Friday, September 23, 2011

Disposable Diaper Alternatives

Having kids can be pricey.  One of the pricier aspects of having kids is diapering.  The average child can easily end up using 6,000 to 10,000 diapers before potty training and all that, along with your hard earned money, just ends up in a landfill.  There are a lot of great alternative to disposable diapers though.

Cloth Diapers  Cloth diapers are nothing like they used to be.  Companies like FuzziBunz, BabyKicks and Bummis make diapers that look like disposable diapers, but are in fact cloth and come in many colors.  On top of that there are many different types of cloth diapers you can go with.  The initial cost of a cloth diaper may seem pretty pricey at $16 or more per diaper, but these are diapers that you'll never have to throw away, drastically driving down diapering costs.  You buy them once and depending how long before you decide to potty-train, you may not have to buy new diapers again.  Diapers are washed just like normal laundry (we recommend adding a little vinegar to the wash and occasionally doing a bleaching here and there) and if you just don't have time for laundry at all there are diaper services here in New York.  Another great benefit of cloth diapering is kids that potty-train sooner than those that use disposables.

Hybrid Diapers  If cloth seems like too much of a big step, you can always go with hybrid diapers.  These are generally made up of reusable outer shells, that also come in many great colors, and disposable inserts.  Many hybrid diaper makers make their inserts flushable, upping the convenience even more.  And some even offer washable inserts.  Check out companies like gDiapers or GroVia.

Elimination Communication  EC is a more old-fashioned way to go and is still used all over parts of Asia, Africa and South America.  Also known as diaper free or diaper-less training, EC takes a little more work since the parent and/or caregiver will have to learn the signs of when the child will need to go.  Essentially, elimination communication is just very early potty-training.  EC is commonly used in many parts of the world where diapering is not an option for most parents.  Even though it can be tough to do in the modern Western world, it is making a comeback with families on this side of the hemisphere.

You don't have to pick only one over the other.  A parent can easily start out with hybrids, move to cloth and then eventually EC or use a combination of EC and cloth diapering.  It is all about what is best for your family.  There are many resources out there to help you make the best choice for your child and your family.

Kelly's Closet carries both hybrid and cloth diapers that you can even purchase in bulk to lower the cost.  They also frequently have great sales and advice for parents new to cloth diapering.
All About Cloth Diapers is a blog dedicated to giving advice and recommendations for cloth diapering.
Diaper Free Baby is a network of free support groups that promote elimination communication.
Natural Baby World has advice on elimination communication.
New York Family Guide has a list of recommended diaper services in the New York area.
Yelp has reviews and ratings of different diaper services in the New York area.

And be sure to check out this article at Ecopreneurist about a diaper recycling facility that recently opened in the United Kingdom.

Above photo care of Lifehacker.

No comments:

Post a Comment