Diaper leaks at night are tiring and frustrating.
I remember waking up to my whining, crying baby at 3 am because she leaked through her diapers.
I had to change her diapers and pajamas AND her crib’s mattress sheets and mattress protector too!
Then I had to put her back to sleep, and my little one is one of those babies that hates sleeping. Even if she’s obviously tired and sleepy.
So we were both up for another hour or two, with me testing out various sleep training techniques like the shush pat method and such.
I’m tired just thinking about those days.
In this article, I’m gonna share 18 tips and hacks on how to lessen and prevent overnight diaper leaks.
You’ll get to know the usual advice as well as some unconventional methods that can stop nighttime diaper leaks.
But first, let’s start with the causes of diaper leaks at night.
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Why Does My Baby’s Diaper Leak at Night?
Size and Fit of Diaper
An ill-fitting diaper is one of the most common reasons for overnight diaper leaks.
You’ll know if the diaper doesn’t fit your baby when it’s too loose or too snug.
It’s too tight when you see some red marks on their waist or thighs, or when they’re having diaper leaks almost every night.
If the diaper is too small or too big, it won’t be able to hold in properly the amount of urine from your baby.
If your baby is in between diaper sizes, that’s another cause of nightly diaper leaks.
If you didn’t put on the diaper properly:
- didn’t tighten the velcro tabs
- didn’t pull out the ruffles by the leg openings
- didn’t point down your baby boy’s penis
- that can also lead to nightly diaper leaks.
Absorbency of Diaper
Some babies are just heavy wetters and can produce unusually large amounts of urine and so a regular diaper won’t work for them.
Overnight diapers are specifically designed to have a higher absorbency, letting them absorb and hold more urine.
Baby’s Sleeping Position
Your little one’s sleeping position can also play a role in diaper leaks at night.
If your baby is a stomach sleeper or rolls onto their stomach, the front of the diaper may be unable to contain the urine and may leak out the top or sides.
Newborns and younger babies tend to produce more urine, as they have small bladders and they don’t have bladder control yet.
Which leads to more urine outputs that can lead to diaper leaks at night.
Older babies who are eating solid food will start to produce more solid waste at night. This can contribute more to the heaviness of the diaper, leading to leaks.
Babies with health issues such as diarrhea or UTI or those that are taking some form of medication can also have more urine output, causing more overnight diaper leaks.
9 Ways To Stop Overnight Diaper Leaks
Choose the right diaper size and fit
This is what I usually tell my mom friends dealing with nightly diaper leaks.
Simply going up a size (or sometimes down), can already stop instantly overnight diaper leaks!
So be vigilant. Check out if your baby’s current diaper fits.
Make sure the diaper fits snugly around the baby’s waist and thighs, with no gaps that could allow urine to escape.
If the diaper feels too tight or leaves marks on the baby’s skin, try a larger size.
If it’s too loose, try another brand, as some diapers suit skinny babies or chunky ones.
Or go down a size if needed.
Put diapers on properly
Make sure that leg ruffles are pulled out, as that can help with side leaks.
Check if the tabs are too tight or too loose.
Make sure the diaper is facing the right way.
These tips might seem so obvious and silly but if you’re a parent with newborn sleep deprivation, you can easily forget the basics.
Use overnight diapers
Overnight diapers are designed to be more absorbent and can provide extended protection. They are also often designed with extra padding in the front to help prevent leaks.
So look for a heavy-duty, overnight diapers (that’s also great for diaper blowouts) that’s highly recommended by a lot of parents.
I always read reviews and if I see that a diaper has a lot of positive reviews, most especially about its absorbency overnight, then you should at least try that diaper.
Try another diaper brand
One brand that works well on another baby, can horribly leak for another.
So sometimes, you have no choice but to try out different brands until you get the one that fits your baby comfortably and absorbs really well, better than the others.
Use diaper liner pads
Examples of these are the Sposie pads and Dimples Booster Pads. They are these extra pads you put in the diaper, to make them more absorbent and to hold more pee.
They’re like a menstrual pad for overnight protection, except they don’t feel rough or itchy on your baby’s skin.
For most heavy wetters, they can work really well and are enough to stop overnight diaper leaks.
