How to give sponge bath to your baby?
Bathing helps your baby stay clean and fresh. Newborn babies have very delicate and soft skin. With proper skin-care and bath-time routine, you can maintain that texture. If your baby is clean, it helps them combat different diseases and infections.
Contrary to popular belief, during the first few weeks, you don’t have to bathe your baby every day, instead, it is advised to bathe your baby 3-4 times a week. It is beneficial for their umbilical stump. Newborn babies have low immunity and bathing them, every day might result in having a cold. With all the wiping of their face after feeding and diaper area, bathing can be limited to 3-4 times a week.
Babies should not have a bath in a tub full of water until the umbilical cord falls. Till that time, they can be given only a sponge bath. It is recommended not to use any soap while bathing your baby, but you can consult your pediatrician and use soaps specifically made for babies.
Bathing also establishes a connection with your baby. Skin-to-skin contact helps in strengthening your bond with your baby. It makes your baby feel secure. Moreover sponging your baby is a fun experience not only for you but also for your baby. Hearing their soft giggles fills your heart with joy. It also helps in developing his sensory alertness.
SPONGE BATH & ITS NECESSARY STEPS
It is best to give your baby a sponge bath in the first few weeks, till the umbilical cord has fallen and the umbilical stump has healed. Before you start with your baby’s sponge bath, make sure that you have all the pre and post requirements of the bath ready.
• Choose a time: It is very important to choose a particular time to bathe your baby. Usually, moms prefer early mornings or calm evenings. Your baby should be comfortable with the timings too. They should be alert and active and not drowsy. Choosing a perfect timing and following it, consistently helps in developing a routine, which is good for your baby. A good routine helps in inculcating good habits.
• The next step is to gather everything you’ll require, both pre and post the bath. Pre-bath requirements include A tub filled with warm water, a large soft towel and a soft washcloth. Post-bath requirements include A clean set of clothing, diapers or nappy, brush, mild moisturizing lotion and a holding blanket.
• The room temperature should be moderate, not too hot or not too cold.
STEP 1: Make sure your baby is calm and not anxious. You can hold her or rock her for some time to help her calm down. She should be active and alert. It is healthy for your baby to pay attention to the whole process, it helps in maintaining a routine. It prevents her from getting overwhelmed.
STEP 2: Undress your baby, but keep the diaper on and wrap your baby in a flannel or soft towel. The aim is to expose only those parts, which you plan to wash. It helps your baby stay warm.
STEP 3: Start with your baby’s eyes. Use soft, wet cotton balls or a clean cloth and wipe around the eyes and eyelids and the area surrounding it carefully. Don’t poke your little one’s eyeballs.
STEP 4: Next dampen a washcloth and clean their face gently. Clean their ears and nose with utmost care. And do not let water enter into the inner ear canal. Hold your baby properly and wash their hair as it gathers a lot of oil, dust and moisture.
STEP 5: Clean their neck and chest next. You can use a mild baby cleanser to wash their bodies. Take extra care, while cleaning the base of their umbilical cord and don’t be afraid. Don’t apply too much pressure and try being as gentle as possible. At this point, you can take out their diaper. Clean their genitalia thoroughly and the whole diaper area to prevent skin irritation and body rash. It prevents infections.
STEP 6: Now you can wrap your little one in a towel and wait for them to completely dry. Pat the baby dry. Ensure that the diaper or nappy doesn’t cover the umbilical cord, as it is to be kept dry at all times to fall off quickly. After they are completely dried up, apply some mild moisturizer, put on a nappy and then dress her with a clean set of clothing. And seal it with a sweet kiss.
Only after the umbilical stump falls, you can give your baby a proper tub bath. Make this a fun activity and use it to bond with your baby. Give your undivided attention to your baby and show her how much you care for her. This is the best time to bond with her. This can be a pleasurable experience for you as well as your baby.