Bathing Your Baby: Tips and Tricks to Make Those First Few Baths a Success
For some of us, baths can be a relaxing, soothing experience, and many parents hope to share that experience with their newborns.
The only problem: For the first month, babies hate being naked, cold and wet, so the baths given those first few weeks can be traumatic for both parents and the baby.
Here are a few tips to make those first baths as calm and stress-free as possible.
Tip 1: Choose the Right Bathtub.
There are lots of different options when it comes to bathtubs for babies. First, choose where you would like to bathe your baby. Some people prefer a sink, while others prefer a bathtub that goes inside the larger bathroom bathtub.
The ideal bathtub is one with a slip-free surface, so the baby does not slip down into the water.
Another key feature is one where the water drains continuously through a valve. A bathtub that fills with water can sometimes get too cold for the baby, as the water immediately begins cooling down as soon as it stops flowing.
Tip 2: Be Prepared.
When bathing a newborn, you want to minimize the time the baby is naked and wet – for both safety reasons and also to make the process easier for both of you.
Before you place the baby in the water, make sure you are prepared with everything you will need. Lay out the clothes you will place the baby in after the bath. Prepare the diaper and gather any rash cream or lotion you might need. Make sure the soap, towel and washcloth are all within reaching distance of the tub. At no point during the bath should you take your hands off the baby, so it’s important to have everything you will need close by.
Tip 3: Choose the Right Temperature
There are many thermometers available for testing the temperature of the bathwater – some that float, some that attach to the water spout. The most reliable method of testing the temperature will always be an adult’s skin. Use the inside of your arm to test how the water feels, rather than a hand, which becomes accustomed to hot or cold.
Tip 4: Know It Will Get Better
With all the prep work completed, you can get your baby in and out and clean in no time. Just know that those first few baths are tough for everyone, and it will get better soon.