Bathing Your Baby: Bathing Safety Checklist

• Prior to baby's bath, have bathing supplies, clothes and towels already assembled, and keep the phone within arm's reach.

• Never leave the room for any reason while giving your baby a bath.

• Realize that the first few baths will be challenging, but they will get easier!

• When bathing baby, keep the room warm and draft-free.

• Make sure your hot water heater is set lower than 120 degrees. Always test bathwater temperature on the inside of your wrist.

• Newborns need to be bathed only every three days or so.

• Until the circumcision is healed and the umbilical cord falls off, newborns should be given only sponge baths.

• If the cord gets wet by mistake, dab rubbing alcohol on it after the bath.

• For small babies, use a towel in the bottom of the sink or tub so he or she doesn't slip.

• Avoid strong soaps and shampoos made for adults.

• Never use soap products on baby's face.

• Place a washcloth that's been wetted with warm water over baby's stomach to keep him warm.

• Always start with the face and end with the hair. A great deal of body heat is lost through the head so this area should be saved for last.

• Wash baby's bottom from front to back.

• Don't use Q-tips when washing a baby. Sudden movements could cause accidents.

• Don't clean the insides of baby's ears.

• Babies don't like their faces covered, so use a washcloth to clean one area of the face at a time.

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