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Cloth Diaper Yeast

  • Post category:Butt Care

My grandson has been cloth diapered for a very long time, pretty much all of his life. My daughter thought she was one of the lucky few who escaped it: the dreaded cloth diaper yeast problems. She is so methodical with his cloth diapers and is attuned to the baby’s delicate skin.

Well, last week, as she was getting him ready for bed, she saw it. Little red, irritated bumps everywhere! She knew immediately what those evil little bumps meant: Yeast. Dang, it.  She texted her best friend Margie (our neighbor and fellow CD-obsessed momma). Even though she technically knew how to handle yeast, up until this point, she felt she needed the extra support.

My daughter also called the pediatrician for good measure. The Pediatrician recommended Lotrimin, and Margie suggested a mix of ten drops of Grapefruit Seed Extract mixed with water in a 4oz spray bottle. She recommended spraying it on the baby’s bottom with every single diaper change. She also recommended lots of air drying time, and of course, disposable diapers. All of our cloth needed to be disinfected (see recipe for disinfecting yeasty cloth diapers at the end of the post!). I had hubby run out and buy a pack of sposies, and so started our journey.

When we woke up the following day, his bum looked much, much better. What a relief! We alternated between using the Lotramin and the GSE. Unfortunately, it took a few days for the bumps to disappear. We thought we were out of the woods and started cloth diapering him again. Within a day, the bumps were back. This time we took him to the Ped’s office. She confirmed it. His yeast rash had not gone away wholly. Tricky little beast.

She prescribed some medicine which we used, and within a week, the bumps were still there, no change. So we started getting aggressive. We used the prescription, the GSE, and we continued to use the Lotrimin sporadically, and he was beginning to look better-except for one little spot, right where his legs met his torso. It was severely irritated, but it didn’t look like yeast. It turns out he has an allergy to sposies.

Remember I said he had been cloth diapered pretty much all of his life? Well, this has been the longest he had ever been exposed to disposable diapers, and let’s say his skin didn’t react very well to it. So now we have two problems: yeast and allergic reaction. So, we again disinfected all of our cloth diapers and decided not to wear disposables anymore.

This meant that we had to disinfect our cloth diapers with every single wash, so about every 2-3 days. We also had to protect the diapers from all of the medicine, cream, and extract. So we used fleece liners to create a barrier between the diapers and all of the stuff going on with the baby.

Fortunately, the process worked well for us. His irritation to the disposables cleared up within a day of using the cloth. He still had yeast which we continued to treat. Eventually, that went away too! Battling the Yeast Beast took a total of 3 weeks for us, but I am glad to say that his skin is back to normal and healthy on all fronts! Have you ever battled with yeast? 

How to Disinfect Yeasty Cloth Diapers (for regular washing machines):

  • Washcloth diapers if they are soiled. Make sure you start this process with clean diapers.
  • Wash the diapers in hot water with detergent and 30 drops of grapefruit seed extract (GSE) along with ten drops of tea tree oil.
  • While the water is filling up on your washing machine, mix in a pot of boiling water into the laundry.
  • Do an extra cold rinse (in addition to the rinse at the end of a wash cycle).
  • Dry in the dryer on low heat. Better yet, dry in direct sunlight, which also helps to eliminate yeast.

Spray Bottle Mix 

  • 4oz spray bottle.
  • 4oz of water
  • Ten drops of grapefruit seed extract (GSE).
  • Spray on the affected area with every diaper change.

*Please note we are NOT doctors, and this is simply a guideline of what has worked in our home. Please consult your pediatrician if you have any health-related questions!