How to Bathe an Infant

Baby care is not always common sense.

New parents rightly want to be extremely careful when taking care of their new infant.

One task that often eludes new parents is how to bathe a newborn or baby.

It is therefore essential that the parents be aware of how to clean their newborn.

While this is something many people take for granted, there is a right way and a wrong way to do it.

How to Bathe an Infant

Here’s how:

Warm or cold water

Infants should be bathed daily.

The idea is to keep them clean at all times and not to give bacteria and germs an opportunity to accumulate.

In order to achieve this, warm water has to be used.

Most parents prefer to bathe their newborns in the evening.

This is is perfectly okay.

Some parents use slightly cold water with the view of making the newborn become accustomed to their environment.

Very cold water is not recommended.

All in all, regular warm baths are a sure guard against disease-causing bacteria and germs.

While warm water is recommended in the initial days of the newborn, it is okay to lower the temperature after a few months have elapsed and the child is more acclimatized.

It is however good to still continue using sponge baths.

Some parents even let the child take warm baths inside a mini-tub especially in the summers when the weather permits.

Bathes should be well monitored and regulated.

It is prohibited to leave a newborn in a cold water tub for extended periods.

The newborn’s skin

Care should be taken to wash the newborn’s skin with the right shower apparatus.

Soft sponges are ideal as well as towels and clothes which are approved for showers.

Hard and gritty sponges are forbidden as these can be rough on a newborn’s delicate skin.

Some newborns have a lot of fatty tissue and some parents attempt to get to the dirt that is lodged inside the folds.

Care should be taken when doing this.

When bathing a newborn, special care should be exercised especially when washing such sensitive areas as the eyes, armpits and genitals.

Soap should not be allowed inside a newborn’s eyes and caution should be exercised when scrubbing the groin area.

Gels, soaps and shampoos

Sometimes because of economic hardship, parents may use their own shower gels and shampoos with a newborn.

While no research has been able to prove that this in itself is harmful, it is recommended that you gels and shampoos that are approved for newborns.

If you bath your baby more frequent, it will only cause rashes and damages to her skin.

Remember also that as long as the leftover of the umbilical cord remains intact, you should only bath your newborn with sponge.

When should you bath your baby?

Well, basically you can do it any time of the day, but if you want her to sleep better, you might want to bath your newborn just before bedtime.

You don’t want to rush for those items in the middle of the bathing process!

This is vital, because you must not leave your baby neglected even for a glance.

You should always at least one hand on your newborn.

When is your baby ready for a tub bath?

Well, after sponge baths (that means after the umbilical cord leftover is healed), you can bath your baby in a sink, or a plastic tub lined with a clean towel.

If your newborn’s been circumcised, then you should wait until it heals, then a tub bath is OK for her.

When you first get over that initial scare of bathing your infant you will find that it can be fun and enjoyable for the both of you.

There are some arguments over how fast you should give the baby a full bath after it is born.

Having had children overseas where this belief is not followed you know that it is perfectly fine to give your child a full bath from the very beginning and that the cord is nothing to worry about when it comes to giving your baby a bath.

The decision on how to give your baby its first few baths is completely up to you and what you feel the most comfortable doing.

In order to make it easier for you, getting a small baby tub may be a good idea since many of these tubs can be placed in the kitchen sink, on the counter or on a table.

This way you don’t have to lie on your knees next to your bathtub plus it gives you a little more secure position to handle the baby.

Many of the infant tubs also provide some sort of back support and are not very deep.

Regardless of where you give your baby a bath you should not have too much water in the tub. Maximum 3 inches is recommended.

Before putting the baby in the tub make sure the water is not to hot and whatever you do fill the water in the tub before placing baby in it.
If there are sudden changes in the water temperature it can easily leave burn marks on a little baby.

If you find that your baby cries every time you give him a bath don’t be alarmed.
it can take months before your baby actually starts to enjoy the water and having a bath.

Prior to giving your baby a bath, be sure to have everything you need at hand, things such as soap, shampoo, sponge, washcloths and towels.

For no reason should you have to take your child out of the tub to go and grab something you forgot.

You probably don’t like to get out of the tub until you are done either?

It goes without saying that you never take both hands of your baby as long as he is in the water.

It does not take much water for a baby to drown.

Crucial Tips to Remember

Finally, here are some extra points you should consider during your baby shower:

  • Make sure the room where you bath your newborn is free from wind breeze.
  • Make sure the bath water is warm. Not too hot, nor too cold.
  • Feel the water first with the inside of your wrist.
  • Wrap your baby in a towel instantly after pulling her out of the water, so she won’t slip from you.

When all of this is said, get over your worries and just enjoy the bath time with your baby and when you feel comfortable enough you can even take a bath together with your baby.

Have a merry baby shower!