How To Prepare For Your Baby's First Bath?

Dr Pooja AttreyPT
0 to 1 years

Created by Dr. Pooja Attrey(PT)
Updated on Aug 23, 2017

How To Prepare For Your Babys First Bath

Most new mothers may feel a little concerned about bathing their new born for the first time. Bathing your baby is a marvellous experience for you well as for your child. The bubbles and giggles, washing, splashing, and those adorable baby gurgling sounds —bath time is a perfect moment in your day to engage your baby's senses and nurture your bond.

When To Give Your Baby The First Full Bath?

Doctors usually recommend giving your newborn a bath on the first day itself but it is best you wait till the cord sheds off. Until then; a sponge bath might be a better idea. Once the cord is shed and healed, it is time to give your baby their first full bath.

Do I Need To Give Bath Daily To My Newborn?

Unlike adults, new babies do not necessarily need daily bath. Once or twice a week is more than enough until your baby starts crawling and getting dirtier. You should be particular about cleaning your baby's private partsduring each nappy/diaper change. Cleaning your baby's face with a wet cotton ball would be enough to maintain basic hygiene.

How To Prepare For Your Baby's First Full Bath?

Accessories Needed For Your Baby's First Full Bath

  1. Baby bath tub/clean sink
  2. Soft towel
  3. Wash cloth
  4. Herbal baby soap/cleanser
  5. Baby shampoo
  6. Clean nappy
  7. Baby oil and powder
  8. Baby cream/lotion
  9. A set of clean clothes

Parentune Tip: Be careful to keep the first five items within easy reach at your baby's bathing place and the last few items in the dressingarea, say his/her room.

How To Prepare The Bath Water For Your Baby?

What is the rocket science in preparing the bath water with an optimum temperature for your baby. Hence you need to be careful about below mentioned 5 things like

  1. Never use water that is too cold or too hot to bathe your baby in
  2. In summer, normal tap water at room temprature can be used
  3. In winters a little warm water; 32 : 37degree Celsius can be used
  4. Fill the bath tub up to one third of its depth
  5. Keep a bucket filled with water that is the same temperature near you

What Steps To Follow While Giving Your Baby A Bath?

Bathing a baby is not an easy task. If you ask any new mom they will tell you all about the daunting experience they have while bathing their baby. But with these 6 easy steps you and your baby will enjoy the bath time much more with loads of bonding over the soapy water.

Parentune Tip: Remember never to put water on their head first


  1. Undressing: Undress your baby completely in a comfortable room and wrap him/her in a soft towel and bring them to the bathing area. Soothe your baby a little; help them relax so they enjoy their bath.You could sing or use colourful toys like a rubber duck or ball
  2. Gently easing your baby into the water: Holding your baby firmly, with one hand under their head and neck, and the other one under theirback, slowly slide him/her into the tub (1/4 of tubs capacity)– feet first. After their feet enter the water, slowly slide him/her in a little more up to their thighs and let his/herbody get accustomed to the water
  3. Pour the water slowly on your baby: Then slowly pour some water on their tummy, chest, arms and shoulders. Next, wash his/her face with a water soaked cotton ball and lastly pour water on your baby'shead. After that you may pour a little water using a mug from the bucket you had kept aside
  4. Using shampoo & body wash: Use shampoo and body wash on alternate days. Daily use might dry out your baby's body moisture leaving him/her itchy and scaly. Use a mild baby cleanser and rub gently on his/her body. Clean under his/her neck,arms,knees and private parts properly. While shampooing, use front to backward strokes whilerubbing lightly on their scalp. Also wash off the shampoo in abackward direction only. Rinse your baby's body with clean water thoroughly
  5. After bathing: Wrap your baby in a soft towel and bring him/her to the dressing area. After patting them dry, apply baby oil or moisturizer to his/herbody. Also apply a little oil on theiranus and genitals. You can use baby powder on areas like under their neck,arms, knees and genital creases. Dry his/her hair and apply a little oil
  6. Dress: Now dress up your baby in clean clothes that are well suited to the season

What Are The Baby Bathing DO's To Remember?

Remember these 7 baby bathing do's while bathing your baby for the first time.

  1. Keep all bathing items ready, withineasy reach in the bathroom and dressing items ready in the dressing area
  2. Check water temperature twice either on the back of your hand or the inside of your wrist
  3. Also keep one spare bucket filled with bath water nearthe bath tub
  4. Grip your baby firmly while bathing
  5. If bathing after massage, keep at least 30-40 minutes time gap
  6. It is advised to use a plastic bath tub to minimize risk of injury and perhaps a soft plastic shower cap for your baby
  7. Watch out for extreme temprature variations for example after bathing never let yourbaby be exposed to direct fast air of fans,coolers or AC's. In winter, try to bathe and dress baby in a closed room and let him/her stay there for at least 15:20 minutes, so that his/her body temperature may adjust to the environmental temperature

What Are The Baby Bathing DON'Ts To Remember?

Remember these 6 baby bathing don'ts while bathing your baby for the first time.

  1. Never ever leave your baby unattended during bathing, up to 4-5 years of age
  2. The bath water must not be too cold or too hot
  3. Never put water on their head at the start of their bath. Start from their feet and progress upwards slowly
  4. Infants up to 6 months don't require daily baths. You may skip a day or two but just stick to their basic diaper cleaning and face, hands cleaning ritual
  5. Before choosing toiletries for your baby, always check for allergies first
  6. Extreme temperature variation before, during and after their bath must be avoided to avoid baby catching a cold

Enjoy this special time with your baby. Ultimately s/he will be grown up enough to do it all by himself/herself. Till then make some memories mommies and share the giggles!

Did you find Pooja's tips on bathing your new-born useful? How did/do you bathe your new-born? Do leave your comments…. We love hearing from you!

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| Aug 29, 2017

hi Pranita. .A very good point u have raised here.. what u are sayung is true and also let me add some things along.. first the list of things to be used guven here is as general as it could be. child to child use and need of toiletries differ! second true APA has given info about powder use in babies,but than again the basis for that is climatic. also humidity plays a role. for 24 hrs diaper babies.. powder around genitals not recommended which is usually the case with american babies and now a days babies in metro cities. Also powder application doesnt mean u put it there n forget it till next bath... it might be cleaned n put again time to time if required so . it implies that the creases areas must be kept dry by applying telcom. thirdly,the baby powders are specifically designed so as not to cause any ingestion or otherwise injury but still it is strongly recommended to NEVER sprinkle telcom on babies... u must take small amounts powder in ur hands and spread it evenly and than apply to babys body. and last... even with all the precautions,again everything.. as little as these basic things.. differ from kid to kid.. read babys body signs and check for any reaction to every baby product before u choose it for ur little one! even for my son,i could never use any product other than ubtan and coconut oil as nothung suited him!

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| Aug 24, 2017

useful info

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| Aug 24, 2017

As advised by my pediatrician, powder must not be used on infants at all. Strictly not on the genital creases as powder absorbs urine... which again stays on skin for a very long time.. causing an infection. powder applied on the neck could be inhaled by the baby.. causing respiratory problems. Please refer to American Academy of Pediatrics for any clarification The American Academy of Pediatrics points out that baby powder can cause breathing trouble and serious lung damage for babies if they inhale the particles. (And it's hard to keep powder out of the air when you're using it. ) This is especially true of talc-based powders, with their small, easily inhaled particles.

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| Aug 24, 2017

thanks for this wonderful information

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