With Bobcat we use cloth diaper most of the time, I’d say 90% of the time. We only use disposable (bio-degradable) nappies during the night and when we’re out and about for a longer time (longer than half a day).
The 2 main reasons we switched to reusable diapers are: they helped him with his eczema. Essentially, we reduced allergens getting in contact with his skin. The other reason is that I’m a mama with a green heart, so it was very important for me.
But there’s some other known and less known advantages. So here are the reasons why you should do the switch too:
- Environmental impact. Yeah, we all heard about that one. But let the numbers talk. An average child undergoes approximately 6.500 nappy changes by the time of turning two and a half years old. Over 8.000.000 nappies are thrown away daily in the UK. It will take 200 to 500 years to decompose a branded disposable nappy. (The bio-degradable nappy decomposes in 50 years.) They produce 2.3 times more waste water and 60 times more solid waste than real nappies.
- Impact on baby’s health. TBT, a chemical compound which is known to disrupt sex hormones, has been found in disposable nappies. It is something which should not being in contact with babies’ skin. Not to mention the super absorbent chemicals, paper pulp and adhesives. Other bleaches, colorants and fragrances also increases the chance for allergy – just like in Bobcat’s case. (Eczema)
- Impact on your wallet. Reusable nappies can save parents up to£600 per child. If you use the nappies for another child too, that’s £1.200. These savings can be greatly increased if you don’t tumble dry them, wash them on 60 degrees only and without fabric softener.
- Impact on potty training. Bobcat is a late talker. But since we’re using cloth diapers, he lets me know when he’s done a poo. Or when he feels too wet. That slight discomfort well worth it: whilst earlier he avoided to be changed, now he takes my hand, leads me to his changing mat and “asks” to be changed. That’s a step closer to potty training. With reusable nappies babies tend to potty train much earlier.
- Great absorbance. Even with really explosive poo, the cloth nappy performs better. It’s easier to detect when a nappy needs changing as disposable nappies bulk up and draw moisture away, so that you’d think the nappy was dry.
Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments!
Eye candy 🙂
Ok, I admit that’s not the most important feature of the cloth diapers, but hey there are so many adorable patterns that make the changing enjoyable for mommies! 🙂
Good point 🙂 I absolutely love his Sponge Bob patterned diapers! And he likes them too.
I used washable nappies on both my girls. I am now less convinced of the environmental benefits. Drying them on the line leaves them stiff and uncomfortable, so I did use the tumble drier. Also I don’t think the figures take into account the fact that a washable nappy can only last 4 hours max whereas a disposable can last 6 or even more – so you end up changing the washable nappy much more. And clothes get damp/wet with washables so they need washing more often too. Also nurseries are generally not geared up for it. I have heard of one locally that is, but that’s rare.
My target now is to potty train as early as possible – this really does have an environmental benefit (even if you have many changes of pants and trousers for a while!). I found a book called “Nappy Free Baby” by Amber Hatch which talks about how it is possible to potty train from a very young age – as shown by other cultures without any nappies at all.
Thanks for your comment!
I keep thinking the same. However, I wash the nappies with the other clothes, as they are never pooy. I use bamboo liners to keep the poo and I just flush them down the toilet. We never had any bugs, Bobcat is luckily very resistant to sicknesses.
Put the nappies in first for a rinse and spin, then chuck in the clothes and do a full wash. Since I use the same washing powder and no fabric conditioner at all, they all fine. And I do a load of laundry every day, so the nappies are not stacking up going smelly.
We have Little Bloom nappies and very happy with them.
I do agree on potty training, absolutely. we’re currently just waiting for Bobcat to start to talk properly as at the moment he only signs me when he’s finished and not beforehand. I’ll check that book, thanks for the tip.