Baby bath, the right moves to wash the baby


  • 1 Bath: when to do it
  • 2 Bath for babies: where to do it
  • 3 Baby bath and temperature
  • 4 Baby bath: what to keep ready
  • 5 How to bathe your baby
  • 6 How long should baby baths last?

For some it is a very sweet moment, of total relaxation, for others it is 10 minutes of screams, splashes, tears and nervousness. Bathing in the first weeks of a newborn's life is certainly one of the first obstacles that new mothers have to face. Alone in most cases, at home, between diapers, gushing pee and "slipping" children. 

Certainly, the first bath - which obviously "is never forgotten" - does not seem an easy test to face. But a few simple rules are enough to make a routine appointment into a relaxing break for the little one and for you. Here then are the steps to follow. 

Baby bath: when to do it

The bath is not an obligation, a medical prescription and as such it must be lived: for this you have to find the best time of the day and there is no pre-established one. There are children who love it in the morning, as soon as they wake up, and others who prefer the evening hours. Usually after the bath the baby is more relaxed and ready to sleep and therefore many parents choose to do it in the evening, to facilitate sleep, but it is not a "law" written in stone.

To give the baby the first bath, however, it is necessary to wait until the stump of the umbilical cord has fallen out and healed properly. That is the official "green light" to the pan. Prepare your smartphone camera for videos and photos to send to grandparents!

Bath for babies: where to do it

Once you have decided when to do it, it is equally important to choose the place: you must be comfortable and safe and have everything you need close at hand. For this you can decide to bathe in the bathroom sink (if it is large enough) or in a soft plastic or new generation resin tub. You can choose the bathroom or any other room that is practical and well equipped. 

Baby bath and temperature

The next step, dear mothers, will be to establish the temperature of both the environment and the water. In the room where you will have a bath it is advisable not to exceed 23 degrees and never to drop below 20. It is better that there are no currents and sudden changes in temperature. As for water, you can easily use the many nice thermometers that exist on the market, or the classic elbow (or another sensitive part of the body): the temperature must be similar to that of the baby's body, however between 37 and 38 degrees.

Baby bath: what to keep ready

Before undressing and immersing the baby, make sure you have everything, absolutely everything you need nearby: never, ever leave your baby unattended. The most dangerous domestic accidents are precisely the most stupid ones, due to trivial distractions. 

Put a large bath towel next to the tub or sink (even triangular towels are just fine) and smaller towels (which you will need to dry your face, feet and the most delicate parts of the body where the skin thin must be thoroughly dry to prevent it from soaking). 

Do not forget a diaper, massage oil, a cream for the bottom if it is reddened (zinc paste), a brush, clothes for changing and, if the child has a lot of hair, even a hairdryer (to be used only for distance and placing a towel in front).

How to bathe your baby

And then the fateful moment: calmly undress the baby and try to talk to him to make the atmosphere sweet and intimate. Immerse it up to the shoulders putting the left arm behind the neck and holding the left armpit of the child with the left hand (obviously these are generic indications: if you prefer the other hand inverted). With your right hand, gently wash the baby with a non-foaming detergent with a neutral pH (around 5,5) which can be oily or starchy. In most cases, it shouldn't even be rinsed. 

How long should the baby bath last?

There is no set duration of the bath, but it is advisable not to exceed 10 minutes in the first months, then he will not want to go out anymore. Now take the baby out, wrap it gently and dry it carefully. Put it on and that's it. 

Text updated on 30 June 2022

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