Your Newborn’s First Bath: Tips and Timing

January 5, 2024

Your Newborn’s First Bath: Tips and Timing

The first bath is a special milestone in your newborn’s life and a new experience for you as a parent. It’s a time for gentle splashes and soothing cuddles. Our team at Childhealthy is here to guide you through when and how to make this moment as safe and joyful as possible.


When to give the first bath: It’s best to wait at least 24 hours after your baby is born before bathing them for the first time. This helps to protect their skin and prevent infection. There is no rush however and it is also fine to wait a few days before the first bath.

Frequency of bathing: A newborn’s bathing needs are minimal-two to three times a week is generally enough. Their delicate skin can dry out if bathed too frequently. As they grow and become more active, you’ll naturally find the right balance.

Preparing for the bath: Make sure the room is warm and the bath water is comfortably warm at around 37°C. A calm environment sets the stage for a soothing bath. Always do check the water temperature with your elbow or arm, if it feels too hot…it is too hot!

The bathing process: For the initial baths, a sponge bath is recommended until the umbilical cord stump falls off. Support your baby’s head and gently introduce them to the water, ensuring they feel secure throughout.

Post-bath care: After bathing, rinse your baby with care, wrap them in a warm towel, and pat them dry. If their skin needs it, a dab of baby moisturiser can be comforting.

Top 5 bathing tips from Childhealthy:

  1. Delay the first bath to allow your baby’s natural skin protection to work.
  2. Use a lined sink or baby bathtub for comfort and safety.
  3. Test water temperature with your elbow to ensure it’s just right.
  4. Keep baths brief, with all essentials within reach.
  5. Never leave your baby unattended in the bath.


Disclaimer: Information contained in this article is intended as general advice and does not replace a medical assessment. If you are concerned about your child, please contact your doctor for advice.


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