Changing diaper right before bed
Putting on a fresh new diaper can help in avoiding diaper leaks at night.
So make sure to change your baby’s diaper before putting them to sleep.
Related Article: When To Stop Changing Diapers At Night (For Uninterrupted Sleep!)
Adjust baby’s sleeping position
If your baby is a stomach sleeper or tends to roll onto their stomach during the night, try placing them on their back instead.
This can greatly help in preventing nighttime diaper leaks.
Use 2 diapers
I’ve never personally tried this as my baby then didn’t have a lot of diaper leaks, but some moms have tried putting on 2 diapers at night.
One even said she uses 3 diapers!
You can use an overnight diaper in the right size, then put on a regular diaper that’s one size up.
You can also try using a disposable diaper and then cover that with a cloth diaper.
Try cloth diapers
You can try using cloth diapers, especially if your baby tends to have some reaction or rashes against disposable diapers.
Cloth diapers can fit more snugly than regular diapers and can be customized with additional absorbent inserts as needed.
5 More Tips On How To Prevent Diaper Leaks at Night
Use pull-up diapers
Pull-up diapers are not necessarily better than regular diapers but I noticed some moms use this hack, which greatly reduced nighttime diaper leaks.
Related Article: Diapers vs Pull Ups (Differences, Pros, Cons, and More)
Use diaper covers
They can be used over disposable diapers to provide additional leak protection.
Diaper covers are waterproof, which can prevent urine from leaking out of the diaper.
Change diapers during night feedings
If your baby wakes up in the middle of the night, try to change their diapers.
A brand-new diaper has fewer chances of having leaks and your baby can sleep longer at night.
Use spare maxi pad
It sounds unconventional but I saw this tip in a popular parenting online group where one mom used a maxi pad on her baby and it completely stopped the nightly diaper leaks!
She shared that she was able to pinpoint the weak spot in the diaper and beefed it up with a maxi pad. Which, fortunately, didn’t irritate her baby’s skin in any way.
So if you’re desperate and you’ve tried everything, try using a maxi pad then.
Put it on backward
One mom shared in a popular parenting group that she puts on her son’s diaper backward because her baby is a stomach sleeper and his front gets wetter.
And that worked for her!
What Else Can You Do if Your Baby is Constantly Leaking Through Diapers at Night?
Avoid overfeeding before bedtime
Overfeeding your baby before bedtime can lead to a fuller bladder and increase the likelihood of leaks.
Try to feed the baby a smaller amount or finish feeding earlier in the evening to allow time for digestion.
Limit liquid intake
For older babies or toddlers who are bottle weaned or have stopped breastfeeding, try not to give them water an hour or two before bedtime.
Use 2 layers of mattress protection
Always use one on your bed, no matter what.
And stack a layer of mattress sheet and protector on top of one another.
So there’s added protection every night. Plus you can easily remove the 1st layer of the mattress sheet and protector if you need to change it, and you still have the 2nd later to protect your mattress!
Use waterproof pee pads
A waterproof, washable pee pad is an extra layer you can place on the crib, right under your baby, to prevent the mess from leaking through the mattress.
I find this very helpful when my baby was a newborn and when I had to potty trained her.
It really absorbed a lot of liquid and helped keep our mattress dry.
Consult a doctor
There might be some underlying medical condition contributing to your baby’s overnight diaper leaks, so consult your pediatrician if needed.
FAQ on Overnight Diaper Leaks
How do I stop my baby’s diapers from leaking at night?
You can stop your baby’s diapers from leaking at night by making sure that they’re put on properly, they fit your baby well, they absorb great, or by using 2 diapers!
Why does my baby’s diaper leak every night?
Your baby’s diaper leaks every night for the following reasons: ill-fitting diaper, diaper is not absorbent enough, baby is a stomach sleeper, they don’t a fully developed bladder or
Stop Diaper Leaks at Night: Takeaway
Just going up one diaper size or changing a diaper brand, most of the time, can already solve nightly diaper leak problems.
So always try that first and hopefully that will immediately stop the issue!
I hope the tips will help prevent your baby’s diaper from leaking at night.
And if you love this guide, then make sure to check Best Diaper Blowout Hacks, Best Diapers For Blowouts, and Huggies Little Snugglers vs Pampers Swaddlers.