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Cloth Diapers vs Disposable Diapers:

Ever since Proctor and Gamble started making disposable diapers in 1961, the debate has raged. Which one is better: disposable, or cloth? Disposable diapers can be handy, especially for new parents who might be overwhelmed with everything involved with bringing up baby. They are easy to use, and easy to travel with. This makes them the first choice of many parents. Disposable diapers might leak less, too. Because of the drying crystals used in them, they also tend to wick moisture away from baby right away. However, when cloth diapers are used correctly, they don't leak the way disposable diaper manufacturers might want you to believe. There's a cost comparison as well. And not just financial. Many people, new parents included, have environmental concerns. No matter what you decide in the end, however, you need to be informed.

Will I Really Save Money?

Yes, you will. In-fact, using cloth diapers as opposed to disposable diapers will save you thousands of dollars. It's estimated that the use of disposable diapers over a three year period will run approximately $3,000 dollars. Using cloth diapers for the same amount of time will run you about $300 dollars. Quite a difference, right? You will also save money if you are planning to have another child, as cloth diapers can be reused. And believe it or not, they have a resell value. So if you're not planning on having another child, you can actually sell your used diapers on an online auction site. Of course, it also helps if you have an energy efficient washer, and are able to line dry at least half of the year. You might find you grow to love the smell of clothesline dried cloth diapers.

But Wait, What About The Smell?

Nothing that you're not already used to. Why? Because the truth is, cloth diapers should not smell any more than disposable diapers do. In-fact, some mothers say they smell better, if only because cloth diapers are not full of chemicals like disposable diapers are. You can use a diaper pail that has odor control, or sprinkle some baking soda on top. If you are still having problems with odor, make sure you are following these steps:
1. If you tightly roll the diaper up before putting in the diaper pail, make sure you snap it out before putting it in the wash. You want to make sure every inch of the diaper is being washed.
2. Don't use too much laundry detergent. Most detergents recommend more than necessary anyway (so you wind up buying more). Use one-half of what you normally use. Detergent that is not fully rinsed out can hold onto smells.
3. Hot water can set stains and odor, so if you can, do a cold water wash first and then a hot water wash. If you want, you can drop a dab of tea tree oil into the wash, as this can help eliminate odor as well.
Cloth diapers should be put in the dryer for 60 minutes, or line dried. Both types of drying will help to sanitize, which will help with getting rid of smells, too.

Remember You're Helping The Mother Of Us All, Mother Nature

The average child will use thousands of disposable diapers from birth to 3 years of age. And you know where those diapers wind up, right? It's estimated that 3.4 million tons of disposable diapers are added to landfills each year. Disposable diapers contain wood pulp, waterproof polyethylene, and synthetic polyacrylate. Of course, they also contain perfumes and other fragrances as well. Studies have shown that babies diapered in disposable diapers tend to suffer from more frequent diaper rash. There are two reasons for this. One, because there are more chemicals in a single-use diaper, that's more chemicals against sensitive skin. The second reason is because parents tend to change disposable diapers less often than they would cloth ones. Disposable diapers also add 84 million pounds of fecal matter to our landmines every year. In fact, Environment Canada reminds people that landfills are not meant to handle raw human waste. Those dirty diapers put sanitation workers as well as wildlife as risk.

No One's The Bad Guy Here

Look, you have to do what is right for your baby and you. And that means even if you use disposable diapers, you should not feel bad about it. You have enough on your plate with a new baby. What happens is that many new parents don't know much about cloth diapers, and it can be hard to get information on them. Pampers and Huggies are certainly not going to inform you about cloth diapers. The truth is, there are many options when it comes to using cloth diapers. You can go with the pre-folded type, an all in one type, or one of the cloth diaper ultras. It's all a matter of fitting your diaper needs to your lifestyle. Many new parents start out by using disposables at night and on car trips, and cloth diapers the rest of the time. Again, it's what is right for baby and you. With the well-being of your baby being your first concern, you are sure to make the right decision.