Make Bath Time Safe For Baby

Bathing your newborn for the first time may seem a bit scary – for you and her. Make bath time safe with these easy tips.

Newborn first bath

Baby’s first bath

Your tiny newborn doesn’t need to be put in a tub for his first bath – a simple sponge bath will do the trick and is a gentle way to introduce bath time. Place baby on a flat surface like a changing table lined with a thick towel to absorb excess water.

Wet a soft sponge with warm water, wring it out and smooth the sponge gently over baby’s face and body. Use wet cotton balls to clean baby’s eyes. Soap isn’t a must for baby’s first bath. When you do use it, choose a mild soap designed for babies. Cover baby’s exposed parts with a towel while sponging off other areas so he doesn’t get too cold.


Before you start baby’s bath, have all the items you’ll need within arm’s reach:

  • Towels for baby’s bath surface, to cover him and to wrap him up after bath
  • Soft sponge
  • Cotton balls and cotton swabs designed for baby
  • Diaper wipes
  • Baby lotion
  • Fresh diaper
  • Baby’s clothes or pajamas

When to bathe baby

Newborns really don’t need a bath every night. In fact, bathing him too often can dry out his sensitive skin. Use your judgment as to when baby needs a bath as well as the time of day you decide to bathe baby. If a warm bath calms him, make nighttime baths your ritual a few times a week. If he’s invigorated after a bath, go ahead and bathe him a few mornings a week, and then get ready to play!

Baby tubs

Options abound when it comes to baby baths but you don’t necessarily need a tub designed for babies. You can simply bathe baby in the kitchen sink or regular bathtub, but make sure to line the bottom with extra towels or a non-slip mat. Don’t fill the basin with more than three inches of water.

More on your newborn

How to get help with your newborn
Gentle ways to encourage baby to sleep
How much and how often should a breastfed newborn eat?

Tags: new mom advice

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