How to Bathe a Newborn? Some Tips for First-Time Parents

Your newborn’s first bath is a wowing experience. You must also be careful, as bathing newborns is a slippery business and can give you a tough time. But there’s no need to be nervous! We have compiled this small and comprehensive guide to help first-time parents looking to give their baby a perfect bath.

At What Times Should You Bathe a Newborn Baby?

Are you thinking about the perfect time to bathe your baby? You may also question how often your newborn should be given a bath? The answer is it really depends on when you prefer.

Whether you bathe the baby during the daytime or at night, the important thing is you should not be in a hurry. Finding some free time is necessary if your schedule tempts you to hurry up or interrupt the bath in between. This way, you can calmly give your baby the perfect bath.

Usually, it is fine if you’re bathing your newborn 2 to 3 times a week. Because as you change the diaper in between and change burp cloths, you clean the body parts that need the most attention, i.e., the face, neck, and diaper area.

However, there are two exceptions. If the umbilical cord has not fallen off yet, then you shouldn’t go for a bath. Also, if the baby’s circumcised penis has not healed yet, wait a few days for the wound to heal.

What Type of Tub Should You Use?

As babies are so small, you can use a small-sized sink as a tub for a baby bath. Also, you can use a small-sized plastic tub. Before making your baby wet, arrange the bathing supplies beforehand. Here are the essentials:

  • A sponge
  • A plastic bowl for rinsing water
  • Baby shampoo

By arranging the essential bath supplies ahead of time, you do not have to leave the baby alone in the water. As time passes and your baby gets a little bigger, prefer getting a baby bather seat for a comfortable baby bathing experience.

How Much Should be the Quantity and Temperature of Water?

The amount of water must be kept to a level where the baby can be safely given a bath. It is recommended to keep the water’s height to only about two inches. And in case the baby is inside the tub, and you’ve forgotten some essential bath supplies, always take your baby with you. Remember to never leave your baby alone in the tub, even for a few bits.

Your complete focus and attention are necessary while bathing the baby. And the same goes for water temperature. On a scale, the bath water’s temperature should be around 38 C (100 F). But always feel the water’s temperature with your hand. It is equally essential that the room where the baby is given a bath is warm. Otherwise, your baby is at risk of getting chilled quickly.

Tips on the Bathing Process

Once the time and place have been decided and you have all the baby bathing supplies with you, the next step is the bathing process. Below are the tips you can follow so the bathing experience is safe and fun.

Follow a Routine Pattern

Your baby’s mind and body learn to adjust to and remember a routine. So if you regularly bathe your baby at night before sleep, they will continue to respond to it. When it is time for a night bath, the baby will know it’s time to go to sleep afterward. Also, you should create a relaxed ambiance with dim light and no noise so that the baby can go to sleep.

Moreover, mama or papa can also bathe their baby at some other time in the morning or during the day. The key here is to follow a recurring pattern so the baby gets tuned to it.

See If Your Baby is in the Mood

If your baby is all fussy, taking them for a bath will only make them more irritable. Also, if your baby is hungry, you should postpone the bath. So, always go for a baby bath when your baby is happy, calm, or somewhat relaxed.

Hold the Newborn with Care

By holding your baby securely, you must ensure they are comfortable and safe. The best way to control the baby in a tub is by holding the head and neck with your left hand and supporting the rest of the body with your right hand - which is more powerful than the left hand.

Place your baby into the warm water feet-first. Another way of holding the baby is to bring one of your hands behind the baby and hold the opposite arm while bathing. Choose a style of holding that’s comfortable for you too and does not tire you.

What to Wash and When to Wash?

You should start out by rinsing the baby’s face and head first. Massage the head with a drop of baby shampoo before cleaning the face with a bar of soap. And then, rinse and clean the whole body. This way, you can save the rinsed body parts from getting soapy again.

Clean the Private Parts with Ease

Genitals are sensitive parts of the body. And you should go easy on the private parts while cleaning. Use a soft and clean cloth and moderate soap to clean the genitals or private parts. If it’s a baby boy with a circumcised penis, then slowly wipe it clean. And if it is a baby girl, softly wipe the vaginal region from front to back and clean the skin folds. Then comes the bottom. You need to take a little bit of soap and rinse that little bottom gently. 

Dry Gently After the Bath

After giving your baby a warm gentle bath, it is time to dry them up. Take a soft dry towel and just gently touch it to the wet areas of the body, rather than rubbing. Ensure to thoroughly dry every body part from the head to the bottom and feet.

Ending Note

Babies are delicate, and their bathing experience should always go unhurried and relaxed. Otherwise, you will hurt your baby in some way. This blog post shares all the essential tips you need to know for a perfect baby bath experience. Keep the above-mentioned Dos and Don’ts under consideration, and there you go. Enjoy a fun baby bath!