Why We Use Cloth Diapers

28 Dec


I love cloth diapers

Better for Baby:

  • Baby is less likely to suffer from irritation or rashes when using cloth diapers.  We used disposable diapers for the first couple weeks but as soon as we switched to cloth Eli’s diaper rash disappeared.  He has been almost completely rash free for a year.  It is great not to have to slather yucky Desitin all over his behind each diaper change!
  • Disposable diapers contain Tributyl-tin which is a hormone disrupting chemical and pollutant.  The part of the diaper that gels and gets squishy when wet is sodium polyacrylate.  A similar substance was banned from tampons because it was linked to toxic shock syndrome.  Bleach diapers (most disposable diapers are bleached) contain dioxin a by-product of the bleaching process.  The Enviromental Protection Agency recognizes it as the most toxic carcinogen.  Why would I want my sweet baby exposed to such toxic chemicals so closely to his skin?
  • The Archives of Disease in Childhood published research in 2000 that revealed that the scrotal temperature in boys is increased when they are wearing disposable diapers.  Continued use of disposable diapers could abolish the physiological testicular cooling mechanism which is important for normal spermatogenesis.  Basically this could affect your sons fertility one day.
  • Disposable diapers have also been linked to asthma.
  • I also wonder about other potential dangers which have not yet been studied.  To my knowledge there have not yet been any studies which questioned the safety of disposable diapers in regards to close proximity to the skin and genitals.

Better for the Family:

  • The economic advantages to cloth diapering are substantial enough without every other reason.  On average it cost $80-100 a month for disposable diapers.  The estimated cost to cloth diaper one child from birth to potty training is $2300.   We estimate that by the time Eli is potty trained we will have spent $300.  Not only will we have saved a ton of money but we also will have a complete stash of diapers for the next baby.  If you weren’t planning on having a second baby you can easily resell your diapers.  They maintain much of their worth and should be seen as an investment.  
  • Cloth Diapers are surprisingly convenient.  I never have to make my sweet husband run to KMart late at night because I realized I am almost out of diapers.  Instead I just throw the diapers into the washer, dry them and we are ready to go.  Cloth only means a couple extra loads of laundry a week which isn’t inconvenient at all.  It would be much more inconvenient to have to load up Eli, go to the store, get Eli out, shop for diapers, put Eli back into his car seat, and drive home.   

Better for the World:

  • Did you know that 4% of the garbage in landfills is disposable diapers?  For a household that includes a baby disposable diapers account for 50% of their trash. 
  • The poop in diapers is supposed to be flushed down the toilet so that it can be properly treated by the sewer system, but most people don’t do that.  Instead landfills are full of untreated waste which can leak into the ground water. 

5 Responses to “Why We Use Cloth Diapers”

  1. Renee December 28, 2010 at 6:05 am #

    I had never even heard of cloth diapers until I came to seminary, but they seem like a good idea!

  2. Emily Morrell January 1, 2011 at 5:02 pm #

    Oh no, this is a bit convincing! I don’t think Tommy will be happy that I read this! You will totally have to help me with “mommying” one day.

    • emersonfamily January 1, 2011 at 5:18 pm #

      I’ll be looking forward to it! They really aren’t as scary as they sound. He just needs to see them in person. Brandon was slightly hesitant till we did some math and he changed one. Then he was pretty much hooked! When the time comes y’all just come visit and we’ll give you the low down on cloth. 🙂

  3. Merilee January 19, 2011 at 8:53 pm #

    Are they one-size fits all, or do you purchase sizes?

    • emersonfamily January 21, 2011 at 1:58 am #

      We have a variety actually. We own some Bumgenius which are one size, but we also use prefolds with Bummis Super Whisper Wrap covers. For the covers you do have to purchase sizes but they are actually the cheaper way to go in my opinion. Eli is 13 months old and I have only purchased 2 sizes so far. The current size will last for a long time too. If you’d like more specifics let me know! I love cloth diapering. 🙂

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