Posts Tagged ‘changing baby’

25 Tips for soothing a fussy baby

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

Most of the time breastfeeding and/or babywearing are powerfully effective tools to comfort a fussy baby.  As a nursing mom, I rely pretty heavily on the magical power of milk to soothe my baby. Although there are times when baby is fussy and for whatever reason nursing doesn’t provide adequate comfort. On that rare occasion, I might feel at a loss of what to do to help soothe my baby. In the moment, while baby is crying/fussing it is often hard to think clearly and react efficiently. That’s when a little cheat sheet of tips, such as the one below, comes in handy; a list of tried and true ideas that are typically effective for soothing a fussy baby.

Photo courtesy of Jazmin.V Photography

1. Go for a car ride

2. Take a walk (in stroller or baby carrier)

3. Bounce on an exercise ball with baby in wrap or in your lap

4. Babywear while vacuuming (my floors were super clean when my second was a newborn because this was his favorite activity)

5. Swaddle baby

6. Give baby Rescue Remedy

7. Give baby a massage

8. Give baby a bath

9. Change baby’s diaper and/or clothing (something may be causing discomfort)

10. Sing to baby

11. Put on loud music

12. Rock baby in a rocking chair

13. Call in reinforcements. Sometimes having someone else hold baby is helpful in changing baby’s mood

14. Change of scenery. Go somewhere…anywhere. Give baby new surroundings/stimulation to attend to.

15. Use aromatherapy such as a few spritz of lavender in the air or drops of lavender in a bath

16. Provide baby with skin to skin

17. Go into a dark room with white noise (we have a noisy bathroom fan that my middle son liked as a little baby. Sometimes I would sit in the dark bathroom with the fan running while holding him)

18. Tell a story. Sometimes just the gentle sound of your voice can be calming

19. Do leg exercises to release baby’s gas

20. Burp baby. (I remember one time my first son was extremely fussy for about 20 minutes and suddenly he let out a huge burp and then he was fine)

21. Change baby’s position. If they have been upright in your arms for a while, try laying them down on their back or tummy.

22. Provide visual stimulation in high contrast colors such as a blanket or toy to look at.

23. Change temperature of the room or add/remove layers of clothing

24. Go outside. A breathe of fresh air can be very healing

25. Take a few deep breathes and as much as possible keep yourself calm. Baby will react to your energy. If you are feeling anxious, baby will too. If you remain peaceful, that message will be sent to baby and can have a calming effect.

What tip(s) do you have to add to the list? Would love to hear your tried and true baby calming techniques!

-Sarah

 

Do Your Cloth Diapers Leak? 5 Solutions for Leaky Diapers

Wednesday, March 7th, 2012

Leaky cloth diapers are kind of frustrating. Actually they are more than “kind of” frustrating…they are super annoying! You end up changing baby’s clothes each diaper change, adding to the never-ending mountain of laundry. If they leak while baby is sleeping this often entails washing bedding as well. This can make even the most devoted cloth diapering mama consider using disposables. But, wait! Don’t give up on cloth diapering just yet. Here are five simple solutions for leaky cloth diapers:

1. Double check the fit – The most important protection you have against leaky diapers is a proper fitting diaper. If you have an adjustable size diaper (ie- a one size diaper), perhaps experiment with the settings a bit. Sometimes parents keep baby on the middle setting for too long because they are worried about their nine month old fitting into the largest setting on a diaper that is supposed to last until the baby is two years old. I get it! I am even guilty of that myself! But delaying moving up a size doesn’t ensure the diapers will fit as long as you want them to…it may just be preventing them from fitting properly and therefore working effectively in the meantime. Also be assured that it is very possible (and likely) that the setting that fits your 9 month old, will also fit when he/she is older. Babies’ bodies change a great deal during the first two years of life. There is usually a “chubby” phase that occurs as they are on the brink of greater mobility.

2. Add extra protection – There are many awesome options for increasing the absorbency of your cloth diapers. Soakers, doublers or an extra insert might be just the thing for you to help keep baby’s bum (and clothes and bedding) extra dry!

3. Strip your diapers – If it’s been a while since you last stripped your diapers, perhaps they are in need of a good stripping! Stripping cloth diapers is when you remove the laundry soap residue build-up that interfere with the absorbency of your diapers. Not sure how to strip your diapers? Check out this blog post for more information.

