5) Can I use baby wipes on my face?

Yes, baby wipes can be used on the face for quick clean-ups, but it's best to choose wipes that are free from alcohol and harsh chemicals to avoid drying out the skin. If you have sensitive skin, consider using wipes specifically designed for facial use.

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