A step-by-step guide on how to sponge bathe a newborn
How to Sponge Bathe a Newborn
It can be a bit challenging to give your newborn baby a sponge bathe, especially if you are a new mom. In fact, it’s a bit scary, and we’re afraid to make mistakes. But here’s the thing that you should remember, giving your baby a sponge bath isn’t as difficult as you think. You need a step by step guide to follow, and that’s exactly what I’m going to provide in this section.
How is important sponge bathing for babies?
For the several weeks after birth, newborn babies need sponge baths since it helps them to get clean. The umbilical cord stump will not heal when it gets wet. So, it’s very important to take note never to wet their umbilical cord stump while sponge bathing. It naturally takes time before the cord stump falls off and heals.
It is very accurate that you need to be extremely careful when it comes to handling your baby. Due to their naturally fragile nature and small size, giving him his first bath can be a bit tricky. You do not only have to keep your baby comfortable and calm, but you also have to make sure to keep some of this part dry.
Here’s the most important tip before giving your baby a sponge bath, be prepared and take your time. When you know exactly what to do, sponge bathing will go smoothly. Preparation goes beyond studying what to do, but actually to gather the supplies ahead of time. You must carefully clean your baby and take note of the temperatures of the water.
Step by step guide on sponge bathing your baby:
Before proceeding to the very first step, always make sure you have thoroughly washed your hands clean. It’s important that your hands are germ-free, so your baby will be 100% safe and protected from possible infections.
Step 1: The very first thing you need to do to perform the sunbathing safely is to gather all the supplied before you begin. Things you need to prepare:
- Mild baby soap
- Clean Diaper
- Clean Clothes
- Cotton Balls
- Two Washcloths
Note: Never take off your hands off your baby while you are on the process of sponge bathing him.
Step 2: The next step is filling the sink or a small bowl with lukewarm water.
Step 3: Undress your baby and wrap him in a towel. It is normal if your baby starts to cry or any reaction that he might make since babies tend to feel insecure and uncomfortable when they are naked and when they feel cold. It’s important that you must always hold your baby carefully and never let go of him even for a second.
Note that every baby is different from one another. Some babies freak out, and some don’t. If ever your baby’s reactions persist, only expose one section of the skin one at a time.
Step 4: The next step is dipping the cotton ball into the water and with a gentle force, wipe your baby’s eyes, then dab the cotton from the bridge of his nose to the tip. Always keep in mind to use a fresh ball for each eye.
Step 5: The next step is lightly soaping the washcloth while keeping your other hand holding your baby. Make sure that you do not completely soak the washcloth since that would produce many drips. As much as possible damp the soaped washcloth with water.
Step 6: With the use of the damp cloth, wipe his face gently and the outer parts of his ear. Then wash his neck. Just work your way down the front of your baby’s body. Also, clean the between folds of your baby’s skin.
Step 7: With the use of the second damp cloth (not lightly soaped), rinse the soap off.
Step 8: Use the towel in drying your baby. It’s important that before flipping your baby to clean his back, he is dry to avoid your slipping accidents.
Note: Never wash the umbilical stump. Make sure to keep it dry.
Step 9: The next step is cleaning your baby’s back. Carefully flip your baby over onto his belly with his head turned to one side. Repeat the three sponge bathing process which is: washing, rinsing, and drying.
Step 10: Cleaning his bottom and genitals comes last. If your baby is a boy and has not circumcised, never try to push back his foreskin.
Step 11: With the use of the towel, pat your baby dry and get the clean diaper and dress him in clean clothes.
Note: You will only be needing to perform sponge bathing to your baby until his umbilical cord stump falls off and heals. This takes 3-4 weeks; then you can move on bathing him in his cute baby tub.
Top 5 best tips for first-time moms on How To Bathe a Newborn baby
As the saying goes, “there’s always a first in everything”. For first-time moms, bathing sessions can be thrilling, tricky, and challenging. So, it’s important that you know some of these tips so that bathing sessions will be much easier for you. On the other section, you have learned about the step by step guide on how to sponge bath your newborn baby.
Yes, before you can take your baby to regular bathtubs, you still need to perform sponge bathing for the first 3-4 weeks until his umbilical cord stump finally falls off and completely heals. Here are some of the tips that you should know aside from knowing the step-by-step guide on how to perform sponge bathing.
Tip #1: Create a routine that your baby can easily predict
Your newborn baby will love routinary things; if it’s not in their routine, they might feel insecure and uncomfortable. So, by performing the sponge bathing at the same time will help you make future baths a whole lot easier. Make sure that you choose a specific time of the day where you perform the sponge bathing. For instance, you can do it at night and at the same time.
By creating a routine, your baby will have a sense of stability and predictability. Consider whether you feed your baby before or after his or her bath time.
Tip #2: Find a room with a flat surface
It’s also important that you bath your baby in the same place. This will help your baby to feel secure and comfy when you perform future baths. The best place to give your baby a sponge bath is either in your bathroom or in the kitchen.
Another tip that you should keep in mind is to put a pad or a towel so that your baby will not be directly lying or resting on the hard floor. Your baby has a fragile nature, so never take your hand away from him throughout the sponge bathing process.
You will also need a flat surface where you can put your supplies and the materials you’re going to use.
Tip #3: Find a room that is warm
Due to your baby’s small size and fragile state, you will have to make sure that the room is warm before you get your newborn baby wet. The ideal temperature is between 75° to 80° F (24° to 27° C. Some newborn babies freak out when they get undressed since they feel cold, so make sure that the room is warm enough to calm your baby.
Tip #4: Turn on some soothing music
In sponge bathing your baby, you are not only making sure that he gets cleaned well, but you also have to soothe to calm your baby during the sponge bathing process. You can praise your newborn baby that they’re doing good while holding their tiny hands. This is to make sure that the bathing process is introduced well to your baby and will not be a traumatic experience for your infant.
You can also turn on some soothing music to calm your baby. Any relaxing thing you can do so the first bathing process will not be a traumatic experience for your infant.
Tip #5: Don’t bathe your baby too frequently
Newborn’s skin is very sensitive and delicate, so excessive bathing could make possible dry your baby’s skin out and even worse, irritate it. You only need to bathe your baby around 3-4 times a week, with major exceptions. For example, if your baby had a massive diaper blow-out, it might be a necessity to wash him clean.