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A mother changing a baby's diaper to prevent it leaking overnight.
newborns

how to prevent your baby’s diaper leaking overnight

3 minutes

10/20/2021

When you’re exhausted from a happy but non-stop day of parenting, the last thing you want to deal with is your baby’s diaper leaking overnight. Here, we share some helpful hints and tips for how to avoid the very common night-time dilemma of diaper leakage.

  1. waWhy does my baby’s diaper leak at night?

  2. Check the nappy fits snuggly

  3. Is nappy too big?

  4. Is nappy too small?

  5. Change your baby’s diaper just before bed

  6. What to do if your baby's diaper does leak


Why does my baby’s diaper leak at night?

There are few things more frustrating than checking on your baby at night, only to find the sheet they’re lying on drenched in pee – or worse, poo. If this is happening to you, don’t worry. Almost all new (and many experienced) parents face a battle with a diaper leaking overnight at some point, but there’s lots you can try to stop diaper leakage from becoming a common occurrence.

Check the diaper fits snuggly

One of the most common reasons for a diaper leaking overnight is that the diaper isn’t fastened properly. Before you put baby to bed, make sure their diaper is fitted snugly to their body, that it’s securely done up, and that there are no gaps – including gaps between the diaper and baby’s back, the diaper and baby’s tummy and the diaper and baby’s thighs.

Is diaper too big?

Little ones tend to move around a lot when they’re sleeping and even the most well-fastened diaper can consequently slip and cause diaper leaking overnight – this is especially true if the diaper is a little bit too big for baby.

When next fastening baby’s diaper, try running your finger around the edges. If there’s a gap (even a little one) between the diaper and baby’s waist or the diaper and baby’s legs, then it means liquid can and will escape and you may need to try a smaller size.

Is diaper too small?

The smaller the diaper the less liquid it absorbs, so if you’re regularly waking up to a saturated diaper or wet baby bed sheets, it might be time to go up a size.

Red marks on baby around the diaper area are also a sign that a change in diaper size is needed, as it means the diaper is too tight. A too-tight diaper can also cause diaper rash.

Change your baby’s diaper just before bed

One of the best tips for avoiding a diaper leaking overnight is to change your baby just as you’re about to put them to bed, as a fresh diaper will take longer to become saturated. And to really maximize your chances of baby staying dry overnight, you could also try changing them just before you go to bed.

For some helpful diaper changing tips, read our diaper changing guide.

What to do if your baby’s diaper does leak

If you’ve ticked off all of the above and your baby’s diaper is still leaking at night, try and identify which part of the diaper didn’t do its job. If you feel the leakage came from the back, pull the diaper up a little bit higher over baby’s bottom the next time you put them to bed. If you think the leak came from the side or thigh area, make doubly sure in future that the leg gathers aren’t folded inwards. If the tummy area is responsible and you have a little boy, remember to point their penis downwards (rather than upwards) when fastening their diaper.

As for the mess itself, a quick wipe with WaterWipes will have baby clean and fresh in no time, leaving you to go back to bed (for a few hours at least).

If you found these hints and tips helpful, why not take a look at some of the other articles on our Parenting Hub? For example...

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