Hidden danger in disposable diapers

Hidden danger in disposable diapers

Disposable diapers have revolutionized parenting by offering convenience and ease of use. However, many parents may not be aware of the potential health risks associated with the chemicals found in these diapers. This article delves into the hidden chemicals in disposable diapers and their potential effects on children's health.


One of the most concerning chemicals found in some disposable diapers is dioxin. Dioxin is a byproduct of the chlorine bleaching process used in the production of wood pulp [1]. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), prolonged exposure to dioxin can cause severe health issues, including reproductive and developmental problems, immune system damage, hormonal interference, and an increased risk of cancer [2]. To minimize these risks, it is advisable to use chlorine-free diapers.

To learn more about the health and environment concerns related to dioxins in diapers, click here .



Many disposable diapers contain fragrances designed to mask odours [3]. These fragrances can be problematic, as they often include a mixture of up to 4,000 different chemicals, many of which are not disclosed due to proprietary reasons [4]. The chemicals in these fragrances can lead to allergic reactions such as asthma attacks, headaches, contact dermatitis, and respiratory issues. The vague labeling of 'fragrance' makes it challenging for consumers to know exactly what they are exposing their children to [4].

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)

Disposable diapers can emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) due to the adhesives, fragrances, and synthetic dyes used in their manufacture. When exposed to heat, these chemicals are released into the air.

As stated from HealthLinkBC, VOCs are a group of chemicals that can lead to irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat, and may cause symptoms like shortness of breath, headaches, fatigue, nausea, dizziness, and skin problems. At higher levels, they can irritate the lungs and potentially harm the liver, kidneys, or central nervous system. Extended exposure to VOCs could result in more significant damage to these organs.

Certain VOCs are also suspected to cause cancer, with some known to be carcinogenic to humans.[5]


Understanding the chemicals present in disposable diapers is crucial for making informed choices about your child's health by opting for diapers that are chlorine, fragrances, and harmful VOCs, parents can reduce the potential health risks associated with these products. While disposable diapers offer convenience, it is essential to weigh this against the possible dangers they pose to children's health.

At Cozycove, we place the safety and well-being of our little ones at the forefront by ensuring that our diapers are free from harmful chemicals such as dioxin, VOCs, and fragrances, creating a nurturing environment for babies to flourish. Recognising the significance of offering such a secure environment, we warmly invite you to experience the difference firsthand by trying our complimentary diaper sample [here]. Keen to learn more about the environmental impact of disposable diapers? Delve deeper [here].

[1] DeVito,M,J. & Schecter,A. (2002). Exposure assessment to dioxins from the use of tampons and diapers. Environmental Health Perspective. https://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/doi/10.1289/ehp.0211023 

[2] World Health Orginazation. (2023). Dioxin. https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/dioxins-and-their-effects-on-human-health.

[3] National Eczema Association. (2013). Fragrance and Perfume Allergy and Eczema FAQ. https://nationaleczema.org/blog/fragrances-perfumes-eczema-allergy/ 

[4] Swanson,S & Leiba,N. (2020). EWG’s Healthy Living: Guide to Safer Diapers. ENVIRONMENTAL WORKING GROUP.  https://www.ewg.org/research/diaper-guide

[5] HealthLinkBC. (n.b). Indoor Air Quality: Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs). https://www.healthlinkbc.ca/healthlinkbc-files/indoor-air-quality-volatile-organic-compounds-vocs.
Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.