The typical parenting routine of bathing is often fraught with worry and uncertainties about when and how to perform it properly. In addition, some newborns protest bath times, while a few others enjoy being in the water so that they might cry when you get them out of the bathtub. So, to make the bath sessions stress-free for you and make them soothing for your newborn, here is a curated list of do’s and don’ts, tips, and tricks that can help you manage your newborn’s bath times like a breeze.
Get yourself and the baby prepared for bathing
Before you take the baby to the bathtub, there are a few things that you should keep prepared beforehand. Fill the tub with warm water, keep all the things you will need like baby soaps or bubble baths, baby shampoos, and towels within your proximity. Remove all the jewelry you wear in your hands – rings, bracelets, watches, and bangles so that they don’t hurt your baby while giving a bath.
Arrange the things you will need after the bath and right before the bath so that you don’t leave your baby unattended after the bath. It could include a fresh set of clothes, napkins, newborn baby accessories, and after-bath body lotions. Take your baby at least an hour after feeding so that he is not angry. Hungry babies can get unmanageable to handle during bath times. Ensure there is at least a 30 minutes gap between the feed time and the bath time. You should also get rid of the habit of checking your phone or talking to your friends when you give a bath to your baby. Instead, choose to talk to the baby and sing to create memories with her.
How often should you bathe your newborn at home?
Until your baby’s umbilical cord sheds off, sponge baths are sufficient. You can make the baby lie on his back over a flat surface and wipe the baby with a clean towel after dipping it in warm water and squeezing off the water. You can start from the face and wipe all through his body. While cleaning the areas around the genitals, be gentle not to hurt your baby. Once the umbilical cord falls, you can start giving your baby a bath in the bathtub. It is more than enough to bathe your babies 2-3 times a week. However, if your baby loves the bath sessions, you can also give a bath every day. Also, keep the bath timings to just about 10 minutes, as anything longer than that can rip off all the oils from your baby’s skin and make it extremely dry.
Getting the baby bathtub prepared
Fill the bathtub with warm water to about 25% of its capacity. Next, check if its warm and not hot or cold. A simple way to check the correct temperature is to put your elbow into the water. If you feel it warm, it will be warm for the baby. In case it is either hot or cold, mix appropriately and give a nice stir for the water to be of uniform temperature all through. Now, repeat the elbow test method.
The actual bath method
Place your baby in the water as soon as you’ve undressed her, so she doesn’t become chilly. One hand should support her head, while the other should lead her in, feet first. Encourage her by talking to her and slowly lowering her body till she’s in the tub. For her safety, most of her body and face should be high above the water level. You’ll need to pour warm water over her body periodically.
Here are a few more things you need to pay attention to after getting your baby bathed.
Choose natural oils and skip talcum powders after bath time
After you give a bath to the baby, wrap him in a super soft towel and make him lie on the bed. Pat dry his delicate skin. If your baby’s skin looks extremely dry, you can apply very mild baby lotions or a few drops of natural oils like virgin coconut oil. Talcum powders are a big no during the first three months. Not only can those fine powders get into your baby’s respiratory system, but the synthetic chemicals and artificial fragrances in these talcum powders can also irritate their gentle skin.
Keep the bath toys clean
Tub toys are great to make bath time more interactive and engaging with babies. However, most parents leave the wet tub toys in the bathroom for several hours in humid conditions, making them breeding grounds for mold, germs, and even algae. So, you should always make it a point to keep them spic and span so that they are safe when your baby puts them in the mouth or near the eyes. You can clean them by boiling them in hot water, cleaning with disinfectant wipes, soaking the toys in vinegar for about a couple of hours, and washing them off with a regular dishwasher detergent.
Bath times calm newborns and make them feel sleepy. So, after giving your baby a relaxing bath, you can try putting them to sleep. You can invest in an organic cotton baby blanket for a snug and happy sleep after bath time.
I am Enola Andreas, a post-graduate in humanities and communications, and an inquisitive person who loves writing. My forte is digital marketing and everything that has to do with phones and screens. I’m working for Tiny Twig . I am someone who believes that one person can make a change and that’s precisely why I took up writing which is the best tool to communicate these days. I have a decade of experience in writing and marketing.