I was forced into cloth diapering. I had no idea how easy and cost effective it was going to be. My seventh baby had a chronic rash for the first 9 months of his life. He had oozing, bleeding sores. We tried everything. Even steroid cream and that was really pushing it for me. Nothing worked except letting him go naked. We decided to switch to cloth diapers and his rash was gone within 3 to 4 days. I realized that it was a lot easier then I thought and if I used them on my other little guy in diapers and my little girl who still needed pull ups over night I would save $60.00 a month. My original supply was $150.00 so they paid for themselves within 3 months of using them. We discovered, had we used cloth diapers for all 7 of our children, we would have saved approximately $6,000.00 so far. Calculating the cost of generic brand diapers, I figured the savings is approximately $780.00 per child using cloth diapers and wipes if they potty train by 2 1/2. This was enough to convince me to use cloth diapers forever.
A friend of mine asked me to help give a class on the benefits of cloth diapering. I was excited to share how cost effective they were. I had know idea what else I would learn that day.
I've heard a saying "What you don't know won't hurt you". This was not the case for my little guy. Disposable diapers contain:
Dioxin: An extremely toxic by-product of the paper bleaching process. It is listed by the EPA as the most toxic of all cancer-linked chemicals. It has caused genetic defects in lab animals and is banned in most countries but not the U.S.
Tributyl-tin (TBT): A highly toxic pollutant that absorbs through the skin and even minute ammounts caused hormonal imbalances in humans and animals. It can also cause infertility.
Sodium Polyacrylate: A super absorbent polymer (SAP). It's the gel like substance that comes out when the diaper is too wet. It can cause allergic reactions, irritation, bleeding of the perineum or scrotal tissues, fever, vomiting, staph infection, and in 1985 was banned from being used in tampons because of it's link to Toxic Shock Syndrome. When injected into rats it caused internal hemorrhaging, cardiovascular failure and death.
Phyto estrogens: Just what it says "Estrogen". My baby boy's especially don't need any of this or God would have given it to them. The diaper area absorbs these chemicals very easily.
The emissions from ONE disposable diaper were high enough to produce asthma-like symptoms in rats.
I am not an environmentalist. I'm just a frugal mom who loves to stay home with my children and help my hard working husband. However, some of these facts were very interesting to me.
Over 300 lbs. of wood, 50 lbs of petroleum feed stocks and 20 lbs of chlorine are used to produce disposable diapers for one baby for one year.
Supposedly, a family can attribute 50% of their waste to disposable diapers. You could save money on your garbage bill!
10,000 tons of disposables are tossed into landfills each ear. That's 27.4 billion per year.
Had I known what I know now, I would have switched to cloth diapers a long time ago. I've tried a few different kinds and have found what I think is the easiest to clean, the cheapest to buy, especially in the long run, and the cutest on. They are All In One Pocket Diapers. When I first looked at these they were very expensive. The name brands can run around $20-$30 a diaper. I've found them for a fraction of that and am giving 3 away (Courtesy of GoGreenPocketDiapers) to anyone who is willing to try cloth diapering.
This business was started by a mom just like us and her customer service is the best I've ever seen. Her diapers are cute and cheap. They have all snaps, no velcro to wear out. They are adjustable from newborn all the way up to toddlers. One stash of these will last you for many children, just a one time cost!
To enter, you have to be willing to try Cloth Diapering and not doing it already. Just leave a comment on this link or the facebook link and I will enter your name in a drawing. I will draw names in one week. Next Tuesday, November 2. (Wow, November already!!)
(Just a side note. A lot of these chemicals are in your menstrual pads too. I don't know about you but I don't need any extra hormones. Especially after I have a baby. I'm going to make some cloth pads and will be posting soon!)