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Baby Bath Time

Updated on October 14, 2011
Baby in a robe after bathtime.
Baby in a robe after bathtime. | Source

Every new thing takes some time to get used to and taking a bath for the first time is no exception. Bath time is one of the most important things for a baby to enjoy. It may be difficult at first to bathe a child, because they do not express joy for the feeling of being plunged into warm water. Most babies begin their bath time with pure disapproval; however this should not discourage you from bathing your child.

Once a baby loses their umbilical cord plug, they are now ready for their very first bath. The first bath is a whole different experience than the sponge bath they have been slowly growing used to. They are now going to be covered in water, which is an experience they have surely forgotten since being born. It may seem a little confusing how much babies do not like their first bath, considering they spent up to forty weeks growing inside of mom’s belly completely living in a fluid filled sack. Be gentle and expect some tears for the first few baths.

A baby's skin is extremely sensitive to temperature change, so it is important to never give your child a bath under running water. At one point or another we have all been the unlucky victim of a sudden water temperature change. It is not a fun time for an adult, and even worse of an experience for a small child. Always fill a tub with warm water, and use a toy or a cup to rinse shampoo from the baby. Use your elbow to check the water temperature. The water should feel cool against your skin, and leave no red scouring marks. It is important to make sure a washcloth and towel are in reach, because you should never leave your child alone in the bathtub.

Take a gentle approach to bath time; bring in some colorful objects for the baby to look at while they are in the tub. These objects can distract the child and also relax them. Very small infants do not yet have the ability to grab at objects, but they will stare at different shapes and colors. Although they cannot yet see color, they are able to distinguish change, and they are fascinated by new things.

As the child grows older, they will seem to enjoy bath time more and more, and actually prefer hanging around the tub longer. If they have been into a swimming pool already, expect playful splashing and playing. Bring in some playful and educational toys that your little one can use during bath time. Several companies even offer water-proof books, which allow you to turn bath time into a fun learning experience that you and baby can enjoy together.


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