Have You Discovered Your Elimination Communication Confidence?

The Classic Position for Elimination Communication

The Classic Position for Elimination Communication

We hold him with his back safely against my belly, with my hands supporting his thighs from below, his body slightly reclining. This ‘classic position’ helps the baby to do his business with ease. Tightening my stomach muscles helps him to know when to go, as does turning on the tap.

The Key Approach to Elimination Communication

Commitment and persistence is the key in the early days, as it is really important the baby doesn’t get used to being wet, and feels familiar with beign held in the squat position (or on the potty) and hearing the cue sound. Surprisingly soon (in baby time) the nappy use really drops and it gets easier. It is important to have them not reliant on nappies as their ‘toilet’ within a few months. I clearly remember the first afternoon we kept his nappy dry for several hours. I was so proud of us! Dry streaks are very motivating, all the way through – they are a little personal goal to strive for.

Elimination Communication: I wish all Mums knew this!

I cannot count the number of times giving the baby a pee break was the solution to a fussy baby. Especially when breastfeeding, if he stopped during a feed, popping on and off, or refusing to stay attached, once he had a pee break, he’d continue happily. If he was grizzly and squirmy at other times, very often it was the need to poop making him uncomfortable – after a good ‘go’, he’d simply go to sleep! I wish every Mum knew this ‘response tool’ to help baby through a fussy patch – holding baby in the classic elimination position to gain some relief. It is empowering for your confidence, knowing one more way to respond to and HELP your baby. Saving nappies is secondary to this wonderful benefit – ‘talking with’ your baby.

Elimination Communication: HOW many nappies? Use a nappy service!

The amount of cloth nappies you go through in those early days to keep baby dry is insane – but we were seeing the benefits before he was even two months old. A nappy service is such a glorious thing – nappies arrive at door, are used with abandon, then leave the next week, no washing involved. A flannel covered elastic belt is easier to use than pins – we never used them again once I made one.

Lots of nappies during the learning curve so baby is used to being dry, just like we are!

In the first few weeks we ran out four or five days into our week long supply of nappies, and used plastics on the weekends, still offering pee-breaks, but a few misses would go into the nappy before we could really tell, so it was actually a bit of a break at the time! By ten weeks I’d dropped the number down to thirty. Over time there were less and less nappies being wet, from a whopping eighty or more in the first weeks (“Get it off!” We’d say the instant it was even barely wet) to less than twenty in a week when the nappy service ended at sixteen weeks.

Elimination Communication: Nappies became a tool, used casually, rather than something always on the baby

By that time they were being used for every spill just to use them up as we were practising lots of nappy free time. Once the nappy service ended we were confident in our skills, and the amount of ‘extra’ washing was easily incorporated into our normal washing load, and was no big deal at all. We used training pants, some disposables, nappy free mats, and held him nappy free when in-arms, as it became easier to read his signs and our confidence grew.

Elimination Communication: Disposable nappies had their place for sure

We always used disposables on outings until around four months when we were better able to keep them ‘unused’, then began practising with undies ‘OneWet Pants’ (padded training pants) on short trips until we got better skills and confidence, now we use them most of the time. For family visits, long visits we’d use disposables too just for peace of mind, although we’d still use them as a back-up, giving baby pee breaks and changing if wetness was found. We keep our spares in the car just in case we need them one day while out. I carried a spare around for six months before realising it was a bit pointless to do so.

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