Having a baby can be a nerve wracking yet magical experience.
There are so many ‘first times’ to experience with your child; ranging from first bike rides and first days at school, to first smiles and first words. Having children is truly incredible, and raising them can be a fascinating adventure all on its own.
One particular first time that can be quite worrying for both the parents is bath time. Giving a baby a bath can be stressful, especially if the baby is new to bath times or particularly anxious around water. There are a lot of elements to consider when you’re setting up bath time with a newborn, including temperature, mood and safety.
Many children can get anxious around bath time, which is an added layer of stress from the perspective of a parent. Newborn babies in particular can find bathtime unsettling, as they like to be held and can often feel a loss of control. Other factors like cold water, unfamiliar textures or a lack of eye contact can be unsettling too.
So, how can you make the bathtime process easier for your new baby?
That’s what we’ll be looking at today. Luckily, there are a number of great ways to make a bath time more enjoyable- for both the baby and you. In this blog post, we’ll be going over 8 great ways to improve your bath time experience, covering everything from temperature and routine, to eye contact and recommended products.
Establish a routine
One of the most important things to do with your baby is to establish a routine surrounding bathtime. As pointed out in this handy article, it’s a great way to help calm your baby and to let them know what to expect. Anxiety in babies during bath time often stems from the fear of the unknown, so having a routine is vital.
It’s also important for you, as well. Having a set time that baths happen allows you to plan your week out more effectively, and can reduce any potential rushing or stressing on your part.
Get a comfortable, small baby bath
Something else that you can do to make bath time easier with your new baby is to get a comfortable yet compact baby bath. Bathing your baby in a specific, fitted bath is a great way to make sure that they feel safe and secure- and that you feel safe and secure with them being in the water, as well.
If you’re not sure on where to start with buying a baby bath, we’d recommend looking online for reviews and guides. This guide from GiftWits on the “Best Baby Tubs Money Can Buy in 2020” is particularly helpful as a starting point.
Put a warm washcloth on your baby’s tummy
Contact and hugs are very important for newborn babies, and this can be tricky to do when they’re in the bath. One particularly great way to keep your baby calm and happy is to put a warm washcloth on their tummy while they’re in the bath. It works like a charm.
Look into bathtub seats
Another great way to make bath time easier with a new baby is to get a bathtub seat. Bath tub seats help to support babies, and to keep them feeling comfortable, as suggested in this brilliant piece of work by Baby Gaga.
If you’re on the hunt to buy one for your child, we’d suggest taking a look at a website like Amazon. There are plenty of specialist retailers on there, with built in shop and product reviews that you can check out before buying.
Keep eye contact
An effective method of keeping a baby calm in a stressful situation is to simply keep eye contact with them. Speak to them while you’re bathing them, in a soothing and happy tone. Use gentle movements and keep smiling at your baby, to keep them feeling secure.
Make sure that the water is a nice temperature
One of the most important things that you can do when bathing your baby is to make sure that the water is the right temperature. Generally speaking, it should be comfortable and at room temperature, to make sure that the baby stays warm.
Try to avoid using water that’s too hot or too cold, for obvious reasons. If you’re not sure about the temperature, get another member of your household to check it as well for a second opinion.
Opt for baby-friendly shampoo and soap
This may sound like an obvious point, but it’s vital to make sure that your shampoo, soap and other bath products are suitable for babies. Babies have very sensitive skin, after all, so to make your bathing experience more pleasant it’s important that you use the right products.
Put your baby bath inside your regular bath
A final way to make bath time easier for new babies is to put the baby bath inside the regular bath. This helps babies to associate the bigger bath with being calm and looked after, and to help remove anxiety about it as they get older.
To sum up
As you can see, bath time doesn’t have to be an ordeal. It can be an anxious experience giving a new baby a bath, but it’s important to try and quell this wherever possible. Babies can pick up on their parents being anxious, and tend to reflect this in their own behavior.
Try to focus on establishing a routine with your baby that’s mutually beneficial, and work on creating a calm environment. Items like baby baths and seats can be very helpful, as can soothing baby shampoos and toys. As your child gets older, why not incorporate toys like bath crayons? It’ll make the experience more fun for both of you.
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