As a new or expectant parent, you are faced with a whole host of decisions that probably never occurred to you before you brought this precious new life into the world. Should you breast feed or bottle feed? Should you go to baby as soon as he starts crying, or give him a few minutes to cry it out? Is co sleeping OK, or should you always put your baby into her own crib? Should you use disposable diapers or cloth diapers? And, when it comes down to it, why should you use cloth diapers for your baby?
There are many well known reasons it is better to use cloth diapers for your baby than disposable paper and plastic diapers. Perhaps best known is the fact that disposable diapers can cause or aggravate diaper rash. This is not to say that babies who are cloth diapered will never get a diaper rash, but the likelihood of a baby in disposable diapers getting a diaper rash is over eight times that of a baby in a cloth diaper. Another good reason to use cloth diapers is that it costs less. Even if you use a diaper service, your savings will be substantial. And, if you launder the diapers yourself, you could save as much as $1,600 per year in diaper costs. That’s money that could be better spent, to say the least. Additionally, most people are aware that disposable diapers create and enormous amount of waste that will stay in our landfills for generations to come. Cloth diapers are washed and reused, causing significantly less waste material and are therefore better for the environment.
With all of these reasons showing cloth diapers as the better choice, it might make you wonder why anyone would choose disposable diapers. Simply put, people choose disposables for convenience. While it is true there are some circumstances, such as travel, where being able to simply throw diapers away does pose an advantage, there have been many advances in the manufacture of cloth diapers that cause them to be nearly as convenient as disposables. These advances include Velcro tabs, which replace the old diaper pins, flushable liners that make cleanup a breeze, and pre folded, fitted, and “all in one” diapers, all of which make diapering with cloth as easy as or easier than with disposables.