In this article we will be discussing the use of a diaper changing chart. We will be talking about what this is, why it is important, what is recorded on it, and some misc. tips.
Many pediatricians want a new parent to track a newborns diaper output for about 6 weeks. A parent will go to see the doctor a few days after being released from the hospital and then again 6 weeks after the baby is born. You can expect them to ask about peeing, pooping, and feeding of their child. The newborn should be having about 6 wet diapers a day and 1-3 poop diapers per day. This will all depend on whether they are bottle fed or breast fed. They also should be eating 24 oz of formula or 8-10 times per day for breast fed newborns.
Now let’s get into the first category of What is it.
What Is It
First thing we need to do is define what a diaper changing chart is? A diaper changing chart is a chart where you keep track of the diaper changes, and what is in the diaper. In other word, whether the diaper is just wet, filled with poop, or has diarrhea.
But Elaine, why would you need to know this? This is important for many reasons that I will go into in further detail in the next category but this information is needed mainly for health reasons. Parents need to be keeping track of this information for their pediatrician.
There are also charts that will keep track of both feeding and diaper changes. They will be discussed in detailed later in this article. But for now I will give you a brief overview. For instance, how much formula or breast milk they had, whether the baby ate solid food or not. These will or can affect the diaper output.
Now we will discuss why this is important.
Why Use It
It is important to change your baby often to prevent health problems. You need to monitor your baby’s output because these help to indicate this. The pediatrician may ask you these questions at your appointment so this way you will be ready.
One of the changes worth noting is that if your baby is peeing less than usual or their having hard poops then this could be a sign of dehydration.
You should change your child regularly because the ammonia from the urine will mix with the bacteria from the poop and cause a rash. Therefore, you will need to change the baby before or after each feeding.
Also since most babies do not show discomfort when they are wet, this is why a diaper changing chart comes in so handy. This is a schedule to help you to get into the habit of changing your baby every few hours.
Now we will talk about what will be recorded on the chart.
What Do You Record
On these charts are listed whether the child is dry, wet, pooped, diarrhea as stated previously. This information is useful to the parents for the reasons I have previously stated, mostly health issues. Also, on the charts are listed the times and then room for the caregiver to write comments.
Some charts list diaper changing and feeding while some only track the diaper changes. The feedings would be helpful because there are times when that will affect the diaper output.
When you introduce a new food to your child this can sometimes affect their output. To check for any allergic reaction or any changes for that matter, you simply follow the unspoken rule of waiting 4 days before introducing a new food. For example, if you introduced carrots on Monday you would wait until Friday to introduce another food. This way you could see if the carrots cause any changes in poop habits, gas pains, or any allergic reactions.
Babies will pee about every 1-3 hrs. and will poop at least 3 times per day. I wish I was still this regular!
What or how do I know if my baby is constipated?
That is a very good question!
Now we will discuss some helpful tip that are listed below.
Constipation– this happens more with formula fed babies than breast fed. Why? The consistency of the milk, breast milk is easier to digest. But back to your question, their poops are firm and hard to pass. The solution- give them plenty of water, high-fiber cereal to their regular food, or pureed veggie or fruit.
Diarrhea– very watery stools which can occur from milk allergies, parasites, viral infections, and reaction to antibiotics. We have dealt with the milk allergy issue ourselves, the parasites is from the child in day-care centers who are exposed to “giardia” which is fecal contaminated objects that a child will put in their mouths’. Rotavirus was common until 2006 when a vaccine came out to greatly reduce the symptoms. And last we have the reaction to antibiotics. Some children who take antibiotics also develop diarrhea as a side effect. But, if the antibiotic is stopped early then the bacterial infection that it was given for will return. The solution for diarrhea- to drink lots of water to prevent dehydration. Don’t give juice because that can just cause the symptoms to get worse. You will also need more frequent diaper changes because the acid from the poops can really irritate the sensitive skin. Also, needed, are air drying or soft warm water washing but NOT using wipes. The wipes can be irritating to the baby’s sensitive as well.
Now we will sum up what we talked about in this article.
Here is what we talked about in this article
What Is It
- Information needed for pediatricians
Why Use It
- Prevents health problems
- Help create new habit
What Do You Record
- Wet, dry, poop, diarrhea
- Diaper change and feeding
If you have any questions or need a hand, feel free to leave a comment below and I will be more than happy to help you out.
All the Best,