How Often Should You Bathe Your Baby From Birth Through Early Childhood
One of the most common questions new parents ask has recently become the focus of anongoing social media debate among celebrity parents, including Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis, and Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell: How often should I bathe my baby?
Some parents bathe their babies daily as part of a bedtime routine or due to regular baby messes, from extra spit-up to diaper blowouts. But for most families, bathing the baby two to three times a week is plenty after the first couple of weeks of life.
In fact, we recommend delaying your newborns first full bath for at least two weeks. Newborns shed about three layers of skin within their first week, which often surprises new parents. Their skin is still adjusting to the dry air, so its perfectly normal. You can prevent further skin irritation by moisturizing your baby with chemical-free lotion and washing their clothes with a gentle, chemical-free detergent before dressing them.
After that first two-week period, its OK to bathe your baby a couple times a week. You can follow this schedule through your childs elementary school years. Of course, you should modify the bath schedule based on your babys skin health and your familys lifestyle.
When Should Baby’s First Bath Be And When Should You Bathe Your Newborn
Wondering whats a good time to give your newborn a bath and when baby’s first bath should be? The scheduling of this event is entirely up to you as long as you pick a moment when you wont be interrupted or tempted to hurry through the bath. You should probably plan for baby’s first bath within a week after birth. Just avoid bathing your newborn right after a feeding or when she’s overtired.
Babies tend to be more alert in the morning, which is appealing to some, though others may slate it in the early evening as part of her goodnight activities. When its time to wind down, make her bathtime part of a relaxing bedtime routine that also includes a final bottle or nursing session, a book and a little song.
Keep in mind, however, that newborns dont need a lot of washing and at first, youll just be giving her a quick a sponge bath until her umbilical cord stump falls off, which usually happens about one to three weeks after birth.
Using Water Which Is Too Hot
Bath scalds are a very common cause of injury in young babies. Itâs a great idea to install a bath thermometer on the faucet, which clearly changes colour to show if the water is running at the correct temperature for an infantâs bath or not. Check the temperature of the water using the elbow â it should not feel hot, just warm. Donât make the water too cool though, as young babies get cold quickly.
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Setting Up A Newborn Bath: Tips
Heres how to get ready for a newborn bath:
- Take the phone off the hook or turn your phone off while bathing your baby. Youll be less likely to get distracted.
- Make sure you have everything you need within reach for example, towel, washcloth, cream or ointment, clean clothes and clean nappy.
- Avoid using soap because this will dry out your babys skin. If needed, use a fragrance-free oil or a gentle non-soap cleanser at the end of the bath.
- Position the bath somewhere stable and at a height where you can comfortably hold your baby.
- Fill the bath with just enough warm water to wash your baby. Use jugs of water to fill the bath if youre planning to bath your baby away from the tap.
- Take off your watch and jewellery and wash your hands.
- Check the water temperature is 37-38°C before you put your baby in the bath. If you dont have a thermometer, use your wrist or elbow to test the temperature it should be comfortably warm, not hot.
- Before bathing your baby in a sink, briefly run cold water through the tap once youve finished filling the bath.
- Dont add extra water while your baby is in the bath.
How To Wash Babys Scalp And Hair
Plan to wash your babys scalp or hair twice a week. To wash your babys scalp or hair, gently massage a baby shampoo into their hair, if they have any, or directly onto their scalp. Rinse it out by dabbing with a wet washcloth.
In a baby tub, you can also gently tip your babys head back and keep one hand over their forehead while you pour on some warm water. The water will spill over the sides of their head to rinse out the shampoo.
Gently washing your babys hair will not hurt a soft spot, but talk with your pediatrician if you have concerns. If your baby has cradle cap, you can gently brush your babys hair and scalp. But take care not to pick or scrape at their scalp.
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How To Sponge Bathe A Baby
Here is how I sponge bathed my two little boys. I hope this helps you.
- Collect all your babys bath essentials. I used cotton balls, a dry towel, diapers, and oil. Make sure you have all these items with you. Never leave a baby unattended alone.
- I bathed my newborn on the his baby changing table. You may pick another place that feels comfortable for you. I preferred the baby changing table because I could adjust the height and wash the baby while standing.
- Next lay a cotton towel on the baby changing table. Then place the baby on top of the towel and cover him.
- Then dip your cotton balls/wash cloth in water and sponge bathe the baby, washing small sections at a time as the baby is still wrapped in his towel. Lift just a small area, wipe, pat dry, cover then repeat until your baby is all cleaned up. Start with the face and head going downwards. Babies poop often so you want the bottom to be the last part you clean.
Reasons Why I Should Bathe My Baby After 8
Delayed bathing is not only healthy but
1. The safest medical choice for babies.2. Reduced risk of infection.3. In the first few hours after birth, a baby has to use a lot of energy to keep warm. If a baby gets too cold, he or she can drop their blood sugar or have other complications.4. Giving your newborn baby a bath too soon can cause hypothermia and low blood sugar. Thus, given that you have decided to bathe your baby too soon. The baby will not only cry but get stressed. When this happens the babys body will release a lot of stress hormones causing your babys blood sugar to drop. Which in turn makes your baby to fall asleep only to wake up and breastfeed. This is not a god thing as it will cause, your babys blood sugar to drop even more.
