Bathing a newborn is a daunting task for most new parents. The idea of taking your fragile package and making them slippery and hard to hold can send a shiver down your spine. Here are some tips to make the process easier.
Until the umbilical cord falls off, you should not give the baby a tub bath at all. The baby should be given sponge baths until then. After the cord has fallen off, you may begin tub baths. Newborns do not need to be bathed everyday. If you are changing the baby as soon as the diaper is soiled and wiping off the babys hands and face each time you change his diaper, your baby only needs a bath two or three times a week. Bathing your baby more often can dry out his skin. After your baby starts crawling around and getting into things, he should be bathed every day.
Here’s how to give a sponge bath:
- Make sure the room is warm. Babies lose heat easily.
- Place a soft towel on top of the changing table to cushion the baby and catch any drips. If you do not have a changing table you can use a firm bed or even the floor if it is warm enough.
- Get a bowl of warm water, a wash cloth, a towel to wrap him in when done, baby shampoo, a clean diaper and clean clothes.
- After you have everything ready, undress the baby and place him on the changing table. Use the safety strap.
- Use the extra towel to cover up the parts of the baby you are not washing to ensure that he stays warm.
- Wet the washcloth with water. You may want to add a small amount of baby cleanser to the water if your baby is especially dirty.
- Wash the baby, paying close attention to the diaper area, the hands, the neck, and all his creases.
- Wash his hair, supporting his neck with your other hand. Use only a drop of shampoo, rinse with the washcloth.
- At no time should you leave your baby unattended, even for a second. If you are interrupted or forget something, take the baby with you.
After the umbilical cord has fallen off and the surrounding area has healed you can move on to tub baths. Babies need special tubs specifically designed for newborns. They should not be given a bath in the family tub until they are older. If your baby is tiny, you may be able to use the kitchen sink if it is well scrubbed and rinsed before hand and it is lined with a towel.
- jamiehans3 posted this