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Cloth Diapering and Family Gatherings
December 23, 2016 9:00 am | by

Our midwives not only deliver babies, but get to talk with new mothers about a lot of the challenges facing them in their transition into parenthood. It’s that time of year again: traveling and meeting up with family for the holidays. Traveling with kids is challenging enough, but if you cloth diaper – especially if you’re fairly new to it – it can be downright intimidating. You may pray that your baby doesn’t need a diaper change when you’re out and about. It’s normal to be nervous about the mechanics of cloth diapering outside of the house, but like anything else, practice makes perfect.

Cloth Diapering Away From Home

There’s no doubt about it– there are differences between cloth diapers and disposables when traveling. Cloth tends to be bulkier than ‘sposies, which means they take up extra room in your diaper bag, overnight bag, and car. Using either prefolds and covers or hybrids can help minimize the amount of cloth you need to bring, especially if you’ll be able to do laundry while traveling. (Although for convenience, all-in-ones like the bumGenuis Freetime take the cake, in our opinion). Check ahead of time whether you’ll have access to a laundry facility, and bring along plenty of wet bags.

While cloth diapers are good for the environment – and your wallet – you might run into family who just “can’t understand” why you’re cloth diapering, when disposables are “so much easier.” Chances are, they’re thinking that today’s cloth diapers are similar to what they dealt with decades ago. If you’re anticipating some push-back about your family’s decision to cloth diaper, take a deep breath and come up with ready-to-go explanations about why it works for you. Chances are, once they see you in action with the cloth diapers (and see your cute fluffbutts), their preconceived notions of it will fall away.

Must-Haves for Cloth Diapering On the Go

  • Wet Bags – You’ll need a few of these to store dirty diapers, liners, wipes, and so forth. If your little one has a blowout on the road, just throw the soiled outfit in a wet bag, along with the diaper, and you’re good to go. You can also use these to store breast pump accessories and parts, snacks, toys/games, books – the possibilities are endless.
  • Extra clothes – Always, always pack more than you think you’ll need because it’s when you’re short that an unexpected accident will occur.
  • Inserts or Liners – If you use pocket diapers, inserts are needed for absorbency. Even if you use AIOs, you can always use an insert as a doubler on a long car ride, for a family gathering where you don’t want to chance a leak, or overnight while traveling. Liners help provide a feeling of dryness, and if you use disposable liners, just throw them away during a diaper change.
  • Detergent – Don’t forget to pack some of your preferred detergent, as well as a measuring scoop. Not all detergents are friendly to cloth diapers, and you don’t want to have to buy a big box that you’ll have to leave behind.
  • Backup – Even if you plan to cloth diaper while traveling and with family, it never hurts to have some disposable diapers on hand. You never know if something might come up and you can’t wash the diapers, or you have a particularly rough patch and go through the diapers faster than expected, or simply need a break for yourself. Remember, cloth diapering doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing thing. This should be enjoyable.

What things helped you when traveling while cloth diapering? Read more pregnancy, newborn care, and motherhood articles from Baby+Company or email if you have questions for the midwives.

About the Author

Baby+Company is a team of women's health care professionals dedicated to revolutionizing maternity care nationwide. Our birth centers are staffed with Certified Nurse-Midwives and work in collaboration with reputable hospitals and doctors. Our evidence-based care is highly personalized, focusing on each individual woman's needs and desires for her own health and family. We currently operate birth centers in Colorado, North Carolina, and Tennessee with plans to expand our services nationwide in the coming months.


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