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How To Give Your Baby A Bath
Get everything ready before you start your baby’s bath:
Ensure that all the supplies you need like shampoo, soap, a hooded towel, and a cup for rinsing are within armâs reachânever leave your baby unattended in the bath, so make sure you have everything you need on hand, including your babyâs fresh change of clothes
Make sure the room is warm before undressing your baby.
Follow these step-by-step guidelines for bathing your baby:
Line a sink or baby bathtub with a towel, and fill it about 2 inches full of warm water âtest it with your elbow or the inside of your wrist to make sure itâs not too hot
While supporting your babyâs head with your non-dominant hand, use your other hand to guide him into the water feet first. Youâll want to do this swiftly so he doesnât get cold, and youâll want to make sure his head and most of his body are above the water level
Wash his body from top to bottom with clear water, and, if you prefer, a mild baby soap. Keep him warm by pouring warm water over his body using a cup. Use a soft cloth to wash his face
If he has hair, itâs enough to shampoo once or twice a week. When you do, massage a drop of mild baby shampoo into his scalp, even the soft spots of his head. Be careful not to get any soapsuds or shampoo in his eyesâcup your hands over his forehead when rinsing his head. If some soap or shampoo does get into his eyes, go ahead and wipe them using a cloth dampened with clear water.
Bathe Your Baby 1 To 3 Times A Week
After that, pediatricians recommend no more than three times a week for 10 to 15 minutes at a time.
“One to two times may be fine as well,” says Dr. Rob Darzynkiewicz, MD, Chief Medical Officer of Hazel Health. “This will help make sure your baby stays clean. Doing it more than that can dry out the skin, which is very sensitive.”
Over bathing can actually decrease the bacteria that naturally occur on your baby’s skin. This can not only cause dry and irritated skin but in some rare cases, it can cause an infection. But not bathing your baby enough also has consequences.
Bathing your newborn less often than once a week could result in rashes between the folds of the baby’s skin or in their diaper, Darzynkiewicz says.
So stick with the goldilocks range of one to three times a week.
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How Do You Give A Baby A Sponge Bath
Chances are youve never given yourself a sponge bath, and thus, are a little nervous to give one to your baby. Fear not: Sponge baths are very simple. According to the pediatrician, all you have to do is put a little soap on a wet baby washcloth and wipe your baby all over, starting at the head and working your way down. Next, repeat the process with a wet but soap-free washcloth to remove the soap from your babys skin. Voila, youre done.
How Frequently To Bathe Newborns
The AAP recommends bathing your infant three times a week until their first birthday. “Obviously there are unique messes that babies can find themselves in as they get older and more mobile that may require an extra bath from time to time,” says Dr. Grant. “But in general, this rule is sufficient as long as the diaper area is cleaned appropriately at each diaper change.”
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Giving Your Newborn A Bath: Steps
These steps make bathing your newborn easy:
Children can drown in a few seconds in very shallow water. Never leave your baby alone in the bath, even if youre using a bath seat or cradle. Never leave older children or siblings to supervise. If youre disturbed by the phone or another task, take your baby out of the bath.
Using Too Many Products
Newborn babies have very sensitive skin which is easily irritated by bath products with fragrance. Itâs best to just use plain water to clean your baby for the first several months. If you choose to use shampoos and soaps in your newbornâs bath, itâs best to opt for those specially designed for babies, which are fragrance-free. Natural options are best, for example, lavender is great to use at bedtime to help your little one relax.
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Best Time Of Day To Bath Baby
How often should I bathe my newborn baby?
Generally there is no stipulated time for bathing your baby. However, you can bath your baby at any time of the day. But , what is important is to choose a good time when you are free . I would advise that you go for the morning bathe routine as it makes up time for both the baby and you .Why I say this is because babies in general are not yet old enough to be able to regulate their body temperature well. Hence, If your baby feels cold, he or she will not enjoy his or her bath. However, bathing your newborn baby in the morning is considerably a safer option. In addition, bathing your newborn in the morning has many benefits for both the baby and the parent. Because, when you bathe your baby at this time it allows him or her to get warmer as the day progresses.
How To Give Baby A Sponge Bath
Your newborn should be bathed with a sponge bath for the first few weeks of life. This is the simplest way to clean your baby before the umbilical cord falls off.
Sponge baths are also the best way to bathe boys who were circumcised while the circumcision site heals.
You can also give your baby a sponge bath anytime you want to wash one part or all of their body without getting them soaking wet.
Before giving your baby a sponge bath, make sure you have all the supplies you need within easy reach. Youll also want to warm up the room to keep your baby comfortable.
Once youve gathered your supplies, follow these steps:
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