Bathing your baby should happen two or three times a week at most during their first year. Bathing your baby more than that may dry out their skin.
Bathing Your Baby During the First Weeks
Until the stump of the umbilical cord falls off, your newborn should only have sponge baths. Lay the baby in a comfortable spot, (I’ve learned that buying one of those sponge-like bathing pads works great) and in a warm room. Next to the sink, or even inside the bathtub will work fine.
Have a some water handy either in the tub, sink, or small basin or sorts and use mild baby soap. It is a good idea while bathing your baby to keep your baby covered with a towel and only expose the areas that you are currently washing. First, use a dampened cloth without soap to wash their face so they do not get soap in their mouth or eyes. Wash the entire body, but wash the diaper area last, so you are not washing your baby’s body with a soiled cloth. Be sure to get those hidden spots caused by baby fat, around the arms, creases in the legs, and especially wash well around the genital area.
Once the umbilical cord is healed, then you can place your baby in the water. Their first baths should be quick, gentle, and simple. If they are still not ready, it isn’t a big deal. Simply continue bathing your baby with a sponge bath, then try it again in a week or so.
Most parents find it is easiest to bath your newborn in the sink, bathineette, or simple plastic tub. There are many choices when it comes to baby baths. Do some research, and find one that you believe will work best for you and your baby.
Important Things to Remember When Bathing Your Baby
You don’t want to scald your baby so turn the cold water on first, and adjust the warm water in. Turning the hot water off first and turning the cold water off last is a good rule of thumb to go by. Make sure you have everything you need before your beg started. You do not want to leave your child for a second, even if you just have to walk across the room to get the shampoo. If something arises, and you have to go do something, e.g. (answering the door) take your baby with you!
Does Your Baby Love Taking Baths?
That’s great! Give them some time to play and splash around. The more fun they have, the less apt they are to be afraid of water later on in life. Bathing your baby should be fun and relaxing. Don’t get in a hurry unless you have to.
After the Bath…
When you get your baby out of the bath, I’ve found that the towels with hoods work best in keeping them warm!!