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Bathing Babies Every Day Is a Waste of Time

Posted by on Oct. 9, 2013 at 10:10 AM
  • 14 Replies


Bathing Babies Every Day Is a Waste of Time

posted by Jeanne Sager


baby bathI stuck my head into the baby bath aisle at the store the other day, and I couldn't believe how much STUFF was there. All I was looking for was one bottle of hair detangler, but it was a sea of baby shampoos and baby conditioners and baby bathtub contraptions and so on and so forth. It's been awhile since my daughter was a baby, so I'm trying to remember: was it like this when I had an infant? Did parents really need all this stuff? If they do, how often are they bathing that baby?

With the amount of stuff on the shelves -- not to mention some of the comments I've heard dropped by parents of newborns -- it seems like parents have taken the same zeal for ridding the world of germs that's made hand sanitizer ports crop up EVERYWHERE to babies.

They're bathing their little darlings daily. At least.

That's one phase of uber parenting I'm glad to say I skipped. Bathing baby all the time is a waste of time in my book.

Soap.

Shampoo.

Water.

Time.

You name it, and if you're bathing your baby more than once or twice a week, you're wasting it.

I know that's pretty much the opposite of what many parents think. You don't want to be the parents with the dirty kid, so you wash them as often as you can, maybe even as often as you wash yourself.

But just think for a second, would you? When does your baby get dirty?

When the diaper blows out, and you go into sanitize everything mode? I agree, that calls for a bath, but how often does that happen? Once a week? Twice, maybe? Anything more, and I have to advise you invest in a new kind of diaper.

But where was I? Oh, right, babies getting dirty. Babies aren't like us. They don't sweat.

Aside from a diaper blowout, there isn't much that's really making a baby stink. Maybe some spit up, a little mushed peas in the hair? 

Dip a washcloth (a baby-sized one or one of your own) under some warm water, wipe baby down, and you're good to go. Lots of time saved and money too.

Here's the truth of the matter: the thriving baby product industry wants us to think that we need to constantly be strapping infants into special tubs and lathering up their little locks with special suds, but just about any doctor out there will tell you to avoid over-bathing baby. Daily baths, according to the experts over at the Mayo Clinic, can actually end up hurting baby's delicate skin. As for all those lotions advertised to protect baby's skin from drying out, they're largely unnecessary -- if you keep them out of the drying bath to begin with.

At most, the American Academy of Pediatrics says a newborn should be bathed three times a week. At most!

Still think you need that economy-size bottle of baby shampoo?

How often do you bathe your baby? Could you see yourself doing it less?

by on Oct. 9, 2013 at 10:10 AM
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Replies (1-10):
Larsbug
by on Oct. 9, 2013 at 10:13 AM

 my 4 year old showers every morning because he's at school everyday and gets sweaty (he wants a shower)...but my 18 month old, gets a bath every 3-4 days. He isn't around the other kids like his brother and he isn't sweating or getting dirty like his brother. We live in Colorado, so our skin gets super dry here, giving him a bath everyday would be horrid for his skin (which is still baby soft)  :0)

bebcarroll
by on Oct. 9, 2013 at 10:45 AM

Oh, gosh my kids all have eczema, if I bathed them every day, they would not have any skin left.  Plus who has the energy to bathe a baby that often.  Those first few months I want them sleeping and eating, not bathing.  Plus my kids get so cold after a bath.  Nope.  (We still had bottles of baby bath from my baby shower (8years ago) when I clean out the bathroom this summer to paint.  I threw those away, they were 5 years out of date.)

iamnameless
by on Oct. 9, 2013 at 11:14 AM
1 mom liked this
My kids all get a bath everyday even as newborns. Babies do sweat if they get hot. They spit up or drip milk down their chins. And sometimes they have stink left after you clean the poopy butt with wipes. Once they start crawling even if your floors are clean they are still crawling on the floor. Once they start eating they get food everywhere and it is often easier to just pop them in the bath. Also if you bathe them daily in the evening it can help establish a bedtime schedule. And you can lather them in lotion to prevent dry skin. Also my babies all had hair that looked nasty if it wasn't washed daily.
KelliansMom
by on Oct. 9, 2013 at 11:15 AM
The bath was calming for my son still is four years later. We don't use soap every bath but he does get one pretty much every day since he was little
kelliamber006
by on Oct. 9, 2013 at 11:48 AM

my kids are 3 and 6 and they get a bath every other day (unless they are dirty, smell, etc)

my newborn def wont be getting a bath every day!

it will just dry out their skin and even their hair which needs those oils our body makes!

Rockabella
by Bronze Member on Oct. 9, 2013 at 11:51 AM
This.

My has eczema so we just do a bath every other day not daily


Quoting bebcarroll:

Oh, gosh my kids all have eczema, if I bathed them every day, they would not have any skin left.  Plus who has the energy to bathe a baby that often.  Those first few months I want them sleeping and eating, not bathing.  Plus my kids get so cold after a bath.  Nope.  (We still had bottles of baby bath from my baby shower (8years ago) when I clean out the bathroom this summer to paint.  I threw those away, they were 5 years out of date.)


mfk3
by on Oct. 9, 2013 at 12:20 PM
As a new born 2-3 times a week...

Now that he is two its everyother day
krusesbaby
by Silver Member on Oct. 9, 2013 at 1:35 PM

 I thought you were only supposed to bathe newborns like every 3 days so their skin doesnt dry out?

now my 4yo and almost 2yo bathe everynight. dont wash hair everynight but do bathe

bamamommy2009
by on Oct. 9, 2013 at 2:00 PM

 i didnt batht he newborn everyday- i would take a cloth and wipe mykids down so that their skin would not dry out, and both of mine where fall babies so i didnt want them to get cool too much- now my kids are 4  and 2 they gets baths every night, but washes hair every other night.

Devious103102
by on Oct. 9, 2013 at 2:52 PM

My oldest 3 daughters shower daily. DD4 (18 months) gets a bath every other night since we're home most of the time anyway, unless we have something particularly messy with dinner then she'll get a bath whatever night that is and now that Dom's cord fell off (he's 12 days old) he'll get his first bath this weekend and he'll probably only get bathed every 2-3 days unless he gets super messy (diaper blow out) till he gets a bit bigger. 

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