Sunday, May 29, 2011

A Green Bum

  Ahren has never been dry at night. Well, occasionally he will have a dry night, but maybe once every couple of weeks. Normally he is soaked by morning. We do all the things you should do to help a child stay dry at night. Limit fluids, have him go last thing before crawling in bed, etc. It seems to have something to do with his muscle/neuro issue and is beyond his control. The normal pullups and diapers do not come big enough to fit him. He is 50 pounds and has a very round, full booty. The older kids style night time pants are expensive, still leak, and end up living perpetually in a landfill somewhere.

  So I set out on a mission to find a cloth alternative to this dilemma. I searched and searched and was having zero luck finding a cloth diapering system for a child this big. I found tons of awesome systems for smaller kids. Cute little diaper covers, all in one systems, pocket systems, pre-folds, pads, liners, but nothing in a size that would work.

  Then one day I found a website called They had everything to do with cloth diapering and voila! They had XX-large training pant covers. I got two kinds, Scott Potty and Bummi Covers. Both are a waterproof cloth that is not like the old-fashioned plastic pants, but much softer. They have soft cloth around the elasticized waist and leg opening. The best part is they are big enough that he will be able to use them for at least another 2 years.

  So that solved the outside, but what about the inside? One regular cloth diaper is not nearly enough to soak up the volume of pee this boy can put out. I got a dozen cloth diapers and some really cool fasteners called snappi's and then I began to experiment.

  First night I used one cloth diaper as the outer layer with a folded cloth diaper in the front target area. Result: soaked sheets and an unhappy boy.

  Second night I tried the same thing but I stuck a large thin feminine pad in between the two diapers. Results: less wet bed but still wet and an unhappy boy.

  Third night, same two diapers but an additional diaper folded and placed front to back. Ahren hated this because it was too bulky between his legs. So I added a twist to the third diaper at the center of the crotch to make it narrower and he tolerated it, barely. Results: small wet spot on the bed.

  At that point I was ready to try anything. I experimented with a chamois-type towel in the front but it was too bulky. I tried various other absorbent items and methods of folding/wrapping/twisting the diapers, but I only succeeded in making him look like the stay puff marshmallow man.

  For now I am going with the 2 diaper method and then adding either the third diaper or a feminine pad. I am getting better at getting them positioned and fastened the right way and we have gone several night with no leaks. I feel bad about using the fem pads since they also go into the landfill, but at least they are much smaller. In the meantime I continue to experiment. I have an idea on how to sew a pad using the diapers and a chamois material for extra absorbency. Maybe I should order a Sham-Wow???? I bet they never thought of that use for their late night marketing!


Stacie said...

My friend uses a diaper and then puts the smallest depend (adult diaper) over it. It has worked great for her son and depends hold a lot of liquid.

Anonymous said...

I'm a cloth diaper(er). Two suggestions, try a fitted diaper (look around on for someone willing to make custom sizes) that is made of bamboo...super soft and absorbant. Second try hemp, this stuff is like magic. Absorbs tons (I use joey bunz in my girls diapers). And last, make sure you don't put microfiber next to skin, it causes nasty rashes as it sucks the moisture from the skin.

Wendy said...

Thank you so much for the suggestions! Hemp, bamboo and depends. never even crossed my mind!

Kim said...

If you get to wanting to make something, let me know. Our sewing group made diapers for the kids in Haiti and I have some tips on sewing diapers - it's pretty easy and I bet we could modify for Ahren's size and quantity of liquid. :)

Anonymous said...

Ok, thinking some more about this. When my son was three-ish (granted, smaller than Ahren) this is what I did (he could pee through anything overnight...I used an overnight diaper with two doublers and a large overnight pullup and he'd pee through the entire thing), I used a Mother-ease Toddler Ease diaper (says it goes up to 45 lbs, but this is a BIG diaper) in bamboo with a doubler, and then a prefold inside (this makes it incredibly bulky) and then a wool soaker on top. I used an aristocrats soaker (super, super soft, like a nice (non-wool) sweater), and they have a child size. Wool is FANTASTIC as preventing leaks. It breathes, and it is awesome for overnight. I was a huge doubter about it, but it was the only thing that keep B dry overnight. It does require a bit more care than a cover, but seriously, it is worth every penny. If you want more info, let me know, I'll leave my email address if you'll delete it, and we can chat.

Wendy said...

Anonymous, that would be great. I had thought about wool and could knit pads, but wasn't sure if they would work. Ahren can also pee through anything. I was using a size 6 diaper, with fem pad inside and a waterproof cover and it still leaked. Here's my e-mail and you can write to me directly

And if any of you out there are a psycho stalker, just know that I think of that as a compliment. Hee!

Anonymous said...

Email sent :)