HOW TO GIVE YOUR BABY A BATH IN 10 EASY STEPS.
More parents are opting out of having their freshly born babies getting a bath at the hospital. It's true that rubbing the vernix in, rather than washing it off, provides a nice seal to keep out all the Who-knows-what floating around a hospital. But this trend has left parents without any training wheels when giving their bundles of wiggly, floppy joy a bath.
To anyone scoffing or rolling your eyes, let me say this: you will forget what your name is, how to open a car door, and what sleep ever was when you have a new baby. The simplest things become the most difficult, nerve-wracking tasks imaginable.
Luckily, bathing your baby can be done in 10 easy steps.
1. Have a baby. See? You're off to a great start! This is going to be a breeze.
2. Pick a location for the bath. Will you opt for the kitchen sink or keep all baths in the bathroom? If you choose the kitchen sink, be sure it is free of any dishes and washed down thoroughly.
3. Find tub or cushion to keep your baby secure and safe during bath time. Inflatable cushions usually work best in the sink as their main purpose is to give comfort to the baby. Babies should be on their own, smaller, tub until they can sit up on their own.
At that point, you can start giving your little munchkin a bath in the tub like you take a bath. Babies newly born only need to be wiped down. Lie them down on the towel naked and cover them up with another towel.
4. Gather supplies. A washcloth always comes in handy when giving a baby a bath. It can even double as a toy for your little one. Having a cup nearby will also help when you want to rinse your baby down. Soap, but we will delve into that more on step 6. Last but not least, the towel. You do not want to be stuck with a wet baby and no towel.
5. Get the temperature just right. There are a few tools for checking to make sure the temperature of the water is right for your baby. You don’t want it to be too hot or too cold. Some baby tubs now have a thermometer built into it. But, if you are looking for keeping things more economical than there are thermometers that can go into the water and flash if the water becomes too hot or too cold. These can be used later when your baby is old enough to sit in the bath on its own without a tub. The skin on the inside of your wrist is more sensitive than your fingers. So in a pinch, if it feels too hot or too cold it probably is.
6. Wash! If your baby is a newborn, you will not need any soap. Use a washcloth to wipe them down with just water. Babies before six months don’t really need soap either. Their natural oils will nourish their skin and the good bacteria that are forming their immunities won’t be washed away. Never use antibacterial soap on a baby, regardless of age. Mild soaps are always best.
7. Check those adorable baby rolls. Rolls and wrinkles on babies can soften anyone’s heart and hypnotize you with how cute it is. The downside is that you can easily forget to wash them during the wash step. That means under the chin, too!
8. Rinse. Rinsing your baby is just as important as washing with soap if you are to that stage. Left over soap can dry out or irritate a baby’s skin.
9. Dry your baby off. Use a towel to pat your baby dry. As adults, we tend to quickly scrub ourselves with the towel like we are trying to buff a few extra years away. Try to lose that habit when drying off your baby. Baby skin is delicate and you can keep it that way with a little extra attention. Make sure you have a steady grip on your baby before removing them from any tub or sink. They are already wiggly Jell-O moulds, after a bath, they are extra slippery.
10. Lotion your baby. You will only need to start using lotion when your baby is old enough to use soap. Remember those natural oils? If they get washed off with the dirt and grime of the day then you need to give your baby’s skin a helping hand and put some lotion on. As with soap, a mild lotion is best.
Try not to stress over bath time. Let it become a special time for you and your baby. You will form your own rhythm over time and become an expert in no time!