The Diaper Debate: Cloth Vs. Disposable

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New parents often debate the merits of cloth diapers over disposable. Which are better for your baby – and the environment? Learn more here….

Few environmental issues are as much debated as the cloth vs. disposable diaper question. Obviously, you would assume that cloth diapers are much better for the environment, but what about for your baby? Are there health benefits of one over the other? Are there toxic chemicals in disposable diapers that you should be concerned about? And of course we can’t forget the convenience issue. Disposables can obviously seem more convenient – especially when traveling.

This helpful article discusses the pros and cons of both cloth and disposable diapers, to help you make an informed decision.

Environmental Issues

Disposable diapers are rather infamous for the tremendous waste that ends up in landfills and takes seemingly forever to degrade. They also require a lot of raw materials for their production.

The only environmental impacts from cloth diapers appear to be the use of a great deal of water and electricity for their continuous washing and drying.

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Health Risks

One matter of some concern is the chemicals that are used in disposable diapers. In particular, the frequent use of chlorine to bleach the disposable diapers to a more appealing whiteness. The use of chlorine causes the creation of a toxic substance called dioxin. Dioxins are considered highly toxic and highly carcinogenic chemicals by the EPA.

The World Health Organization (WHO) states that dioxin exposure can lead to altered liver function and skin reactions. They also say it can cause impairment to the nervous system, endocrine system, immune system, and reproductive function.

Another chemical which raises cause for concern in disposable diapers is sodium polyacrylate, which supplies the absorbent component of the diaper…. It is believed to be associated with respiratory problems and skin irritation….

Another toxic chemical in disposable diapers is tributyl-tin (TBT)…. TBT does not degrade; therefore, it remains in the environment.

When it comes to cloth diapers, the primary health concern are rashes. Sometimes a baby’s skin can develop an allergic reaction rashes from colored dyes in diapers. These rashes can be easily avoided by changing to dye-free diapers.

Diaper Rash

A big lingering concern in most parent’s minds is that cloth diapers may promote diaper rash more than disposables. Diaper rash can be brought on by many things including friction, urine, moisture, feces, and yeast. While it may be true that disposable diapers draw away much of the moisture, cloth diapers just require more frequent changes to make them equally effective.
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Check out the full article at AlternativeDaily.com….

 

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