Monday, April 18, 2011

Leaky Pocket Diapers

Since my son was about 8 months old I've been slowly growing a collection of different one size pocket diapers (i.e. Bumgenius) to replace the previous sized prefolds and Grobaby 2 in 1 diapers I'd been using for him, as it became obvious he would not fit in those options for as long as I'd need to diaper him.

The more pockets I bought, the more I fell for them. I didn't think I'd be all for pre-prepping diapers after washing them, but as my son grew, became more mobile and squirmed like the dickens for every change, I quickly saw the benefits to having a diaper all ready to snap or velcro onto him. Pockets were my dream diapers, I found.

The issue with his diapers came a few months ago (my son is about 18 months old now), as the little guy's bladder grew and I found that any and all of his pockets would start to leak when he wore them. I didn't even consider it a design or manufacturing flaw, as I have a large variety of different pocket diapers. The leaking made me feel like he was a newborn again with the amount of changes he needed in a given day. Moreover, I never had leak issues with cloth diapers before, whereas I had had them a lot with the disposables we had used when he was first born and when we went on vacation. Overall the cloth diaper leak issues were bumming me out.

My solution to the leak problem, for a while, was to just add more inserts to the pockets. I'd stuff about 3 inserts into a pocket, but still a lot of times he'd leak, and I would find that the pocket wouldn't even be saturated all the way, especially not the back portion of the inserts, near his butt.

More recently I had a eureka moment when I realized that the leaks might not be so much about an overactive toddler bladder, but about how the inserts were being placed in the diapers. It didn't matter if I had 3 inserts in a diaper, once the front of the diaper was saturated (little boys tend to saturate the front of the diaper the most, whereas girls, so I have heard, saturate the middle), urine would start moving out of the diaper from the sides, and onto his clothes, instead of making its way to the rest of the inserts in the back of the diaper. It was so simple that I kinda feel naive for having not realized it sooner. All I had really needed to do was to fold one of the inserts in half and make sure it was positioned in the front of the pocket. This meant that the folded insert near the front would be able to do more absorbing. Of course I use a doubler in a lot of his pockets too, so that was also folded along with one insert, and added to the front of the diaper as well.

I have definitely cut down on the amount of leaks he was having, and have extended the amount of time he can remain in a diaper before needing to be changed by about a half hour more, on average. I think this is definitely worth trying first if you are having leak issues, especially before you go ahead and try stripping your diapers (which may not be necessary at all). It's worth a shot!

My question to other cloth diapering parents is, how do you handle a heavy wetting girl in pockets? Pretty much the same method, except perhaps putting the folded insert more towards the middle of the pocket? Or something else? I'd love to hear, especially for other readers who may have this leaking issue, but with little girls :D

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