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Cloth Diapers at the Hospital?

Yes, yes and yes.  It’s so easy!

When our newest baby girl was baking, I began putting together a diaper stash for her.  I couldn’t wait to use my itty bitty fluff.  It was so tiny and cute, and more importantly, it would keep harmful chemicals off of my baby and out of the landfills.  I never gave a second thought to using cloth at the hospital.

Fast forward a few months and there I was in labor.  My bags had been packed for a month and included were a whole host of cloth diapers.  Unsure of what I might need, I packed several fitteds, prefolds, covers and wool.  I was quite excited not just to use cloth on my baby, but to educate while doing so.  I knew that others would see them and it would help open some minds without having to say a word, unless asked of course.

Our baby girl arrived and I soon slipped her into her very first cloth diaper, that I made for her.  I didn’t think that the cloth would be a problem with the nurses, and it wasn’t.  I never dreamed that they would love it so much!  I was so pleasantly surprised by the staff.  I always am though.  (I had a two week stay with them following the premature birth of our older daughter… these ladies are phenomenal!)  They loved the diapers and I was so happy to have such a positive and open response.  In fact, I had several nurses come to my room at different times during my stay to see the cloth diapers.  It was great to share and great to see them all again.

So I figure if you’re reading this you’d like to know a big about the logistics of it all.  How to use cloth in the hospital, what you’ll need, etc.

The first things you’re going to need are your diapers and a wet bag.  I chose to bring a pail liner.  I hung it on a hook in the bathroom to keep it out of my way, but still at easy access.  As for the diapers.  I ended up using fitteds exclusively.  You’ll be monitoring wet and dirty diapers, so these were perfect in my opinion.  I didn’t even use a cover during my stay.  Since newborns hardly pee during those first few days, it just wasn’t needed.  I would still recommend bringing a cover, just in case.  The amount of diapers to bring will depend on your stay.  I was there for two days and maybe used 20 diapers.  They are tiny and take up very little room.

Here you can see my baby girl with a newborn Nanipoo on.  I don’t believe these are still being made.  They are my absolute favorite newborn diaper though.  Loved the fit.  They fit well from the start and lasted a a very long time too!

The biggest concern I see about using cloth at the hospital is those first few new baby poos.  The meconium is thick and sticky, much like tar.  I can tell you from experience that it really is no big deal and it will not ruin your diapers.  When we had these poopy diapers I simply rinsed the diaper off with some water into the toilet and tossed it into my wet bag.  It was simple and easy.  I did not rinse one solid white diaper and it ended up with a smidge of staining that I sunned out when I got a chance.

The other concern that I see is about just having too much to do and not wanting to come home to laundry.  Well, yes, you will have to wash them.  But no, you likely won’t need to wash them the moment you come home.  You will likely have more than enough diapers to get you through a day or two more at least.  I think I was able to get by for a couple of days before needing to do a load of laundry.  She just peed so very little those first few days.  It was pretty handy when it came to the whole laundry thing.  It’s also very easy if you want to toss them in the wash.  It takes a few minutes, at best.  You’ll just add your detergent, dump in your diapers and go.  That’s it.

Using cloth at the hospital really is very easy and I think it sends a good message.  Speaking of a message, there is a neat page on Facebook that I came across.  For those who might be interested, there is a group all about trying to get cloth back into hospitals🙂

If you are really against using cloth at the hospital, you can still do it with less chemicals by choosing a safer disposable.  You might try Seventh Generation, Nature Babycare, Earth’s Best or Tushies.

Did you use cloth in the hospital?  I’d love to hear your experiences.

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