Diapering during the day has one big advantage over night time diapering – you are awake to do the changing! Frequent changes aren’t such a big deal when you don’t have to sacrifice a few precious moments of sleep to do them! At night, we are all looking for a diaper solution that will let baby slumber away without any leaks, and (more importantly) without waking Mom and Dad for a night changing! Even if babe is up anyway for a feeding, sometimes the disturbance of having their diaper changed convinces them that it is time to wake up and play. And although I love my kids with every fiber of my being, at 3 am, I just want them to GO TO SLEEP!!!
Different Kids Need Different Things
As with daytime diapers, every kid has a diaper solution that works for them that might not work for another kid. My daughter could sleep 12 hours leak free in an All in Two with a booster. We tried the same with our son once he was big enough for them, and he could wet right through it within a few hours. Bad for me, but great for you lucky readers, because you get to reap the benefits of my leaky trial and errors!
The basic key to finding a great overnight solution is to have lots of absorbency. Through my personal experimentation, I found that the best way to accomplish this was by using a fitted diaper. They are awesome because they can absorb every part of them. By morning, the front, back and even the tabs under the snaps on my son’s diapers are wringing wet. They also tend to be made of natural fibers such as cotton or bamboo which hold a lot of moisture.
Any cover will work with a fitted diaper, but I have been completely won over by wool covers. Not only do they do a great job of preventing leaks, but they also feel so much softer and cozier than any other cover I have come across. Wool works in two ways: first, the lanolin in the wool forces the diaper underneath to absorb to its absolute maximum. Then the wool itself starts to absorb up to 1/3 of its weight. The fitted diaper that works best for us is the Sleep diaper which contains the Dimple Diaper and Cover. together. It is made of organic cotton, and its dimpled texture helps it to absorb a ton of pee. I was absolutely amazed by it – it weighs about 10 pounds (completely subjective – I haven’t actually measured) by the morning. It comes with its own booster as well, which is great for adding absorbency (and hopefully another few minutes of sleep!)
I personally love the Loveybums Wool Cover. It is stretchy Merino wool and has extra layers of fabric in the “wet zone” to do an even more impressive job of stopping leaks. As well, it is super easy to care as far as wool goes. I wash ours every 1-2 weeks using Sheepish Grins Foaming Wool Wash, which is a very quick process – just give it a quick wash in warm water, roll it in a towel to dry and then lay flat to dry completely. Since Wool Wash contains lanolin, the cover doesn’t need to have lanolin added each time it is washed. Every few washes, or if I feel the cover isn’t repelling moisture well, I will give it a few sprays with Lanolin Spray to restore its waterproof abilities and it is good as new.
Another way to use a wool cover is to use your regular daytime diaper (with an extra absorbent insert) and put the wool cover over the entire thing. The wool will catch any small leaks. It may look bulky, but I'd rather a bubble butt than have to change a wet bed in the middle of the night!
If you are having issues with leaks with your night time diaper, here is the very first troubleshooting step – is the entire absorbent component of the diaper soaked? If it is, you need to add more absorbency, either by using a more absorbent material (e.g. cotton, hemp) or adding another layer to your diaper. Prefolds make an awesome addition, as they are super absorbent, and if you used them on your baby when they were really wee, then you may already have them in your stash! If this isn’t the problem, then give me a call, and we can troubleshoot together.
Happy diapering and I hope we all get some much-needed sleep!