Caring For Your Baby

A new baby brings joy but also challenges to daily life. We are here to help and make sure you feel confident caring for your baby when you leave the hospital as well as in the weeks, months and years to follow.

Bathing

Baby girl in bathtub laughing at mother

Bathing your baby is a lot of fun, but if you’re a new mom you’ll want to make sure you wash their fragile bodies properly, and without causing harm. A sponge bath is all your baby needs until the cord comes off. If your baby is circumcised, you will need to continue a sponge bath until the penis has healed.

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Bathing Advice

Basic Things Needed for Bathing

  • Baby tub or dish tub and warm water (90 to 100 degrees).
  • Soft wash cloth (two to three).
  • Plastic cup for rinsing.
  • Gentle non-tearing baby soap, unscented.
  • Two soft baby towels or two large towels.
  • Diaper.
  • Clothing.

Steps for the bath

  1. Lay your baby down on a soft towel.
  2. Remove your baby’s clothing.
  3. Wipe your baby’s eyes with a washcloth and plain warm water. Wipe from the inner corner of the eye to the outer corner. Use a clean part of the wash cloth when you wash the other eye the same way.
  4. Wash your baby’s face, the outer part of the nose and the ears with the tip of the washcloth. Never stick a cotton swab in the nose or the ear as this can hurt your baby.
  5. Pick up your baby supporting the head and neck. Be careful if your baby is wet, he or she will be slippery. Wash your baby’s head using a soft brush or wash cloth. Rinse the head well with warm water.
  6. Clean around the umbilical cord with soap and water.
  7. While supporting your baby’s head and neck, wash the arms, the legs and then the belly. Be sure to wash the creases well around your baby’s neck, belly and between the fingers and toes. Wash your baby’s back. Take off the diaper and wash from front to back. Pat dry well and diaper your baby. Be careful; at times a baby will urinate on you during a bath or diaper change.

If you have any other questions about washing your baby, ask your nurse who will be happy to give you all the guidance you need.