Many parents are taking a hard look at
the many health, developmental, environmental and economic advantages cloth
diapering has over disposable diapers.
1. Healthier Babies
Cotton is soft and breathable on baby's
Its natural absorbency is the polar opposite of the
combination of paper pulp, plastics and "super absorbent" chemicals
No harmful chemicals near baby like
Dioxin and SAP
Children who are diapered in cloth
generally potty train 6-12 months sooner than those in disposables. Potty
training is important for a childís confidence, sense of self and independence.
In 1955, virtually every baby in the U.S.
was diapered using cloth diapers and only 7% of babies had diaper rash. By
1991, approximately 90% of babies in the U.S. were diapered using disposables
and 78% of babies had diaper rash.
Disposables retain body heat, which
causes babies to have a higher temperature around their genitals, aggravating
rashes and potentially harming male fertility.
Infertility Attributed to Diaper Use (ABC News Report)
Linked to Infertility and Testicular Cancer
Parents who have used disposables testify
to the beads of clear gel, used to wick moisture, that are occasionally found
on their childís genitals. These chemicals can cause severe irritation,
allergic reactions and/or sensitivity.
Asthma rates are on a sharp incline in
the U.S. Harsh perfumes and chemical emissions have long been known to induce
asthma-like symptoms in children and adults.
Now, researchers have found
that disposable diapers might be a trigger for asthma. A study published in the
October, 1999 issue of the Archives of Environmental
Health found that laboratory mice exposed to various brands of
disposable diapers suffered increased eye, nose, and throat irritation,
including bronchoconstriction similar to that of an asthma attack.
An additional serious concern is the risk
that dioxin, a by-product of the paper-bleaching process, may exist in
single-use diapers. Dioxin in various forms has been shown to cause cancer,
birth defects, liver damage, and skin diseases.
The chemical dryness of a disposable has
produced a great lowering of standards in baby care. Parents are led to believe
that as long as the diaper feels dry, it's all right to leave on; it isn't. Dry
does not mean clean, and the urine absorbed by the chemicals in disposable
diapers stays right next to a baby's skin. (As do feces, which are a tremendous
breeding ground for noxious bacteria.) Chemicals are not a substitute for the
attention babies need, and "set-and-forget" diapering is not healthy.
2. Healthier Environment
are the diaper of choice for about 90% of Americans, according to the Personal
Absorbent Products Council.
This convenience comes at a cost to the Earth, beginning with the plastic, wood
pulp, chlorine, energy and water used in manufacturing. Itís the manufacturing
that uses the most resources and these diapers will still be in the landfills
at least 500 years from now!
In the United States alone single-use
items consume nearly 100,000 tons of plastic and 800,000 tons of tree pulp.
An average child will use between 8,000
-10,000 disposable diapers before being potty trained.
We will pay an average of $350 million
annually to deal with their disposal and, to top it off, these diapers will
still be in the landfill 500 years from now.
Americans throw away 570 diapers per
second. That's 49 million diapers per day.
Letting Diaper DuDee launder your cloth
diapers uses less than Ĺ the energy and 75% less water than home laundering,
due to more efficient equipment and load size.
The production of disposable diapers has
a harmful effect on the environment due to the use of water, chemicals,
plastics and other materials. It requires 5 times more energy, uses 8 times
more non-renewable raw materials, consumes 90 times more renewable resources,
and produces 2.3 times more waste water and 60 times more solid waste than
The feces that collects in landfills
creates a public health hazard and can contaminate groundwater.
Contrary to popular belief, no disposable
diaper -- not even biodegradable ones -- can break down in a landfill.
Not only do disposable diapers require
more water in manufacturing, but also more trees, energy and fuel.
3. Healthy Mind
Many parents who use disposables think
nothing of spending $15 or $20 on diapers when they shop for groceries, which
quickly gets hidden in the total grocery bill. Taking the real cost along with
the cost of additional diapering because of delayed potty training, it becomes
immediately apparent that cloth diapering is far less costly than single-use
Cloth diapering has progressed since the
folding and pinning of the 1980's and before.
Modern cloth diapering now
gives you the option of using diaper covers, which secure the diaper in place
with snap or Velcro fasteners: making pinning and extensive folding an ancient
As mentioned earlier, the average babies
wearing cloth diapers are toilet trained at 24-30 months, while the average age
for babies wearing single-use diapers is 30-42 months. This not only has
obvious economic implications, but it is highly significant for your baby's
With a service, all you do with a used
diaper is put it in the pail provided for your use.