Of all the things on your never-ending baby supply list, diapers are the one thing you just can’t live without once your newborn arrives. There’s no getting around having an ample supply of diapers on hand at all times. But before you head to the store to stock up, there’s a few things you need to keep in mind. Just like your other baby gear, there are different types of diapers on the market – different styles, sizes and brands. This means you have a few diaper decisions to make. For example cloth diapers vs. disposable diapers, brand name vs. no name etc. And not only that, you also need to think of how many diapers you’ll need and what size to stock up on at first. Every new mom is different, so make sure that you’re choosing the best diaper for you, your baby and your lifestyle.
First things first – Cloth or Disposable?
Before you even think about sizes or styles, you need to decide whether you’re going to use disposable or cloth diapers. Each comes with its own set of pros and cons so it’s good to be fully informed before you decide.
Disposable diapers are your one-time use only option. Once your little one’s diaper is full, it goes straight in the bin, nothing to save here.
Disposable diapers also come in natural versions that contain fewer chemicals (which can often be a better option for babies with more sensitive skin). Disposable diapers tend to cost more (considering how often baby needs to be changed, especially in the beginning) but can be better for your baby.
The downside of Disposable Diapers
If you do decide to go the disposable diaper route, it’s important to note that some ultra-absorbant diapers contain chemicals like sodium polyacrylate, which can absorb up to 100 times its weight in water. This same chemical was removed from tampons because of its link to toxic shock syndrome. While the two products aren’t used in the same way, it is good to be aware of the chemicals contained within your baby’s diaper.
Another potentially harmful chemical that can be found in trace amounts in disposable diapers is Dioxin – a by-product of the paper bleaching process. This chemical has been shown to cause cancer, birth defects, liver damage and skin disease. Keep in mind this chemical has only been shown to be in disposable diapers in trace amounts, however it can still be present.
Cloth diapers are your re-usable, multi-use option. There are different types of cloth diapers, so there’s sure to be one that suits your needs. Unlike the cloth diapers of long ago, today’s options are a great alternative to disposable diapers. They come in different fabrics, with options like velcro and snaps. There’s even cloth diapers that can be used for swimming.
The Downside of Cloth Diapers
But just like disposable diapers, there are some downsides to using cloth diapers. Cloth diapers do require a lot more laundry which can get expensive especially if you decide to go with a laundry service. Plus all that laundry can end up being more harmful to the environment than disposable diapers!
Some moms have reported more diaper rashes with cloth diapers because they are less absorbent and don’t have a good moisture barrier against the skin.
Cloth diapers also make changing baby on the go a little bit more difficult. Instead of throwing your dirty diaper in the garbage bin, a dirty cloth diaper comes home with you (which might not be so pleasant with a poopy diaper)! To make diaper changes on the go even easier, try using a portable diaper changing station like Bubzi Co.’s Fashionable Clutch Baby Changing Mat. It’s a complete game changer when it comes to diaper changes on the go, not to mention compact and cute to carry around!
How Many Diapers a Day?
Clearly diaper changes are a regular occurrence when you have a new baby, especially in the beginning. Before you stock up on diapers, here’s a general idea of how many you might need per day.
Newborn to 1 Month
Babies from birth to 1 month old have about six or more wet diapers a day, including 3-4 bowel movements per day. This can equate to an average of 10 dirty diapers a day for the first month.
1 Month and Up
After the 1 month mark, babies slow down somewhat in their dirty diapers, however still expect to change anywhere from 4-6 diapers a day.
As a new mom it probably seems as though there are countless decisions you need to make before the arrival of your new baby. And of course one of those decisions is what type of diaper you’re going to use for your newborn, because you know the minute that baby is born it will need one! So what’s it going to be? Cloth or disposable diapers? Both come with their own set of pros and cons so it’s important to weigh out each one before you decide. For some, it could also mean a mix of both disposable and cloth diapers. Ultimately, it’s a matter of finding what works best for you, your family and your lifestyle.
Photo credit: Bigstock
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