Today's guest post is from Dingle Dangle, the makers of an ingenious sensory toy designed to entertain your baby while you change their nappy. Here, they tell us their best hacks for dads when it comes to changing nappies
There is a certain parenting chore that strikes fear in the heart of all new dads:
It’s the squirming. The squealing. The wriggling. Changing your baby’s nappy can feel like wrestling a baby alligator!
The NHS estimates that new parents change on average 10-12 nappies a day, which means that parents will change close to 4,000 nappies during their baby’s first year!
We’re sorry dads, but there is no way out of nappy changing, so today we want to give you five parenting hacks that will make nappy changing time just a wee bit easier.
Daddy Nappy Changing Hack #1: The Art of Diversion
As your baby grows to 3 and 4 months, your calm little angel may start to wriggle and jiggle during nappy changing time. Rather than being passive observers of their own lives, they are starting to recognize movement, shapes and colours that trigger movement in their little bodies.
One of the best things you can do to help calm your baby during nappy changing time is to distract them with a toy that is sensory for both their vision and cognitive development.
A toy like the Dingle Dangle - a game-changing, hands-free baby distractor created by two experienced fathers - is the perfect solution to help change your baby’s nappy.
The Dingle Dangle straps to your head and has a dangling octopus mobile with black and white sensory patterns, colourful dangling legs, and a gentle chime. This combination of sensory elements will distract and engage your baby for a good 60-seconds while you do your nappy change.
It’s a great toy for vision and cognitive development as the combination of colours, textures and sound engages your baby to follow along with the movement. This is great for your baby’s concentration, focus and developing neck muscles.
The best part? It’s a fun (and funny) way for new dads to bond with their little angels during nappy changing time.
Daddy Nappy Changing Hack #2: Sing to Your Baby
Ready to warm up those vocal chords Harry Styles?
Singing to your baby is a great hack to distract them during nappy changing time. Sometimes a simple song like “Wheels on the Bus” will work, and other times you will have to get creative (maybe a rousing rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody”).
The more natural that you get at nappy changing, the more you will be able to come up with fun and silly songs that your baby will absolutely love. For many dads, this is their favourite way to distract their baby.
Daddy Nappy Changing Hack #3: Stick to a Routine
Before you had your baby you were that fun, freewheelin’ guy who did whatever he wanted whenever he wanted.
Sorry pal, but things have changed…
Babies thrive on predictability and structure. Since you may need to change a nappy up to 12 times a day, try creating a routine that works for both you and your baby.
It’s important for new dads to develop a routine that you can repeat each and every time you change your baby’s nappy. Fear of the unknown, even for babies, can be stressful.
Creating familiarity in your routine will help instil a sense of calm and control over the situation - but don’t stress, change doesn’t happen overnight. Try your best to be patient, persistent and forgiving of mishaps - you are doing your best for both you and your baby!
Daddy Nappy Changing Hack #4: Keep Calm (and Change On)
There is one important question you can ask during the nappy changing routine: "How do I make my baby feel most comfortable?"
One way that most experienced daddies find helps the nappy changing routine: calmness.
If you are frantically rushing to get your baby’s nappy changed, your little one may pick up on your energy and fight their nappy change. Nobody likes to feel hurried or rushed - and this includes your baby.
Instead, try to slow down and connect with your child. Nappy changing time can be a beautiful time for daddies to connect with their babies - don’t rush through it and make it a stressful chore that neither of you will look forward to.
Daddy Nappy Changing Hack #5: Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
A wriggly baby who fights nappy changing can leave a new dad feeling defeated or frustrated. If it happens consistently, nappy changing can become a daily chore that you dread.
If you find yourself getting frustrated, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with asking for help from your spouse, family member or even an older child in your household.
Be sure to express to your help exactly what you need from them whether it’s keeping the baby entertained, delivering you essential items or actually just doing the change for you. Just a little help can go a long way to change a nappy change from a battle to something that is a fun, interactive experience with your baby.
You Got This Dad!
We all know a fussy or wriggly baby can be a challenge for any new dad. Good news is that now you are equipped with some expert-level techniques on how to change your little angel’s nappy.
Do what feels right and makes you comfortable - you are a great dad and you know your child best. Although you may not always hear it out loud …
You are doing an amazing job, Dad.