Did you know that a newborn baby needs to have its nappy changed between 6-10 times a day? It adds up to several thousand nappy changes, if your child wears nappies until the age of 3. E.g. many hours and a lot of nappies.
Therefore, it is well worth it to spend a little time on designing a changing station where it is nice to be – for both you and your baby. Also at three o'clock at night when - with heavy eyelids and on autopilot - you get out nappies and wipes.
The changing station is there to help you
When you become a parent of a little new baby, it is quite natural that you do not have everything under control. Some things we learn along the way, while we feel our way forward. However, one of the things, which will be worthwhile having under control before the new baby moves in, is the changing station.
Already from day one, changing nappies will be a regular part of your and your baby's life. And you will be spending many hours together at the changing station.
In this checklist we guide you through your options – and give you good advice so that you can get a good changing station that actually makes your life easier.
#1: Choose a changing mat that is easily cleaned
You are going to use the changing station for many things. When dressing you child, at bath time – and for one-on-one moments. And then of course when the nappy needs to be changed. But let's face it. There will be other things than water on the changing mat when it is in use. If you choose a changing mat with cover, the cover must be washable when accidents happen. This means that you must wait while the cover spins around in the washing machine among dirty bodies and cotton nappies.
If instead you choose a changing mat with a waterproof surface, you can clean it immediately after the accident happens. All you need is a cloth, a little water and mild soap. Moreover, the waterproof surface prevents liquids from penetrating into the cushion. In this way you are sure that the changing station is always clean, neat – and ready for use.
Tip: You can slightly reduce your laundry pile by choosing a changing mat without cover – and which is waterproof. It just needs to be wiped with a cloth and you do not have to wash it all the time.
Soft and comfortable
The material of the changing mat does not only have hygienic importance. It also has importance for the comfort. The changing station must be nice to lie on for your baby. Feel your way through the changing mats, and choose one that is soft and comfortable and provides maximum support.
Without hormone disrupters
Your baby will spend many hours on the changing mat. You should therefore consider the material the mat is made of. Does it contain health hazardous substances or hormone disruptors?
#2: Think practical
If you live in an apartment with a small bathroom, you may not have room for a large changing table. Here you can instead go for a flexible changing mat, which does not require much space – only a stable surface. You can put it on a table, on the floor, in the kitchen and the living room. Precisely where you need it.
Tip: Go for a non-slip changing mat and a model, which can withstand being moved around many times. Then you avoid frayed edges and annoying (and expensive) replacements.
#3: Remember the space for storage
The good changing station has everything you need close by. In this way you will not have to run around with the baby on your arm, while you are looking for nappies and zinc ointment. It means something in everyday life – and particularly in the late-night hours when the both of you are tired.
If you have already started changing the nappy and suddenly you cannot find the bodies or the cotton nappies, it is rather inconvenient having to look for them several meters away – and perhaps even in another room.
5 things that are nice to have at hand:
- Washcloths or wipes
- Zinc ointment and baby care items
There are several ways to get room for the changing items. It depends on your room and the space you have available.
Dresser with drawers
If you arrange the changing station on a dresser, the drawers will provide space for many of the changing things you need — and then some. You will also have space for baby’s bodies, tops and socks. Choose a dresser with a good depth to get space for the changing mat. If the dresser is too short, you risk that the changing mat tips over with your child on it. And do also not forget to check the height. It is important that you obtain a good standing position at the table. Otherwise you risk straining your back.
When the changing period has passed, you can use the dresser in your child’s room for beautiful and practical storage of everything from clothes and socks to teddy bears and books. The dresser is therefore a solution that lasts for many years – and that can be used for different purposes.
Tip: Small prying fingers explore and investigate – also drawers. Drawers with soft close protect small fingers and make sure that they do not as easily get jammed
Changing table with shelves
If instead you choose a changing table without drawers, then consider choosing a design with shelves. It still allows you to have all the important stuff right at your fingertips.
Tip: For example you can use small baskets or boxes to keep all the small changing items in order. Create a harmonious look by choosing colours and materials to fit your room’s decor and style.
#4: Keep your little nugget safe
The larger your baby becomes, the more it will move. Therefore you should choose a non-slip changing mat – one that does not move when your baby kicks with his arms and legs. Also look at the material that the changing mat is made of – is it soft and safe for your baby?
Tip:The Matty changing mat is made of foam (PUR), which is soft and comfortable to lie on. In fact you do not need cotton nappies. The surface is soft as your skin, and it makes your baby calm and ready for a good one-on-one moment.
#5: Take care of your back
You will be standing many hours at the changing station. Because the changing station is not only for changing nappies. It is the place where you can talk, cuddle and have fun with your baby. And this goes for both mum and dad, and you probably do not have the same height. If you want to avoid straining your back due to a bad working position, it is worthwhile choosing a changing table that can be adjusted in height. This will give both of you a good working position – and a good contact with your baby.
We wish you and your baby many good one-on-one moments.