Actual bathing of your baby starts immediately the umbilical cord heals properly. Several steps need to be considered when carrying this out, among them being safety.
Safety Measures when Bathing Your Baby
- Never leave your baby unattended in a basin or bath. Babies can drown in a foot of water.
- Don’t bathe your baby straight after a feed or when they are very tired or hungry. The baby may not fully enjoy their bath time at these times.
- A non-slip floor mat should be put in place in the bath area. The lack of one may cause injury to both mother and child.
- Take care not to bathe your baby in hot water to prevent scalding.
- Always keep your baby’s head clear of water.
- Keep the room warm as babies tend to lose heat very quickly.
How to Bathe Your Baby
- Babies usually need baths only twice or three times a week. Pick a convenient time and make a routine of it. This is also good for bonding.
- Getting organized should be at the top of your list. Have the bath essentials you will need (bath or wash up bowl, baby soap, lotion or shampoo, towel, nappy or diaper and set of clean clothes) ready before you begin.
- Clean your babies face by placing them on your knee first
- By holding the upper arm and supporting your baby’s head and shoulder, slowly lower them into bath or bowl.
- Once your baby is in the bath or bowl use your other hand to gently swish water on your baby without splashing
- Consider using a stool or picking a comfortable position for your back. This is advisable because of postpartum back pain after the delivery process.
- The last thing to do is shampooing baby’s hair. Doing it early on will only fill their bath water with shampoo and will lead to additional work changing the water,
- A baby’s hair should be shampooed at least once or twice a week.
- After this is done, lift your baby slowly out of the bath onto a warm, dry towel.
Following this guide will go a long way in making sure that your baby’s birth time is event free and filled with joy and fun.
Please note that development differs from one child to another. Content intended for educational purposes only, and should not be substituted for medical advice from your doctor.
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Last reviewed March 2019