New Mums – Bathing your baby…. where, when and what do you need!

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How often should I bath my baby?

Its completely up to you how often you bath your baby, some babies love to be in the water and giving your baby a warm bath can become a fun relaxing ritual for both of you and an extra way to bond and enjoy some quiet time together!

This isn’t to say you must bath your baby every day if your baby is new-born a bath two or three times a week will be sufficient to keep him clean.

Bear in mind if you live in a hard water area too much tap water may dry out your baby’s skin.

Between baths:

  • Wash your baby’s face regularly
  • Wash your baby’s genitals and bottom after each nappy change

When you do bath your baby for the first time it’s a good idea to have someone with you for support as handling a tiny wriggling wet slippery baby takes practice and confidence……don’t expect to have it nailed first time! Also its good to have another person in case may have forgotten something you need.

Where should I bath my baby?

Chose a warm room and have the heat on prior to bath time you don’t want your baby to get a chill…..if its before bed dim the lights down and maybe even have some soothing music on and a section set up for a baby massage after and their final feed. This can really help get baby settled for bedtime and hopefully get you those all important extra hours of sleep!!!

What do I need?

Before you start, gather all the things you’ll need.

These may include:

  • A bowl of warm water for face washing.
  • Several clean pieces of cotton wool.
  • A sponge or flannel.
  • A mild, liquid baby cleanser using these products will protect your baby’s natural skin barrier.
  • At least one clean, dry towel. Hooded towels are good for wrapping up your baby from top to toe.
  • A bath thermometer, if you have one, for testing water temperature.
  • A muslin square, old flannel or towel if you have a baby boy. He may do a wee when his nappy comes off and he feels the fresh air on his skin.
  • A clean nappy and clothes.
  • A warm blanket.

A few steps to make bath time easier:

  • Keep the room warm and close windows and doors if there is a draught.
  • Put cold water in first, then hot, so that the water is comfortably warm.
  • Use a bath thermometer, if you have one, to check that the water is about 37 degrees C to 38 degrees C. Or use your elbow, rather than your hand, to gauge the temperature. It should feel neither hot not cold.
  • For new-born and babies up to six months old, fill the bath with about 13cm (5in) of water. Or just make sure there’s enough to allow your baby to settle in the water with his shoulders well covered. Never fill more than waist-high (in sitting position) for older babies.

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