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Bathing a newborn

Posted by Anonymous
  • 7 Replies
He still has his little cord stump and also the plastibell. Tips on a way to get him clean? Aside from baby wipes.
Posted by Anonymous on Jul. 21, 2013 at 1:56 PM
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by Anonymous 2 on Jul. 21, 2013 at 1:57 PM

warm water sponge bath...

by Emerald Member on Jul. 21, 2013 at 1:57 PM
I laid a towel on the bed, and got a basin of warm water and rag and baby soap and did a sponge bath with mine.
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by on Jul. 21, 2013 at 1:57 PM
A wet soapy wash cloth, just avoid that area.
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by Anonymous 2 on Jul. 21, 2013 at 1:57 PM

How dirty can he be, if he still has those things? bathing a newborn really isn't necessary, and bad for their skin

by Gold Member on Jul. 21, 2013 at 1:58 PM
I gave my son wash cloth wash downs with warm water and aquaphor baby wash :)
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by Anonymous 3 on Jul. 21, 2013 at 1:59 PM
Sponge bath. I like to use the baby bathtub with newborn sling, and just not add water to the tub. Just use a warm wash cloth to wash her. That way she is supported in the seat and its easier to do it with 2 hands, and the water won't make a mess
by CAFE SASSY HBIC on Jul. 21, 2013 at 2:00 PM

How to Bathe a Newborn

Until his umbilical cord drops off (which will happen after a couple of weeks), you'll need to give your baby sponge baths. Here, a guide to bathing a newborn.

bathe a newborn

With everything else you have to do as a new mom, the good news is you need to sponge bathe (and later tub bathe) your baby only once or twice a week for the first month or so. (But you may want to do it more often just for the pleasure of cooing over those tiny toes, stroking that silky skin, and clocking some prime bonding time.) To begin, find a flat surface — bathroom or kitchen counter, bed, even the floor — in a warm room, choose a time when your little one’s well rested and not too full or hungry, then follow these steps for bathing a newborn.

Gather your supplies. Have everything you’ll need at your fingertips before you start. Otherwise, you’ll have to gather up your naked newborn mid–sponge bath to fetch whatever you’ve forgotten. Here are the essentials:

  • One or two cotton washcloths
  • A couple of plush towels (the bottom one can be hooded)
  • A mild, unscented soap or body wash and shampoo (or a product that does double duty)
  • Cotton balls
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • A plastic basin filled with warm water
  • A plastic cup
  • Baby lotion
  • Diaper cream (if your darling’s rash-prone)
  • A clean diaper
  • A fresh set of clothes
  • A blanket or two (one to cover parts of him during the sponge bath and another for after the sponge bath if your baby likes to be swaddled)

Set up your baby’s sponge-bath site. Layer one towel on top of the other. Arrange everything else within easy reach.

Prep your baby. Lay him down on the top towel and strip him down to his birthday suit. You’ll be washing the top half of his body first, so drape the blanket over his lower limbs to keep him toasty.

Focus on his face first. Dip a corner of a washcloth or cotton ball in the warm water, and gently wipe one eye from the inner corner outward. Using a different corner of the cloth or a clean cotton ball, clean the other eye. Wet the washcloth entirely and wash your munchkin’s mug, especially around his mouth and under his chin where milk and drool can pool, and inside and behind his ears. (Never use a cotton swab to clean inside your cutie’s ears.) It’s okay to use a little soap on your baby’s face for stubborn crud.

Wash his body. With the blanket still in place over his lower body, dip the washcloth in warm water and wash your little one’s neck and torso. (You usually don’t need soap when cleaning most parts of your newborn — they just don’t get that dirty). Maneuver carefully around the umbilical cord; it’s okay to gently wipe away any crustiness around it. Next clean under his arms and between his fingers, reposition the blanket so it covers the top half of his tiny body, then clean his legs and toes. Be sure to get into those little creases and skin folds.

Clean the diaper area. If your baby boy is uncircumcised, no need to pull back his foreskin; simply wipe his penis clean. Do the same if he’s been circumcised, and then follow whatever directions your doctor has given you. If you have a girl, gently wipe the folds of her vagina. Next up: that tiny tush. (Be sure to use a little soap for this part of the baby sponge bath.)

Shampoo his hair — if he has any, that is. (If he doesn’t, use a washcloth on his bald noggin.) Using water and a tiny bit of shampoo, lather your baby’s scalp. To rinse, hold your critter football-style (the back of his head cradled in one hand, his body draped along your arm) with his head over the basin. Fill the cup with water and gently pour it over your baby’s head.

Dry him off. Peel off the top towel (it’s probably damp anyway) and use the bottom one to pat your sweetie dry.

Lotion him up. If your baby has dry or eczema-prone skin, massage a hypoallergenic lotion into his skin (warm it first between your palms).

Diaper and dress. Finished bathing your newborn? Slip on a fresh diaper and dress your little one in some clean clothes. If he needs a little soothing after his sponge bath, swaddle him in a blanket. Then settle in for some serious snuggling with your clean, sweet-smelling sweetie.

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