4. Consider re-vamping your stash – Truth is certain diapers fit certain babies better. Just as two women can both weigh 140 lbs but that doesn’t mean they will fit into the same pair of jeans. If you have a variety of diapers in your stash, you probably know which one is your favorite…the one that’s always dirty! The least favorites are the ones that are always there, perfectly clean, just staring you in the face each time you change your baby’s diaper. Keep in mind that what is your least favorite, might be somebody else’s top favorite! Since there is a market for buying used diapers, consider selling the diapers that don’t work well for you. Then you can turn around and re-invest that money into buying more of your favorites! If you are unsure what your favorite diaper is, consider doing the 30 Day Fling with Fluff package through Mom’s Milk Boutique. It’s a great way, low-cost way to sample a variety of cloth diapers to determine what works best for your baby. Each brand of cloth diaper has it’s own unique design and combination of fibers that may or may not be a good fit for your little one. As with most things in parenting, the only way to really know what works is through experimentation.

5. Change baby more frequently – Some babies are what we affectionately refer to as ‘heavy wetters’. If you have a heavy wetter changing baby more frequently might be your best protection against leaky diapers. It seems that on average most cloth diaper mamas change (or at least check) their baby every two hours during the day. Some mamas can go as long as four or more hours. However if you have a heavy wetter you will likely need to change baby at a higher frequency than average. How do you know if you have a heavy wetter? If you are questioning it, you probably don’t…because you would know if you do! :)

Have you dealt with leaky cloth diapers? Any tips or suggestions to share with your fellow cloth diapering mamas?

-Sarah

Cloth Diapering: Where to Begin

Thursday, October 13th, 2011

Interested in cloth diapering but not sure how to get started? I can totally relate! When I first examined the option of cloth diapering, I was completely overwhelmed with all the information. Words such as all-in-ones, prefolds, or wetbags were not in my vocabulary. I actually had never seen a cloth diaper in real life before making the commitment to cloth. Needless to say diving into cloth diapering was navigating a whole new world of parenting products and choices.

Selecting a cloth diaper
This is actually probably one of the hardest parts of cloth diapering; selecting a style diaper for your initial investment in cloth. There are pros and cons to all the available options so individual factors such as budget, baby’s body size/proportions, who will be changing baby on a regular basis, how many subsequent babies you plan to have, etc will influence your decision. It helped me to organize the options into two basic categories: one-step diapering systems and two-step diapering systems. A one-step diapering system would include all-in-ones or pocket diapers (assuming you pre-stuff them) and a two-step diapering system would include pre-folds /flats or fitted diapers with a cover. Some factors to consider when deciding between a one-step or two step diapering system is primarily budget, however some additional considerations include fabric type, ease of diapering, age of baby, and amount of laundry. Some people prefer to stick to natural fibers such as hemp or wool in which case you would select from available two step diapering systems. As for ease of diapering, there is a big difference in changes a newborn’s diaper as opposed to an older toddler’s diaper. Differences include how cooperative (or rather uncooperative) the child is during diapering, frequency of diaper changes, and the consistency of the poop. Yep, can’t talk about cloth diapers without mentioning poop! Something to keep in mind is that infant breastmilk poop is quite different than a toddler who eats a variety of foods which may impact diaper choice. Additionally when a toddler is starting to explore potty training, a two-step diapering system might be less desirable.

For me initially deciding between a one-step diapering system or a two-step diapering system helped narrow down my choices into a more manageable selection. Once you have decided what type of diaper you want, you will then need to determine what size to purchase. The available sizes range per brand of diaper, but typically you would need to invest in two sizes; one stash for newborn/early infancy and then another stash for later infancy/toddlerhood. There is also the option of one-size diapers that grow with baby which is a concept that appeals to many parents.

The next big decision is how many diapers to purchase. If you plan to cloth diaper full-time my recommendation is to have around 25 diapers in your rotation. That is a generous estimate as you could get by with less, however 25 diapers would allow you to comfortably get through three days of diapering. You are likely going to wash diapers every 3rd day and this will ensure you have clean diapers available while you are washing the dirty diapers. It’s not fun to run out of clean cloth diapers!

What style cloth diaper do you use on a regular basis? What do you like about that style? Sharing your experiences may help mamas decide what fluff to put on their baby’s bottom!

Stay tuned for more cloth diapering information throughout the week! Tomorrow’s topic is cloth diapering accessories!

-Sarah