For many first time parents the thought of bathing their newborns for the first time can be scary and intimidating. I know exactly how that feels! I didn’t bathe my first born until her umbilical cord fell off. My mom would take my daughter a bath up until I was comfortable in doing so. Bathing a newborn baby doesn’t have to be stressful or scary anymore, it can actually be a fun bonding experience for you and your baby.
Knowing how to bathe a newborn is going to help you achieve this important milestone. I’m going to guide you step by step how you can successfully bathe your newborn with an umbilical cord and without, the easy and stress free way, of course!
Take it from a mama of three (twins included), who learned the first time around. When I had my twins, I was not scared when it was time to take them their first bath because I knew the steps to take! I hope you find these tips on how to bathe a newborn helpful and useful 🙂
Easy step by step guide on how to bathe a newborn baby
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First things first, before you can start taking your baby his first bath, how exciting!! You’ll need to have these essentials for bathing your newborn. Make sure you have these items prepared before hand, this way it’s easier for you to move quickly and effectively. Having a bath time basket with all of the essentials in it can help keep you organized!
Bath time essentials
- Baby wash cloths
- Baby bathtub
- Bath towel
- Baby lotion (optional)
- Diaper rash cream
- Baby body wash (unscented)
How to bathe a newborn with the umbilical cord:
Since your newborn does not need to be inside a bathtub yet, (umbilical cord can’t get wet), you can simply find the best and comfortable location where you would want to bathe your baby.
It can be in your bedroom, baby’s nursery or where ever you want. Just make sure the room is not cold at all, it should be at room temperature. You’ll need a towel or soft blanket to lay your baby on. Let’s start!
1.Lay your baby on a soft patted surface( towel, blanket(not the fuzzy ones) or on a baby bath sponge.
2.With a wash cloth or sponge, damp it in warm water and start by washing your baby’s face and hair
3.Move down to under their chin( spit ups usually gather around there)
4.Now it’s time for his tummy, go around the umbilical cord, making sure it does not get wet.
5.Wash baby’s bottom, privates and legs. It’s time to dry him up, careful with the umbilical cord. (You can carefully patted it dry if it gets wet).
6. It’s time to dry your baby! With a clean and dry towel start drying your precious newborn, you can apply baby lotion (optional) and baby rash cream. Put on a clean diaper and clean comfortable clothes and you’re done 🙂
How to bathe a baby without the umbilical cord:
1. Fill baby bathtub with warm water, not hot.
2.Holding your baby, slowly place him in the water covering his tummy.
3.Hold baby’s head or body at all times. (He can slip off, baby still needs your support). Place a baby bath mat on top of the tub, this way your baby doesn’t slip!
4.Using your hands or wash cloth, pour baby shampoo on it, just a little. And begin washing your baby’s head and body.
5.Rinse your baby off to remove the shampoo or body wash, be careful if it gets in his eyes!
6. Remove baby from the bathtub and place him on his bath towel on top of a flat surface!
7.Dry him up, put on some baby lotion (if you want)
8. Put on a clean diaper, diaper rash cream and his new clothes on. Your baby is now happy, fresh and ready for his feeding 🙂
Have extra helping hands
Have your partner or a family member help you bathe your newborn baby, at least for the first couple of times. He can help you hold the baby while you bathe him. If you need to step away to grab a bath time essential, your partner is there with the baby. It’s all about teamwork!
Should you bathe your newborn baby before or after a feeding
I always fed all three of my kids after taking them a bath when they were babies. Taking your newborn baby a bath before feeding will ensure that he does not spit up during bath time. Also, it will prevent any poopy accidents during bath time!
How often can you bathe a newborn baby?
The good news is that you do not need to bathe your newborn every day. In fact only a couple of days a week is recommended. This will ensure that your baby’s skin does not dry up. Besides newborn baby’s do not get dirty that often. Besides their dirty diapers of course!
Important things to remember:
- Never leave your baby unattended while in the bathtub. Please take him/her with you if you need to go grab something.
- Keep in mind there may be some crying involved. (some babies do not enjoy taking baths)
- Keep your room at room temperature, you baby may get cold easily.
- It can get messy mama! But can also be so much fun!
Taking your newborn baby a bath for the first time can be intimidating and plain right scary! I was definitely not comfortable taking my first born a bath with her umbilical cord still intact. But, I learned as I went.
Remember that it will get easier and you’ll soon be a pro at bathing your newborn baby with and without the umbilical cord. These easy steps will guide you into a stress free newborn bathing experience.