How To Choose The Right Nappy For Your Baby
When it comes to choosing a nappy for your baby, your choices are disposable or cloth (washable). While cloth nappies offer plenty of advantages – such as cost (after the initial outlay), waste and eco-friendliness – they are more labour intensive. Considering that, on average, in the first weeks of your baby's life you'll have to change between 8-14 nappies every 24 hours, you may initially find disposables more appealing.
When it comes to picking which brand or type of nappy to buy for your baby, you may want to consider the following:
1. Your baby's weight
Disposables start at 2.5kg/4lb for newborns and go up to 25kg/55lb for toddlers. You'll need to take some newborn disposable nappies to the hospital with you (these make allowance for the umbilical cord) but don't buy too many just yet as your baby might grow out of them more quickly than you expect. You can also get tiny disposables for premature babies.
2. Time of day
There are disposable nappies specifically for night-time, which are usually more absorbent. During the day you'll be checking your baby's nappy at regular intervals and changing him when necessary. At night, your baby may stay in a wet nappy for several hours, and a more absorbent one will help prevent nappy rash.
3. Your baby's sex
There are nappies available which are more absorbent at the front for boys and at the centre for girls.
4. Your baby's shape
Different brands of nappy are cut differently and you'll probably have to try a few brands to see which one suits your baby's shape best. Although you may want to stock up before your baby is born to help spread the cost and get prepared, it's probably best not to buy in bulk just yet until you've found the best fit for your baby.
Which Nappies are the Favourite?
Well, we here at eumom did a survey and our moms love Pampers! They dominate the Irish market with 44% of eumom members citing it as their top choice. Huggies follows with 13% and Tesco My Baby is favoured by 6%. It is vital that you change your baby’s nappy regularly as urine, combined with the bacteria in faeces, can irritate the skin and lead to nappy rash. If your baby does get nappy rash, you may find a nappy cream helps. The favourite nappy cream among eumom members is Sudocrem, which is used exclusively by 34% of members. Bepanthen follows with 26%, and Mama Mio and Baby Seba Medo were each chosen by 2% of members.
Reusable nappies are kinder to the environment and are more economical. Some parents also claim that using cloth nappies lessens the risk of babies suffering from nappy rash. However. if you choose to use cloth nappies, you may still find that disposables are more useful for travelling or in emergencies. Approximately 600,000 nappies are used every day in Ireland, and disposable nappies take hundreds of years to break down. This has a serious impact on the environment, therefore using reusable nappies can really reduce your carbon footprint.
Despite the fact that cloth nappies do involve a bit more work than disposables, they are becoming increasingly popular. Reusable nappies also save you money – according to Organico.ie, depending on when you begin using them, you save about 80% of the cost of disposables and it is estimated that you come out between €300 and €500 better off.
It is essential that cloth nappies are pre-treated before being used on a baby. Pre-treat by washing them in the washing machine 4-6 times. This strips them of the oil present from cotton so that they will absorb liquid. Do not add detergent to the wash, but if you wish you could add tea-tree oil or lavender oil.