Bathing your newborn baby can give you butterflies in your stomach, especially if it is your first born. In the beginning, you will find the baby fragile and slippery when wet, but you will eventually being to enjoy bathing your baby. A parent often fears for the safety of their baby if they do not know how to bathe a newborn baby. However, while it is intimidating in the first few weeks, soon you will find what is comfortable for you and the baby.
Sponge bathing a baby is advisable for the first few days until the umbilical stump falls off. This would take about 10 days. Use a moistened washcloth to wipe the baby clean. Place the baby on a soft cloth or towel to prevent the baby from slipping. Dip the cloth in warm water, squeeze off excess water, and wipe the baby's face, hands, and body clean. Take care to wipe the genital area clean as well. Also, make sure to clean behind the ears as the milk spit up by the baby may be still present. You can wipe the baby's bottom, hands, and legs every time you change the diaper. It is best to wipe the baby in a warm room as the baby is very sensitive when exposed.
Once the cord falls off, you can bathe the baby in water. Keep it brief when you begin; soon both you and the baby will begin to enjoy bathing time. Keep in mind that it may take the baby some time before it can get used to the idea of water baths. Use a small tub or the kitchen sink to wash the baby. Clean them well before you give a bath. Also, try not to undress the baby until all you need is ready. You will need plastic bathing tub or sink, warm water (always check to see if the water is too hot or cold for the baby), mild soap, shampoo, washcloth or sponge, small cup for scooping water, and baby towels. Initially, fill the tub or sink with just 2 to 3 inches of water. Hold the baby's head in your left hand and wash the baby top to bottom, front to back with a soapy washcloth or sponge. Rinse the baby once or twice to clean it. Make sure to clean every area without leaving any soap traces. If you shampoo the hair, try to close the baby's ears by placing your thumb and little finger on the ears to prevent water from getting in. Tilt the baby's head slightly backward so that the shampoo does not sting the baby's eyes. Once you are done, wrap the baby in a towel and wipe the baby completely dry.