8 Negative Impact of Disposable Diapers for the Environment

Diapers become a solution for busy parents today. The hectic of washing clothes almost ten times a day become more practical by simply putting on a diaper. Nowadays, there are many type of diapers that allow parents to have more choices based on their budget and perspectives.

Disposable diapers are cheaper and very easy to wear and be disposed of. However, there are various harmful chemicals in baby diapers that not many parents are aware of. Laboratory research confirms this suspicion.

There are numerous health issues can happen to babies and the environment due to the usage of disposable diapers. Yet, the public remains clueless about the information. Here are some negative impact of disposable diapers for the environment.

1. Dioxins

According to WHO based on a research in 2014, dioxin is a long term and a very persistent environmental pollutant. It causes a wide array of health problems from immunity and hormonal issue to skin problems and cancer. It is considered to be one of the most dangerous chemicals in everyday products.

In disposable diapers, the inner absorbent part is full of chemicals. When it goes to trashcans or dumpsters, the dioxins which accumulated in a human’s body could cause various illnesses.

2. Bad Smell

The right way to dispose of a disposable diaper is by flushing the feces and urine to the toilet first. Leaving human waste inside the diaper can cause infectious diseases. Moreover, it will leave extremely bad odor into the air. Wherever the diaper goes, the smell goes with it.

Remember, every household will take about 4-5 diaper changes a day. Think about the horrendous smell that it produce since this is one of the most harmful effects of chemical waste in our life.

3. Non-Degradable Waste

If you still remember what your biology teachers taught you at school about waste, then you are no stranger to degradable and non-degradable products. Disposable diapers are the third largest contributor from non-degradable waste.

It takes thousands of years for them to decompose if they are left in the open air and receive enough sunlight. If it is buried deep in the landfill, there will be no decomposition process whatsoever. Hence, using disposal diaper is one of the human activities affecting the life of ecosystems.

4. Water Contamination

If the impact of diapers waste in landfill is not enough, there is greater and vaster effect associated with this type of waste. Landfills with untreated human waste have a high potential for contaminating groundwater.

It does not happen in months, it takes many years before scientists can trace contamination source to human waste stored in diapers for thousand of years. And our children and grandchildren will pay the price years later.

5. Faecal Matter

Human is still far from solving this problem that comes from their body. A toss of disposable diapers to a trash can might add the quantity of raw faecal issues.

The American Academy of Pediatrics and The American Public Health Association begin to educate parents on this problem. Although, widespread knowledge is far from achieving its goal.

6. Affecting Plants Growth

There are many chemicals inside disposable diapers. One of them is oil dripping. As a raw material made from polythene which takes about 1 cup of crude oil to make just one disposable diaper, this chemical affects household chemical plant growth, particularly for the environment around landfills or dumpsites.

7. Destroying Forests

Layers in disposable diapers are made of fibres which are taken from trees. Naturally, using disposable diapers means destroying hundreds and thousands of trees. The impact of using something so little every day can cause greater problems. 

8. Starting a Fire

One of the main chemical substances found in a disposable diaper is sodium polyacrylate. Even the safest and the most eco-friendly diaper has this kind of chemical substance.

Sodium polyacrylate is what household items can you use to make a fire. Imagine throwing some disposable diapers containing sodium polyacrylate to a bin and burning your trash. You could possibly cause a massive fire.

There is a lot of negative impact of disposable diapers for the environment. Sooner or later, it also affects human health and other issues. Finding the right disposal of household chemicals near me hazardous waste can be tricky.

Some better way to solve it changing disposable diapers to clothes diapers which force the parent to clean their human waste first. Changing diaper choices also better follow with the mindset of making the environment cleaner, even means more hassle in daily life.