Diaper DebateCloth or Disposables

By: Anastasia Phocas

Originally, “diaper" was referred to the type of material rather than the usage. Linen was the original diaper cloth. Shakespeare wrote “"Another bear the ewer, the third a diaper" in The Taming of the Shrew. In US, diapers are often referred to as "pampers" from the popular brand.

Diapers are made with absorbent layers of disposable materials, terry toweling fabric or cloth. The choice to use either disposable diapers or cloth is controversial. Most attribute health, convenience emphasized by the makers of commercial diapers whereas the cloth diapers are cheaper and have less impact on the environment.

Cloth diapers are reusable, place less stress on landfills and are washable. Children wearing cloth diapers tend to get toilet trained earlier, since the cloth retains moisture, permitting the child to feel when it is dirty and wet causing them to associate the feeling with elimination. Eco friendly and alternative materials, which are grown without any use of pesticides, such as unbleached hemp and organic cotton are also used in some niche market diapers. For more info visit www.diapercity.info

In recent years, cloth diapers have become more user friendly, with Velcro or snaps and pre-formed. The pocket or stuffable diapers are also getting popular. These diapers come with an outer shell sewn on three sides to a stay-dry liner. In many cities, there are cloth-diapering services, which deliver clean diapers and pick up soiled ones.

Disposable diapers are normally made of a waterproof exterior which resembles cloth in appearance, an inside layer which is actually a moisture-wick and an inner core to absorb the moisture (mostly dried hydrogel). The cloth diaper market has been taken over by the disposable diapers.

Unintentional and intentional chemicals are laced up in disposable diapers to speed up the absorption process. Even though the system enables to keep the skin dry, there is a potential risk of skin irritation suffered by the baby.

The ease of simply throwing away a soiled diaper is the inherent convenient factor for the popularity of disposable diapers whereas the cloth diapers leads to the irritating chore of washing it.

One of the recent developments is a reusable, flushable hybrid system, which contains an outer pant – quite fashionable – and an inner part, which absorbs the moisture. The inner part can be flushed or disposed of easily and the outer part is reused after washing.

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