Why Your Baby Puts Their Hands In Their Diaper, According To Experts

Your baby likely has some baffling habits, and if they're anything like many babies, putting their hands in their diaper could be one of them. Parents balk at the thought of how many times a day those exploratory hands make it to the inside of their mouth and sanitation concerns are the first thing you think when you see those digits headed south. Reaching for the hand sanitizer yet again, you can't help but wonder, "why does my baby put their hands in their diaper for no good reason?"

Actually to your baby, there are perfectly good reasons. Pediatrician Dr. Preeti Puranik tells Romper this could be a response to irritation from a diaper or allergy-related rash, so parents would be wise to do a little investigation. While you're in there, you might actually find a dirty diaper to be the culprit.

But, Puranik explains, it may also be good old fashioned curiosity. "It's normal behavior of any baby to explore their body parts like rubbing ears or pulling hair. Touching or playing with genitalia is also a part of this behavior of exploring the body parts." It's easy to forget that essentially everything your baby's senses encounter are new experiences; the fun just never ends.

Still ready to nip the awkward habit in the bud? Liza Maltz, founder of New York City's Birth Your Own Way doula services, tells Romper that she recommends limiting baby's access by dressing him strategically. One piece outfits present a problem for wandering fingers, and zip-up pajamas make diaper expeditions nearly impossible. Maltz even suggests putting them in a sleep sack for snoozing if night is a popular diaper dive time — and put it on backwards, if necessary.

But unless it's truly bothering you, there's no reason to worry over the occasional hand in the diaper. Over time, your little love bug will find more interesting things to play with and will lose interest. As long as she's in a clean diaper and any rash has been treated, relax and breathe easy. And maybe load up on hand sanitizer.