Bathing a baby can be quite an adventure. Is the water too hot, too cold, too deep? How long should the bath last? And why is the baby STILL squirming?
In a recent article published by The Bump, they give a step-by-step guide on how to safely bathe a baby – all in efforts to make bath time a fun adventure instead of a stressful one.
We outlined the first steps of the guide below. For the full article including bath-side setup, check out The Bump website!
- Washing station – your setup should be steady and there shouldn’t be anything hard or sharp for baby to accidentally knock against
- Warm room – keep the temperature raised so it’s not a shock to baby’s system when she comes out of the bath.
- Water – fill the tub about three inches with water a little bit warmer than lukewarm. Use pitcher or cup to pour water over baby and rinse off.
- Soap – go easy on the amount, because too much can dry out baby’s skin.
- Washcloths – Designate a certain color or pattern used specifically for bath time so you don’t confuse them for diaper cloths.
- Special treatments – diaper cream, cradle cap treatment, or any other remedies should be within reach.
- Timing – pay attention to baby’s mood after bath time. If he/she is energetic and ready to play, bathe during the day. If more mellow, make it a pre-bedtime activity.
- Procedure – Start by soaking baby a little. Always keep one hand on baby, and remember that infants are slippery when wet. If baby needs cradle cap treatment, put this on first, then come back to rinse after you’ve washed the rest of the body. Start from the top and work your way down. Wash the face first, cleaning one area at a time. As you move down the body, thoroughly wash inside all the folds. Sweat and skin can get stuck in those areas and fester, causing nasty rashes, so it’s important to keep them as clean and dry as possible. Save baby’s dirtiest parts (aka the diaper area) for last. Then, move back up and wash baby’s hair. Since infants lose most of their heat through their heads, this should be your very last move. If the water is still warm you can engage in a little playtime, but resist the urge to splash for too long — as the water chills, baby will quickly get cold.