Friday, August 10, 2012

Swim Diapers

I don't understand swim diapers.  I don't get how they work.

When I first bought them, it was because I had to.  Because all pools and splash pads said "thou shalt not have thy child in or near me without a swim diaper upon her."  And I put it on her, and said "Wow, there's no way that's going to work."  And then while she was sitting on my lap before entering the pool, she peed, it and it got all over me.

I related this story to a fellow mother at a lunch date, and she said "why, they've always worked for me!  Maybe the size was wrong?"  Though of course swim diapers are essentially one size.  Then she thought about it for a while, called me back, and said that she used the expensive cloth swim diapers, so maybe that was the trouble.  Somehow I didn't think so.

I mean, cloth or mysterious plastic substance, they both absorb liquid, yes?   I have witnessed this--they don't always leak.  But there's no magical chemical or automaton sitting in that diaper going "chlorine, chlorine, water, water, chlorine, PEE!  Pee alert!  Time to absorb, boys!"  The diaper is observing all fluids in comes into contact with, and since it cannot possibly hold an entire pool's worth of water, it must operate on some kind of catch-and-release principle.  By which I mean, the diaper is letting my kid pee in the pool.

Are they mere poop-receptacles, so that the poop doesn't go floating around in the pool, or smear itself into the bathing suit?  Having experienced this on a particularly laissez-faire, swim-diapers-are-a-crock day, I would never claim that a poop-receptacle is not extremely valuable.  Though as previously discussed, the water in the pool definitely comes in contact with the poop, and is thereby contaminated, so what, really, is the point there?

Are they just to make us all feel a little bit better, so we can let our children go in pools and have something to point to and say "See?  Totally fine.  There is absolutely no way my not-yet-potty-trained child can pee or poop in your pool!  She's wearing a diaper!"


Does anybody else spend their time thinking about these things?

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

ok... not to gross you out...

but my 2 1/2 year old son did poop in the pool. and we didn't know he did, until after we took the swimmy diaper off. All that was left in the diaper was a few seeds/solids.

I think the swimmy diapers are merely a way to keep poop in place, and not to absorb pee (which they most certainly do not do). But then, the whole holding the poop in place didn't work (see paragraph one)

I don't know what to tell you but my experience is the same!

--Vanessa

Nikki Van De Car said...

No, that's exactly what I thought would happen! It's a Huggies Conspiracy! But at least this way it's sort of secret and we don't get kicked out of the pool....

Cecilia said...

I tried the swim diapers last summer with my 1 year-old. EXACTLY the same amount of thought put into the engineering of the diaper and the level of success it could offer. Fortunately we were at the beach, so if there had been an accident - alas there was not - - ok maybe some pee - it would have gone unnoticed.
I did once play with my son in his little swimming pool at home with his regular diapers since he could not wait to get in and my hands weren't fast enough, and it was a disaster. The diaper completely fell apart and all the absorving gel turned into small slimy chunks. That of course doesn't happen with the swim diapers so I guess that would make the biggest difference.
In the end, the swim diapers were so expensive (Pampers AND Huggies) and not useful nor required that we ended up getting him in the sea just with his bathing suit and would put on a regular diaper afterwards.
I guess people IT IS a huggies conspiracy for people that don't have kids or never tried swim diapers and feel "safer" at a swimming pool!

Dog Training said...

I'm with you on that one Nikki. Never could understand why people would spend their money on something as ridiculous as swim diapers.

And as you know (your followers don't) I don't have kids!

Anna-Maria said...

We live in Sweden and have been taking our kids to baby swim classes since they were 3-4 months old and they have never worn swimming diapers. They use tight fitting swim "knickers" with drawstrings around waist and thighs and we have never had an "escaping poop" incident.
Yes, once one of them did poop but the poop stayed in thanks to the draw strings so we had the itme to get out of the pool and clean the baby up.
Would that be an alternative? The once we had then are made by Dolphin Swimwear and I am not sure where you can find them but maybe you can google it and find out what they look like and where to get similar if not the same?

Nikki Van De Car said...

Anna-Maria--Maybe that's what my friend meant by the cloth swim diapers, in which case sold, because I am constantly annoyed by throwing those out (although I could be kidding myself about this, because when I was pregnant I was all "yay cloth diapers! I'm totally doing that!" but of course I totally did not.)

Nikki Van De Car said...

And Cecilia--I too have let a regular diaper dissolve into frightening goo which is IMPOSSIBLE to clean off, so yes, points for swim diapers there.

Izzy said...

Over here, it seems to be compulsory in most pools to wear swim nappies for under 3s, which is quite annoying since I've been potty training (note the continuous tense, 1st successes have since been overridden!) and don't really want to put him in nappies any more! Usually, I get a flood of pool water when I take it off him in the changing rooms, so all it is doing is collecting extra water!

Anonymous said...

My 8 month old uses reusable swim diapers made by Finis (purchased on diapers.com for $11) and I speak from experience when I say they DO keep the poop in. Pee, not so much. But urine is sterile, right? ;)

Anna-Maria said...

the swimming instructors who is teaching our kids to swim are not very fond of the "regular" swimming diapers as they give a weird position of the baby's body in the water and therefor the "swim trunks" with cords are much better

a ji o ji suno ji said...

Or you could do it like we do in WV...chili AND slaw (w/ yellow mustard and diced onions). Heaven on a bun :)
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Anonymous said...

forget diapers I prefer them naked