Cloth diapers in the hospital? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 19 Old 05-30-2009, 04:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We're expecting our first and planning to cloth diaper. Do most people who cloth diaper bring the cloth diapers to the hospital for the first few days, or just use the hospital disposables while you are there? I'm a little concerned about managing a bunch of dirty diapers to take home with us (we are far enough from the hospital that DH running home to wash a few won't be an option) and getting the hang of the diapers in addition to everything else while being in an unfamiliar place. Would we be better off just waiting on CDing until we are home? If you reccomend starting right off with cloth, any tips on making it more manageable?

Thanks,
Sarah
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#2 of 19 Old 05-30-2009, 05:07 PM
 
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I would recommend just using the hospital's disposables, for a few reasons:

1. The first few days the baby is passing meconium instead of "regular" poo. Meconium is dark in color and quite sticky. I think it would be a pain to wash out of cloth diapers, and would probably stain them. We waited until our little one's poo had transitioned to the regular yellow bf poo before starting with cloth.

2. Cloth diapering a brand new baby is a little tricky because they're so tiny and still have their umbilical stump. You don't need one more thing to learn or worry about while at the hospital.

3. The washing situation, as you mentioned, would be a hassle.

4. Your baby might be in the nursery a little bit, and the nurses might change his/her diaper there once or twice. I'm not sure what they'd do with the cloth diaper, and they'd just put a disposable on him/her anyway. (Note: babies generally "room in" with you, but our little one did go the nursery for a couple of hours twice while we were at the hospital...once to go under the warmer, and once to get his hearing evaluated, have the blood drawn from his heel, do a jaundice test, etc.).

I'd wait until you're home and have settled in for a few days...they'll send you home from the hospital with some disposables.
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#3 of 19 Old 05-30-2009, 05:48 PM
 
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Congrats and I hope everything goes well!

We weren't sure what we were going to do as far as cloth diapering in the hospital either. We also purchased 7th Gen sposies to use in the hospital because I don't like the pampers they provide (I don't like the fragrance/bleach, etc). And we wanted to do cloth but weren't sure if we'd be able to or not. But we took some prefolds and covers with anyhow just in case!

My wonderful husband used some of them - I was sort of stuck in bed when we had our son, but he varied between using the sposies and the cloth. It wasn't that many, but we were excited we used some there.

And we did it in a way where we didn't stress about whether we were going to use them or not. We had some sposies on hand, but really we mostly used cloth at the beginning w/ the option to use sposie and continue to use cloth 98% of the time. And I do think it made it easier to use cloth at first knowing that we didn't have this expectation that we had to - KWIM? We also have a toddler in cloth still so we knew at first we wanted to step into it slowly because of the vast amounts of laundry we would have.

Hope this helps!

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#4 of 19 Old 05-30-2009, 05:56 PM
 
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We could probably manage cloth at the hospital, but we've always used their disposables. I totally agree about waiting until the meconium is done, and that with a first baby you'll have enough to worry about.

If you wanted, you could bring some of your diapers to hospital to try out. I have known people to use cloth at the hospital, but there's no shame in using the disposables they provide. They told us that the ones in our room would just go in the garbage if we didn't use them.

Julie - Mom to Elizabeth (Libby) age 6, Penelope (Penny) age 5, Elliott age 29 months, and Oscar who is 1 year old!
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#5 of 19 Old 05-30-2009, 09:22 PM
 
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the meconium was not a big deal with me because i just put a liner in the diaper and threw it away. i cut up a old towel worked amazing.
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#6 of 19 Old 05-31-2009, 01:46 PM
 
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we ended up just using the hospital sposies. i was totally planning to be all about using cloth there, but i was so into bonding with dd i honestly sort of forgot about them. then i got home and tried them, and they didn't fit her yet anyway. i think we really started using them about the end of her first week.

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#7 of 19 Old 05-31-2009, 05:30 PM
 
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We didn't have any problems getting merconium out of our diapers and we did not use any kind of liner. No problems with staining...

I ended up using the hospital diapers while we were there because I didn't want to deal with bringing dirty diapers home. It would not have been a problem had I chosen to use them though. We did all of the diaper changes and baby never left me. I went with her to the hearing test. We left the hospital less then 24 hours after her birth and she was in cloth as soon as we got home. I was so happy to have her out of those disposables and wished I would have just done the cloth at the hospital after all.

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#8 of 19 Old 06-01-2009, 12:50 AM
 
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I would say go with the flow. You can bring them along and then opt out if you'd like! We used disposables for the first 10 months with DS1, until the umbilical cord fell off with DD, and in the hospital for DS2. I only had small fuzzi bunz with DD and they covered her umbilical cord, making it soggy, which made me uncomfortable. So we stuck to disposable. For DS2 we had small fitteds and covers that didn't cover his umbilical cord, so we used those. But I agree with pp, there is a learning curve and you should give yourself permission to do what feels manageable.

Have fun!
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#9 of 19 Old 06-01-2009, 09:41 AM
 
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We brought cloth to the hospital. It wasn't a big deal. But, using the hospital disposables wouldn't have been a big deal either. It just depends on how strongly you feel about it.

