How to Bathe a Newborn Baby
How to Bathe a Newborn Baby
Are you a new parent? Then you will be very proud to see that your baby is slowly growing up to become a toddler! He will be experiencing a number of firsts, which is one of the most exciting moments of every parents’ life. Not only will he get to experience these firsts himself, but through your help, he will be nurtured and helped as well! One of these first as a newborn baby would be bathing him.
These may actually be one of the scariest tasks a parent would face, as they want their baby to be clean and not hurt him while bathing. Instead of going by on your own, here are some ways and tips on how to bathe a newborn baby.
Why Learn How to Bathe a Newborn Baby?
You may be wondering: Why should you bathe a newborn baby? Aren’t they delicate? Don’t they need to simply be wiped or to change their diapers? Some parents opt to wipe them down, avoiding to bathe their baby as they seem too delicate for water.
For starters, babies are able to handle water quite well, so there’s no need to worry about drowning or hurting them with the substance, unless you leave them underwater for minutes (which I’m sure is something a parent would NEVER do). Another thing is, it’s very important to learn how to bathe a newborn baby in general in order for you to be prepared for parenthood, or to help out around the house if your relatives or friends have babies themselves!
So, how exactly are you supposed to bathe a newborn baby? There is no surefire way, and there are a lot of methods parents and caretakers can choose from, depending on their preference. But before all that, there must be some preparation involved! This is the first step to learning how to bathe your newborn baby.
When to Bathe a Newborn Baby?
Your baby won’t be getting down and dirty, which obviously means you won’t need to bathe him regularly. But a good bath is needed once in awhile to guard your newborn baby off bacteria and certain viruses that may be caused through an unbathed body. It’s best to start with a sponge bath (Which will be shown later on) until the umbilical cord stump heals, which takes a few weeks after his birth. When that’s done, he may be ready for the infant tub bath, moving on to the real bathtub once he is older and too big for the former.
It’s recommended to bathe your baby 2-3 times a week for him to stay fresh and clean. There is really no specific time as to when he should take a bath, as that is entirely up to you and your schedule. Once he grows up and starts to explore, that’s the time you should start bathing him when needed, which can be everyday or every other day, depending on the parent.
Sometimes, parents would want to keep bathing their baby because of how cute and fun it starts to get, especially when your baby seems to be enjoying splashing around the waters. Because of the chubby skin and cuteness overload, parents would love to document this by taking photos and videos, even inviting loved ones to witness the baby’s first bath! That means it’s time to get your camera prepared as well.
How to Bathe a Newborn Baby?
When it comes to bathing a newborn baby, there are two main methods on keeping him clean, such as:
What you will need is a basin filled with warm water, soap, and a sponge in order to bathe your newborn baby. Prepare a soft towel and your baby’s clothes as well for easy cleaning after the bath. If your baby is lying down on a hard surface, make sure that you put pads under him to ensure that he is comfortable. Here is how to give your newborn baby a sponge bath:
- Undress your baby and place him on the changing table. Only undress parts you will be washing in order for him to keep warm.
- Wet the washcloth or sponge with water, rinsing your baby carefully.
- You can either simply rinse him, or use mild moisturizing soap if he seems to be dirty or smelly.
- Make sure that if you are using soap, you clean and wipe every nook and cranny to avoid soap residue.
- Once well-rinsed, clean your baby’s eyelids and between his fingers and toes with soft cotton or gauze.
- Wrap him up with the towel and start changing him to his new clothes and diaper.
- And you’re done with your first sponge bath with your baby!
On to the next method, which is when your baby’s umbilical stump heals. What you will need are the following materials:
- An infant tub
- Warm water
- Mild soap and baby shampoo
- Washcloths and cotton for cleaning your baby
- Items for after the bath, such as a soft towel, clothes, diapers, a comb and lotion
- If ever the umbilical stump is still attached, ready rubbing alcohol as well.
- Bath toys are optional and will make it more entertaining for your baby, so if he is amused with that, bring them on!
- A camera for documenting the fun experience, as well as some help from loved ones in case it can get daunting or more manpower is needed.
Here is how you will be able to bathe your newborn baby in an infant tub:
- Prepare all your materials and supplies to avoid having to waste time looking for it. Also prepare yourself, making sure you’re dressed appropriately. You will get wet, so roll up your sleeves! Remove any accessories or avoid wearing zippers and material that may harm your baby while bathing him.
- Prepare the tub and place it in appropriate places such as the sink in your kitchen or bathroom to avoid making messes. Make sure that the bathtub is facing in a way that the faucet and running water won’t hit the baby’s head. You can even opt to baby-proof your sink beforehand. Do NOT bathe your newborn infant in a real bathtub, as this may end up with him getting hurt due to his small size and fragility.
- Fill the tub with a few inches of warm water. Do not submerge your baby in water! You can test the temperature by putting your elbow or wrist in the water, or to use a thermometer. When in doubt, go for something cooler, as babies are more susceptible to heat.
- Time to bathe your baby! Lay him down the tub with his feet first, supporting him the whole time.
- Begin washing your baby thoroughly, using washcloths and the mild soap and shampoo. Just like sponge baths, make sure you wash and clean every nook and cranny to avoid soap residue. If you are shampooing your baby, opt to get a baby visor in order for the water to avoid going into his eyes.
- Once he is well-soaped and fully rinsed, you can now get him out of the tub and dry him immediately, making sure that his head is covered the whole time.
- Now you are done with your baby’s first bath in the infant tub!
Whether it’s a sponge bath or using an infant tub, here is what you do AFTER you bathe your newborn baby:
- Make sure that he is fully wrapped with the towel to avoid him from getting cold. Also, make sure that his thigns (clothes and diapers) are already prepared for him to be clothed quickly as he may get cold easily.
- Lay him down on the changing table and start applying any lotion or ointment needed. If his umbilical stump is attached, dab cotton with rubbing alcohol on it.
- Put on his diapers and dress him up. After that, comb his hair if needed. Check any parts of his body that needs to be dried. If not, your baby is now ready for another day!
It’s very important to learn how to bathe a newborn baby in order for them to be properly cleaned and well taken care of. Knowing the proper way to bathe a newborn baby is important for you to avoid hurting the baby, as well as cleaning them efficiently and with ease. No need to be nervous about it, as it helps them become acquainted with the water and bath time. As time goes by and your baby starts to grow, he will soon learn to love bath time, as will you! So what are you waiting for? If it’s time to give your newborn baby a bath, don’t be nervous and have fun with this chore.