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Types of Diapers or Incontinence Briefs

A diaper or brief choice can be made based on cost and preference. There are three basic types of diapering systems:

  • Conventional cloth diapers are washable and reusable. If you do not consider the time it takes to wash, dry, and fold cloth diapers, cloth diapers are the least expensive diapering system. Cloth diapers may be more comfortable if changed frequently before wetness allows them to become cold.
  • Disposable diapers with a normal cellulose core absorb moisture, are convenient, and may prevent some diaper rashes. These diapers help to prevent the spread of infection in a child care setting.
  • Superabsorbent disposable diapers or briefs that contain absorbent gelling material (AGM) prevent skin irritation by pulling moisture away from the skin. Diaper systems with AGM reduce wetness and prevent diaper rashes from other causes by keeping the skin pH normal. A child or adult with chronic or severe skin rashes in the diaper area may have fewer rashes wearing a superabsorbent disposable diaper.

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer H. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine
Current as of February 21, 2012

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: February 21, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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