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#10 of 19 Old 06-01-2009, 02:41 PM
 
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Sometimes the hospital will have cloth diapers for you to use too, you just have to ask. Then, you're baby is in cloth, and they do the laundry...best of both worlds.
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#11 of 19 Old 06-05-2009, 02:41 AM
 
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My first baby was born at the U of Washington hospital and all they had available was cloth! It was great. They did all the laundry, I didn't have to worry about anything. I would definitely ask if it is an option. If it is not, I would wait till you get home. It just doesn't seem worth it to tote a bag of soiled diapers home to launder them. You'll have enough to worry about.
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#12 of 19 Old 06-05-2009, 12:48 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K-Mom3 View Post
My first baby was born at the U of Washington hospital and all they had available was cloth! It was great. They did all the laundry, I didn't have to worry about anything. I would definitely ask if it is an option. If it is not, I would wait till you get home. It just doesn't seem worth it to tote a bag of soiled diapers home to launder them. You'll have enough to worry about.
that is awesome! i had dd2 at overlake in bellevue, and they had prefolds out to use as spit rags.. i didn't even think to ask if they had cding as an option while we were staying there. i'll have to remember to ask next time.

Leah- mama to Audrey born 12/29/03 and Gwyneth born 4/1/2009! Soon to be TTC #3!
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#13 of 19 Old 06-05-2009, 04:48 PM
 
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Now that you mention it, my hospital had some prefolds around for us to use as spit-rags also. Maybe we could have CD'd at the hospital...It never even occurred to me to ask.
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#14 of 19 Old 06-05-2009, 04:54 PM
 
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When I had my first in the hospital, they told me they would throw away the disposables if we didn't take them. If that's the case for your hospital too, you might as well use them, and save half a load of laundry.

I didn't find meconium stained at all, so don't let that stop you.

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#15 of 19 Old 06-05-2009, 08:15 PM
 
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We did the hospital pampers that they gave us. I wish we had brought the cloth because on the second day of using them (they day we left) her bum broke out in a nasty horrible rash. DH immediately got rid of the sposies and forbade them in our home (that got him on the cloth wagon fast ). Anywho, I will defiantly deal with the trouble of the cloth in the hospital from now on.

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#16 of 19 Old 06-05-2009, 09:05 PM
 
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Interesting.
The hospitals here use cloth.
(I ended up using some diapers for me when I ran out of the big pads they gave me actually)!
So we found the cloth easy (actually my husband did all the changes while I rested for that 5 days in hospital). They even had those big safety pins. I think they were unbleached cotton ones but quite small, perfect for newborns.

That said, For me personally, I couldn't move much so there was no chance of me changing any diapers let alone figuring out the cloth one at the beginning.

However, if all they have is disposable ones and you're not sure of the cloth then there are some options like the unbleached 7th generation? ones, or even a g-diaper one (those your can flush or they biodegrade but I don't know how those ones would work with the stump: we used those at the beginning months a few times going out when the stump fell off). Maybe the 7th generation ones have newborn sizes?

At hospital , we folded the cloth one over so it wouldn't hit the cord stump.
So, whatever feels best for you. If you're worried about not being able to wash them right away then go for the gentler alternatives of non-bleach ones or biodegradable ones.
We did use disposables first few weeks: baby ended up with a horrible rash. The dr. said it was from using the brand we used! (non-bleach ones, etc.) but I am not so sure. Baby gets a rash if she is wet for 1 second! and the rash was controlled using cloth diapers.
Good luck

PS: Do all your hospitals use disposables? Isn't that expensive for them? Just curious!
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#17 of 19 Old 06-05-2009, 09:40 PM
 
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We used disposables (7th generation and the left-over Pampers from the hospital) for the first week, and our little one got a yeast spot (big whitish patch) from being in those plastic-y diapers! A dab of anti-fungal cleared it right up, and we switched to cloth that day. No problems since.
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#18 of 19 Old 06-06-2009, 01:55 AM
 
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Most hospitals charge automatically for the dipes in your room, but if you tell the nurse to take them (un-opened) and remove the charge from your bill they can. Otherwise if the package is un-opened they should be able to re-stock them vs. throwing them away. (hospital waste policies drive me nuts)

Seventh Generation does make a newborn sized dipe with the umbilical cut-out at the top, they also make a preemie size (I've seen them at BRU and Amazon)

We used 'sposies with both girls the first couple of weeks because they were both too small for the cloth we had (Kissaluvs fitteds/Fuzzi Bunz and infant prefolds).

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#19 of 19 Old 06-07-2009, 06:55 PM
 
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I brought small Fuzzi Bunz to the hospital for DD. Granted, I signed myself out and we were there just a little over 12 hours after she was born. If we were going to be there for days I might have felt differently. For me, I'm proud to say that my DD has never worn a single disposable. In reality, it just isn't that big a deal. I was important to me, and the nurses all thought they were awesome and I gave at least 3 or 4 cloth lessons while we were there.

That said, for your first baby you are going to have lots to worry about and cloth diapers probably aren't the most important. I was already using cloth on my DS when DD was born, so I didn't have to worry about the learning curve aspect. Do what you want and ENJOY those first few days no matter what diapers you use!!!

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