Does Daycare Provide Diapers & Wipes (What To Expect & Packing List)

Daycare is one of the biggest concerns of a new parent. Not only are they entrusting the care of their baby to a new person, but there are so many components to it. One of the questions many parents ask is if they need to provide diapers and wipes for daycare.

Most daycares, both centers as well as in-homes, will require parents to provide diapers and wipes for their child because each child’s needs (and parental preferences) can vary so much. These can be brought in daily or by the box if the provider has enough storage space. Your daycare may have a specific policy regarding how many should be on hand.

Read on to find out more about daycares and the supplies needed.

Do daycares normally provide diapers and wipes?

When your child is first starting at daycare, it’s natural not to know what will and will not be provided, and a big concern is often whether or not you need to pack diapers for your child’s day.

Daycares typically require parents to supply diapers and wipes for their children. This is because babies may have different sensitivities and wear different sizes, making it challenging to provide diapers for everyone in the room. 

Sensitivities are one of the biggest concerns for providers. My children could only wear a specific brand and could only use unscented wipes, so making sure they had the correct diapers was essential. One daycare provider on Daycare.com said, “I wouldn’t want to provide disposable diapers due to possible allergies/sensitivities (though I admit sometimes it’s been tempting).”

Some daycares may also provide only wipes to make it easier on providers.

Another provider stated on daycare.com, “I provide wipes, but not the diapers. When I only had one or two in diapers, I had the parents provide the wipes too. However, it makes it easier when I have 5 babies in diapers to provide my own and not have 5 different containers of wipes!”

While not as common, many daycares choose to provide their own supply of both diapers and wipes. They will usually provide only one brand of diapers and wipes and will often charge a fee for using these. If parents prefer a different brand or the baby has a sensitivity to it, the parents would be responsible for providing them.

Since this is not the norm, one mom on a baby forum was shocked after touring a potential daycare and stated, “We’ve been starting to look at daycares for LO and had our first tour today. We have a few more set up, but at today’s, they informed me that they would provide the basic diapers, formula, and wipes as part of the tuition cost. I was not at all expecting this.”

When touring daycares, it is important to ask what the daycare’s policy is. This way, you are prepared and know what all your options are.

How do you label diapers for daycare?

Labeling diapers will depend on how you are transporting them and if they are being stored at the daycare.

The two main ways to get diapers to and from daycare are to bring them daily in a bag, or you may leave a box or package at the daycare facility. How you do it will vary by daycare provider.

At some daycares, storage may be limited, so you may need to bring a bag daily that contains all the items needed for the day. While it can be cumbersome, doing this will mean no real need to label your individual diapers since they will be in your child’s personal bag with all their other supplies and extra clothing.

However, some daycares have more storage and can keep larger amounts of diapers on hand. If you send a package or box, it is best to label both the box and the packages inside it with a sharpie since the packages may end up being stored on a changing table. Be sure to keep an eye out for notices about being low on diapers so you can be sure to send another package or box as soon as possible!

How many diapers should you send to daycare?

How many diapers you need to send to daycare will depend on how often your baby’s diapers are changed. Most daycares will at the very least check diapers every two to three hours, but some will go as far as changing them at every check, regardless of whether the diaper is soiled or not.

As a good rule of thumb, you should send one diaper for every 2 hours your baby is in care plus 2-4 extra, just in case of emergencies. If your child is in care for 10 hours, that will be 5 diapers, plus 2-4 diapers to be on the safe side for a total of 12-14 diapers. 

Likely, you won’t actually need every one of these diapers every day, but it’s better to have too many and be able to carry them over to the next day than for your child to run out!

Be sure to check to see what your daycare’s policies are so you have a better idea of how many diapers you will actually need to send. You also may find that fewer diapers are being used during the day than expected. Adjust at that point but be sure to have a couple of extras as well.

How many wipes should you send to daycare?

One package of wipes a week should cover your baby’s wiping needs. If you send them in the bag, check the package daily and replace it or add another once you start to get low. As with the diapers, you will be able to tell how fast the wipes are running out after a couple of weeks.

Some daycares may have the wipes stored in a separate area like a changing table. If they do, be sure to label your wipes with a sharpie, writing your child’s name in large letters. If you are sending a large case of wipes, label the box and each individual package.

Complete packing list for what to send to daycare

Along with diapers and wipes, you will need to pack a variety of other supplies for your baby to use throughout the day.

Here is what most daycares require each day:

  • 8-10 diapers – This should cover your baby for a 10 hour day. Add more if needed!
  • 1 package of wipes – This should also cover your baby’s needs for the week. When the package gets low, add another package to the bag.
  • 2 extra outfits – During the day, your baby may get dirty or have a blowout requiring a change of clothing. Be sure to have a couple of outfits just in case.
  • Bottles – Some daycares may require you to have premade bottles of formula or breastmilk for each feeding. Others may need you to supply the bottles and the milk. Either way, bottles are needed!
  • Formula or breastmilk – Like stated with bottles, how this is done will depend on the facility. Some will require everything ready-made, while others will require you to bring in the expressed milk or a can of formula.
  • Diaper rash cream – Be sure to include information on when and how often your baby will need to have cream put on them.
  • Medications – Just like with the cream, please include information on when to give medication and sign any forms permitting this.
  • Pacifiers or any other comfort item – If your baby needs a pacifier for naptime, be sure to send a few in the bag or to keep at the facility to ensure your baby has a replacement if one should get misplaced. For older children, a blanket or some comfort item is typically welcomed for naptime use only.

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