Your baby’s skin should be kept clean at all times as it is crucial to his or her health. To this objective, bathing is the best way to keep your newborn’s skin clean and healthy. If you have never bathed a baby, you might be nervous and worried that you may do something wrong. Don’t fret. Bathing your newborn isn’t as complicated as you imagine and after doing it a couple of times, you’ll be good at it. Soon, you and your newborn will enjoy bath time and use it as an opportunity to bond.
Pediatricians recommend bathing your newborn baby twice or thrice a week. When the baby gets older, moms can increase the bathing frequency. While bathing a baby may seem easy, only moms will understand how challenging it can be. There are a few methods you can use to bathe your baby. You will probably be advised differently by your friends as compared to the pediatrician on ways to bathe your newborn. But what are the medically approved bathing methods?
Sponge baths are recommended for the first few weeks after childbirth. Ideally, carry on with the sponge bath method until the baby’s umbilical cord stump detaches from the baby’s navel and the region heals completely. Plus, it helps to keep the wound clean and dry and prevent the risk of infections.
A sponge bath implies cleaning your newborn using a wet washcloth. Ideally, find a warm room and a clean towel should be within reach. Some of the essentials needed for a sponge bath include:
- Washcloth or sponge bath sponge
- Baby powder
- Lukewarm water
To bathe your newborn, lay him with his face up on a flat, comfortable surface, preferably a bed. Dip the washcloth in lukewarm water and squeeze out any excess water. Wipe the face and his or her entire body. Focus mainly on areas such as the neck, behind the ears, diaper area plus the armpits. To conclude, apply baby powder or baby oil on your child’s skin. Dress him and wrap him up snugly in a soft blanket.
After the umbilical cord detaches from the baby’s navel and the resulting wound has completely healed, you can then bathe your baby in a tub. Some infants oppose this transition, but after a few battles, he will soon look forward to a tub bath. Based on some hospital research, babies who are bathed in tubs retain their body temperatures much better than sponge bathed babies, which means they didn’t feel as cold during baths as sponged babies. This is yet another reason to transition to tub baths when your child grows older. You will need the same essentials that you used for a sponge bath.
Fill the tub with up to 2-3 inches of lukewarm water. While supporting your baby’s head and back with one hand, lower him gently into the tub. Soap and wash his body paying keen attention to his armpits and the genital area. Next, pat him dry with a towel. Apply baby powder or baby oil and dress him up.
Never leave a baby unsupervised in a bathtub. If you’re trying to juggle a few things, say cooking something and bathing your baby, finish up with your baby before you handle the rest. Alternatively, a confinement nanny can help you bathe your baby if you’re too busy with other tasks.
Some babies may resort to crying and act all cranky during the bathing process. Don’t worry as soon, she’ll get used to this ritual. Eventually, it will be an amazing sight to see your baby wrapped up tightly in a towel after a refreshing bath.