Always keep the following tips in mind while bathing your newborn:
• Never leave your baby unsupervised, even for a minute. If the doorbell or phone rings and you feel you must answer it, scoop him up in a towel and take him with you. A child can drown in less than an inch of water — and in less than 60 seconds.
• Choose a time when you baby is awake. Schedule a bath for mid morning before a feed. Never bathe a baby after a meal as he may be uncomfortable and may throw up. You could also choose a late evening bath but remember to keep your baby warm and tuck him to bed as soon as you can to avoid exposure to cold.
• Make sure the room is comfortable and warm especially in winter. In summer, ensure that you turn off the fan/cooler/AC and shut the door and windows to prevent any wind drafts.
• Give your baby a gentle massage. Avoid using any massage oils especially in the first few weeks, as they may irritate your baby’s delicate skin.
• Wash your baby’s face and hair right at the end. Many babies get visibly upset when their face and hair are cleaned. If you clean his face and hair right at the end it will be easier to dry, dress and feed him immediately without having to worry about cleaning the rest of the body and it will also reduce the time he has to spend with wet hair.
• Pay attention to the neck area as sweat and excess milk tend to collect here. Clean between the fingers and toes where dirt tends to settle. Talcum powder and sweat may collect between the folds of the skin on thighs, inner elbow, neck and knees, so clean these areas carefully as well.
• Limit use of talcum powder. If you decide to use talcum powder choose a brand made specially for babies and use a powder puff or a piece of cloth to apply powder taking care to avoid his nasal area, mouth, eyes and genitals. Never dab powder directly from the container onto your baby.