Bath time is something that is a part of the daily routine since the time a baby is born. But the question is – what is the safe way to go about it? You certainly don’t want to hurt your beloved in any way, so let us guide you through.
Doctors generally recommend delaying bathing the baby for the first few days to prevent washing off the vernix which is a waxy layer on your baby’s body to shield it against germs. After a hospital delivery, nurses generally clean the amniotic fluid and the blood. Once you arrive home, you can use a sponge for the same.
Wait for the umbilical cord to fall off before submerging your baby in shallow water and giving it a nice bath. You can bathe your baby thrice a week during its first year. Though it should serve well if you clean the genital area properly after changing every time, you can also bathe your baby every other day. Avoid increasing the frequency as it can dry out your baby’s skin.
Now, let’s make bathing your baby a piece of cake with the help of this step-by-step guide.
- Giving a sponge bath
- Bathing in a bathtub
1.Giving a sponge bath
At least till the umbilical cord falls off, this is the safest option. If you have a baby boy who has undergone circumcision, giving a sponge bath is a fantastic idea to give that area some time to heal. Babies tend to be messy, and if you want to clean only a part of their body without getting it soaking wet, a good sponge will come to your rescue.
Here’s a list of the supplies you must have within easy reach, besides a warm room to have a comfortable experience –
- padding for hard surfaces, such as a blanket or towel
- a bowl of warm, not hot, water
- mild baby soap
- clean diaper
- baby towel
Ensure that the room is warm enough (say, around 24 degree Celsius) before removing your baby’s clothes and wrapping it in a towel.
Lay your baby on a flat surface. Alternatively, you can also keep your baby off the ground. Your hand should support your baby at all times to prevent it from falling.
Unwrap the towel gradually exposing only the area that you are washing.
Clean your baby’s face with a clean cloth dipped in warm water. Don’t use body wash or soap as it can get into your baby’s eyes or mouth. Starting from the top of the head, clean the outer ears, chin, neck folds, and eyes.
Now, add some soap to the water and dip the warm cloth in it.
Use the soapy water to clean the rest of the body. Pay special attention to the underarms and the genital area. However, avoid cleaning the penis if your baby has undergone circumcision to keep the wound dry.
You are all done! Dry your baby with a clean towel and put on a clean diaper.
Check out this 100% organic cotton hooded towel by Ninio for that extra care. Keep your baby’s head dry with a hooded towel that is well suited to the sensitive skin of your baby.
2.Bathing in a bathtub
After the umbilical cord falls off, you can safely bathe your baby in a bathtub by following these steps –
Fill the tub with two to three inches of water.
Undress your baby and place it in warm water right away to prevent it from catching a cold.
Use one hand to support your baby’s head and the other to keep their feet first in the tub. Make sure that the head and neck are above water at all times.
To ensure that your baby is warm in the tub, gently splash the water on it.
It is safe to use a baby-friendly shampoo once or twice a week. Clean its face and hair with a clean washcloth.
Use a warm washcloth to clean the rest of the body from top to down.
Finally, lift your baby from the tub gently and use a clean towel to pat it dry. Don’t forget the creases on its skin!
Note – Never leave a baby unattended in a tub of water. Even a shallow amount of water is enough to drown a baby quickly.
The bottom line
We are sure that these steps will make bathing time one of the favorite parts of your baby’s routine. If your baby is fussy, make sure that the room is warm enough and the water isn’t too hot. You can soothe your baby by wrapping it in a towel while giving it a sponge bath. For any additional queries, reach out to us!