New mothers, do not give a full bath to your baby in the first week. Wait till the umbilical cord has fallen. You can do warm water sponging followed by quick drying and clothing. You can bath your baby daily in summer and hot, rainy season. However, in winters twice a week bathing is enough, either in a pre warmed room or a sunlit corner in the afternoon where there are no air currents. But even in winters wash their hands at least twice a day, sponge their face and neck once a day and keep the nappy area clean. In summer and rainy season you should specially clean areas where there is less air exposure and more sweat deposition like skin folds around neck, groin area, between hips on daily basis.
You should not use any specially labeled “baby” soaps and “baby” shampoos. Use any good non scented soap .There is no need to apply powders .Powders may even harm your baby by causing allergies and even lung disease. At the most you can use it on the moist creases of skin like nappy area.
Some Facts about Baby Bath
• Newborns enjoy bath time, but many don't, and it can sometimes be stressful.
• Bath time should be fun so if you are feeling stressed take a few minutes to relax before you begin.
• The room should be kept warm so the baby doesn't get too cold between changes. Babies can lose heat very quickly, especially if they are wet.
• The bath should be warm, not hot. Test the water with your hand or wrist before putting the baby in the bath.
• Never leave your baby alone in the bath or on a changing table.
• Many babies enjoy bath time but some don't, so you may like to wash only parts of their body at once instead of a full bath.
• A sponge bath for newborns may be easier in the first few weeks.
• Get everything you need ready before putting the baby in the bath because this will make it easier.
Items You Will Need
1. A baby bath or tub filled with warm water from the tap. Check it with your hand first to make sure it's not too hot. Make it slightly cooler if in doubt.
2. A mild soap, but use it sparingly because it can dry the baby's skin.
3. A mild baby shampoo or mild soap for their hair.
4. A good sized towel.
5. A set of clothes.
Follow these rules for safe bathing of the baby
• Hold the baby firmly, supporting her head and back with one hand and washing her with the other.
• Fill the bath with only six to eight centimeters of water for infants up to six months, and only until waist deep for older children.
• Shampoo the hair last and use only a small amount.
• Take the phone off the hook (or put on the answer phone), while the baby is in the bath.
• Put the cold water in before the hot to help prevent scalding. Test the temperature of the water with your hand before putting baby in it.
• Do not put the baby in the bath while the water is still running.
• Always stay with the child at all times. Take the baby with you if you have to leave the bathroom. Children can drown in less than an inch of water and in less than one minute. There have been tragic cases of this happening during brief distractions of the caregiver.