18th Oct2010

Our Reusable Diaper Experience

by Joe and Christi

We have two kids and one one the way. We mainly use reusable diapers, but are not so anti-disposable diapers that we do not use them at all. They are nice when going on vacation, for sleeptime, or let's face it, everyone needs to have a lazy day. What was the primary reason for us choosing to use reusable diapers? Really there were two: price (My Husband) and health (Me). Cost Savings My husband wanted to save money, and even made about 20 diapers by hand and sewing machine before giving up. He drew out some pretty nice templates, added velcro and elastic, but he couldn't figure out how to make a reusable diaper that is both one size fits all and doesn't leak. Some look surpisingly nice and we still use them by putting a plastic cover over it. The blue diaper you see at the beginning of this article is actually one he made.

Concerning the savings you get from reusable diapering, the question frequently arises, "What about laundry detergent? Doesn't that add up?" The solution to this legit question is simple: home made laundry detergent. It is very simple to make and it saves a BUNCH of money! Switch just for the sake of saving money, even if not for reusable diapers. The recipe is easy: 1 bar of Zote Soap or Fells Naphta Soap, a cup of Borax, and a cup of Arm and Hammer Washing Soda. Mix all three things with hot water in a 3 gallon bucket.

The largest money saving aspect of reusable diapers is obvious: the cost of disposable diapers. Every time you change your baby with a disposable diaper and disposable wipes, you spend approximately 20 – 70 cents, depending on brand and size of diaper. Therefore at 50 cents a diaper, at 8 diaper changes a day, that's $4 a day, or about $120 a month (not including wipes). Do you see how spending 赨 in cloth diapers easily rules over disposable diapers in the financial game? Another huge factor not in this equation is you can use the same reusable diapers from child to child! Our diapers are still in great condition after two children so far. If you search wikipedia for diapers, you will find "an average child will go through several thousand diapers in his life." Do the math.

Health As for my primary reason in going green, I heard cloth diapers are better for my baby's skin, as opposed disposable diapers, which often include chemicals. After doing some research I found this rumor to be true over and over, often with one additional component: more frequent diaper changes. Otherwise diaper rashes, yeast infections and other diaper associated problems are equally as likely to develop. Overall, two years and two babies later, we are very pleased with having used reusable diapers. As for the extra workload? Basically an extra load of laundry. I am unsure if there have been health benefits from using cloth diapers, because it seems like our children have the same amount of diaper rashes as children who wear disposable diapers.

One thing that I believe is an additional benefit is comfort and appearance. Would you like to walk around in underwear stuffed with tissue-paper, or soft-cotton? Maybe you wouldn't care one way or the other, but I would choose the cotton. I see no reason that we will not continue the cloth-wearing adventure in our household. Reusable diapers are immensely cheaper, easy, cuter, more comfortable, possibly better for your baby, and better for our environment (according to wikipedia, "3.4 million tons of [disposable] diapers are added to landfills each year"). Hopefully this article was helpful to you. Visit my site below for more articles about anything natural with babies.

Author: Christi Bednarek
Homepage: NaturalBabyIdeas.com

 

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