Sunday, December 31, 2006

Claims About Cloth Diapers

Cloth diapers are beginning to make a comeback in many areas. The people who use them promote them as the environmentally-friendly, wonderful option for parents who really care about their babies. The reality, though, is that for most new moms and dads, disposables are the choice. What makes this difference and who is right?

First, let us consider why people would use cloth diapers. First they seem to be a better choice environmentally in terms of them not ending up in the landfill. Even after baby uses them, many moms and dads are willing to use them for cleaning cloths or other uses around the house. Eventually, though, even the clothies will end up in the landfill, too, though they will biodegrade faster than their disposable counterparts. Some people also point out the water waste let off by using cloth diapers. To use them and be sanitary, they need to be washed within a day of being used, and they should be washed in a form of baby bleach and hot water. That means that the water coming from the washer is no longer usable, so it creates pollution in that way.

Another reason that many parents use cloth diapers is that they believe them to be more comfortable on the bottoms of little guys and girls. Now, of course, no one knows whether they really are or not because these little ones cannot tell us either way. Most newborns are so busy trying to figure out what the heck just happened to them that they are unlikely to participate in any experiment to find out which they prefer.

In any case, some babies may express a preference. Disposable diapers are becoming more cloth-like, but the elastic bands on them and the gel on the inside still may bother some babies. Other babies may not like the wet feeling of the cloth diaper. Studies show that cloth diapered babies are potty-trained about six months before their disposable counterparts, and that fact is probably because babies can feel when they are wet or dirty easier in the cloth diapers. For babies with very sensitive skin, that may not be so comfortable.

Cloth diapers also have the reputation for being less expensive. The truth in that statement is debatable depending on the parents. Some parents purchase top-of-the-line cloth diapers. Taking care of these diapers in the proper way means washing them frequently, which means they likely will need to be replaced. Cloth diapers require detergent as well pins and elastic pants that will need to be replaced throughout the time the baby is using the cloth diapers. The electric bill will be more in addition because the diapers will need to be washed so often. On the other hand, disposable diapers must be purchased regularly. In the early months, babies will go through up to 10 diapers a day, which can become an expensive prospect.

Finally some parents believe that cloth diapers simply are better because they are more natural. On this point, there is no evidence to prove or dispute the point. Instead it depends on the person feelings of the parents. Some parents want to do everything as close to nature with their children and believe that doing so will improve the bonding process. Other parents want their lives to move as smoothly as possible, however, and find that cutting time in areas such as diaper changing allows the parents more time to complete other tasks.

Probably the biggest advantage that disposable diapers have other their cloth counterparts is that they are easier for traveling purposes. Cloth diapers will need pins, elastic, and baggies to put the used products in until the traveler arrives home. With disposable, it is just toss and go. Some parents choose to use cloth most of the time but are willing to use disposable when needed and more convenient on the road, airplanes, amusement parks, and similar places. Whatever you choose probably will not have a huge effect on your child and his or her development. Instead you may be making one in a pattern of decisions about childcare and life that your child will see. In the end, though, you should feel good about whatever choice you make.

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