Bathing your new baby is essential but it can be a daunting experience too. It seems easy on paper but they are so tiny, that you might be scared to hurt them. Being bathed should be a fun experience for the little one and as they get older, it’s something they will grow to love. This guide will tell you how to bathe a baby step by step so that you are more confident when the time comes to do it.
I recommend using a baby bath to bathe your baby, they are a better fit for your little one and they also mean that you will feel more in control. If you don’t have a baby bath, opt for the kitchen sink rather than a regular bath-tub. Fill the bath to half way or just under half way, your baby does not need a lot of water! Test the temperature of the water using your elbow, it should be lukewarm (around 37 degrees celsius is perfect.)
Before you put your baby in the bath, make sure you have everything you need nearby beforehand. This might include a baby-friendly soap, shampoo, best baby washcloths, cotton wool balls and maybe a rubber duck or similar kind of toy. Lay a cosy towel on the floor nearby, along with a clean nappy and clothes. This is so you can wrap him/her up and dress them after you have finished bathing your baby. Make sure you are wearing loose clothing and no jewellery that could scratch your baby during the process of bathing.
Gently pick your baby up and place them into the bath feet first, being sure to hold their head and neck the whole time that they are in the bath. Your baby will become very fidgety and possibly agitated when they get wet, so be aware of this and make sure to keep a firm hold on them.
It’s time to start washing your baby using a cup or your hand. Use the baby wash cloth to bathe their body, arms and face. Use cotton roll balls to wash trickier places like the ears and eyelids. Wash the genitals after you wash everything else and make sure to be gentle on this part of the body. If you want to use a soap to wash your baby, make sure it is unscented and neutral to help avoid any reactions.
If your baby has hair and you wish to wash it, this should be the last step when you are bathing them. Lean him or her back slightly and gently massage water into the hair and scalp. If you are using a baby shampoo, make sure to only use a small amount and wash it out properly. You should also create a “visor” with your hand to stop it getting into their eyes.
It goes without saying that a baby should NEVER be left unattended in the bath. Even if they are a little older and can sit up by themselves, it’s a serious risk that is not worth taking. A baby can drown in as little as sixty seconds in just an inch of water!
Rinse any remaining soap off your baby using a cup filled with bath water before removing your little one from the rub. Towel dry your baby and get him or her dressed like you usually would.
If your baby is in a good mood during bath time, don’t rush the experience. Playing with them and helping them feel relaxed in the water will greatly benefit them. It’s something completely new for them and you should both try to enjoy it.
Now that you know all there is to know about how to bathe a baby step by step, you can be more comfortable in the process as a new parent. You might not do everything perfectly the first time you do it but that does not matter. Safety is the most important thing so make sure you take the mentioned measures to make sure your baby’s health is the number one priority. With some patience and practice, this should be something that you become good at it which is comforting for yourself and your infant.
Author Bio: My name is Kristi and I’m a mother of 3 beautiful angels, founder of Intelligentmother.com. This blog was created in order to share my personal experiences in baby care and general health care for pregnant women. You will surely find many interesting insights and problems solved on this blog.