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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Cloth Diapering

Looks like I'm about to jump into the world of cloth diapering. I've been putting this off for many reasons as you probably already know what those are. But my poor little Griffin has such horrible eczema, especially during the cold months, that I'm now willing to try just about anything to help him get relief. Eczema covers him from head to toe, but it is much worse around his diaper area on his lower back and bottom. He will scratch and dig into his skin until he bleeds. I haven't found any magical cure - creams, lotions, potions, or meds - to help clear up this problem. His dermatologist has prescribed a slew of prescription creams and oils, all of which work temporarily. So...I'm going to try using cloth diapers for a while to see if it helps control the eczema around his back and bottom.

I know cloth diapering is as old as the hills, but to me its a bit intimidating. Have you seen the selection of cloth diapering options lately? Good grief! There are all-in-ones, flat fold, prefolds, inserts in cotton, fleece or hemp, one-size-fits-all diaper covers, sized diaper covers, velcro or buttons, and the list goes on. My hope is to get the most practical, easiest to clean and use, and cost effective. Prices for these things can range from $3.00 all the way up to over $20 for a diaper cover. Wow! Just to contain poop and pee?! For my trial run, I've opted for Happy Heiney's one-size cover (which can be handed down to Baby 4), a sized Tweedle Bug cover and some Thirsties duo inserts for naptime and overnight. It seems to me that the covers are the most expensive part and I'm hoping I can use cotton prefold diapers as inserts that can be purchased fairly inexpensively from Walmart or Target.

I've also read that you shouldn't use Desitin or other zinc or petroleum based creams with cloth diapers. And the recommendation is to not use bleach on the inserts. Sheesh! Really?! No one is making this cloth diapering thing easy. I just won't feel like the inserts are getting clean without a good dose of bleach. I may do it anyway and break away from all the "green" rules for cloth diapering. My neighborhood has restrictions against having clothes lines so we won't be able to hang them outside to benefit from the sun's natural bleaching and sanitizing qualities.

Does anyone have any experience with cloth diapering? Any advice for a mom starting out in this area?

5 comments:

Kristy said...

Definitely cannot use the aquaphor with the cloth diapers. It builds up on the fabric and then they won't absorb the liquid. You could try using vinegar(also a great disenfectant) instead of the bleach. And you can always hang them out to dry at your mom's.

ScrappinAway said...

This fellow blogger has done several posts on it! here is a link to one of them:
http://raisingmylilladybug.blogspot.com/2010/05/cloth-diapering1-year-later.html
There is also a store in West Knoxville on Kingston Pike that specializes in it and the staff is really helpful and they carry most brands! -Pam
p.s. I had to make my blog private to due some issues but if you are interested in following I can send you an invite. Totally cool if not, I know you are super busy!

Emily said...

Pam, please send me an invite to your blog. I'd love to keep up with you guys that way.

The store in W. Knox called Cutie Tooties is closing in about 2 weeks unless they get a buyer to take over. I stopped in there and the lady was super helpful and that's why I ended up with the dipes that I now have. I noticed that Babies R Us is beginning to carry a pretty large selection in stores so I may have to check them out too.

I'll read up on the blog you sent about cloth dipes. I can use all the tips that I can get.

Kristy, thanks for the tip about vinegar. I'll def try it out. If you see a line of dipes hanging out at my parents' you'll know where I've been :-)

A Magic Bean Buyer said...

We partially cloth diaper "Buttercup" (i.e. she wears them when we're home) and I've found this site to be pretty helpful:
http://jilliansdrawers.com/
The prefolds they sell are nice and thick and the snappi fasteners take away the fear of jabbing her with a pin (she kicks).
We do soak and wash with bleach and use a zinc diaper cream (Boudreaux's) and I haven't had any problems with either making them less absorbent.

Linda said...

Em, you wore cloth diapers when you were a wee one. I preferred the super long gauze diapers, which could be folded to adapt to a newborn or a toddler. I kept a diaper pail 1/2 full of water with a handful of baking soda dissolved in it to control the ammonia smell. At laundry time, I dumped the contents of the diaper pail into the washer, set to spin, and then restarted using hot water and a mild detergent. Rarely did I use bleach. White vinegar works well, too. Hanging the diapers out in the sun was the best disinfectant! The worst part about cloth diapers is that you sometimes have to swish them out in the commode to remove "solids." However, you can purchase diaper liners which reduce the mess. I used zinc oxide with cloth diapers without a problem of build-up. The hot water and sunlight removed any residue. Unlike disposable diapers which a baby can wear for a longer time, cloth diapers must be changed more often. And, yes, you can hang out the diapers at our house! They smell wonderful after drying in the sun and wind.