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Wednesday, July 11, 2007

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We didn't mess with a baby bathtub, but did buy the inexpensive sponge inserts you can get for the baby bathtubs--they're a few inches thick with a sort of depression in the middle to fit the baby. We used these in the regular tub and it was great. Babies had a comfy spongy place to lie, they didn't slip around, their ears didn't get in the water, we kept pouring warm water over them (sometimes w/ a washcloth on the tummy for extra warmth/coverage) and all three of them loved the baths. We bathed them about every other day.

My friend bathed her little guy as a soothing method. He loved the water and would instantly calm in the water. She started giving him a bath every night and he knew that right before bed time he would get a bath. By the time he was mobile, he would crawl into the bathroom and try to undress himself. He just turned 5 and still wants a bath every night. He will take 2 or 3 a day if he can. He's not such a fan of the swimming pool but don't take the boy's baths away!

My daughter likes baths, but I hate to give them! I feel a bit like a freak, but giving my daughter a bath is literally my least favorite aspect of motherhood so far. I long to be able to foist that duty off on my husband, and I've lightly hinted at it, but he's not going for it.

When she was a newborn, we bathed her once a week. Since then it's been twice a week, which is enough to keep her clean and infrequently enough that I don't suffer too much. The thought of giving her a bath every day makes me twitch.

Well, I'm with you--my daughter is five months old, and she gets a bath twice, maaaybe three times a week if it's been a messy week. She likes bathtime fine, especially now that she's figured out how to splash (she thinks it's hilarious to send a tsunami of soapy water all over Mommy), but I guess we're just lazy, and she doesn't get all that dirty. Plus, she was born in February, and between the winter air and indoor heating, her skin was already dry and I didn't want to make it worse with constant bathing.

I do take a wet washcloth and wipe her face, ears, neck folds, and hands every night before bed, at the suggestion of my post-partum doula, and I think that takes care of most of the messiness. Now that she's started solids I suppose she'll get dirtier, though; I might have to step up the baths a bit.

Delurking to comment that we do bathe our one year old nearly every day because he plays very hard, and gets really sweaty, especially in the heat of the last few days. That said, prior to it getting warm outside, we bathed him probably every other day as part of his bedtime routine. He loves the water though, and cries when we take him out of the tub. If he had been more persnickety about it, we probably would have bathed him less often, since it can be drying for their skin, but we also made a baby lotion massage part of the routing, until he wouldn't lay still for that. Also, until he was big enough to stand up, we bathed him in the kitchen sink. It worked well, mostly because I didn't have to bend over or kneel down like I have to when he is in the big tub.

Routine, not routing.

We've bathed Daniel pretty much every other day or so since he was born, but we cheated and didn't do sponge baths - instead we put him in the baby tub (where he could lean against a padded surface) and put a very low level of water in it which didn't actually reach his umbilical cord, then wiped him down with a washcloth. It helps that he's always loved water (he loved his baptism - he got the enormous smile on his face which showed that he anticipated a bath) and really enjoyed having water poured over his hair to rinse it.

As for why we were so stringent about baths in the beginning, I think a lot of it is due to the fact that Daniel was born and spent his first few months in extremely hot weather. Add to that the newborn tendency to dribble milk down into his little neck folds where it would rapidly solidify into something very smelly, and yeah, he was getting bathed. If he didn't, he would soon start to smell extremely sour.

Actually, folks might think I'm gross but, though she doesn't mind baths terribly much, Bronwyn has only had four official baths in her short life.

It is actually not good for baby's skin to bathe them too much and once a week is more than adequate before they are mobile and moving around on the floor--we actually use baby oil and sponge baths most of the time.

As part of her night time ritual we sponge her down with a damp cloth and then apply Aquaphor.

So I'm not terribly horrified by your confession and I am very happy for Milla's beautiful skin!

My son has always liked the bath, and now that he is two, we can get away with asking him if he wants to go "swimming" in the bath! He really loves the water! We rarely used the infant tub when he was an infant, instead, my husband or I would get in the tub with him. We did this arrangement as soon as the cord fell off pretty much. We did the same with my daughter, but she still hated the bath, and to this day, does not care for the water much. We don't bath our kids everyday, but approximately 2 to three times a week, sometimes less, sometimes more. At my kids ages (Dominic 2, Stella 1), they tend to get dirtier throughout the day, due to playing outside, sunscreen, lake water, food, etc! For Stella, who hates baths, we grit our teeth and try to make it as quick, yet, efficient of a bath as possible!

Gui had his first bath the day he was born - my mother-in-law filled our baby tub with herbs (recommended by the midwives) and warm water, and bathed him beside the bed where I was. He screamed. He screamed for the next bath too, a few days later. But finally we figured out what the problem was - everybody was so careful making the water only luke-warm, and it was March in Michigan, so the water actually got cool pretty fast. It turned out that he loved moderately hot baths, so that's what we gave him, and he stopped complaining.

(His umbilical cord stump fell off in a week, btw. On days that he didn't have a bath we wiped around it with a bit of the herb water and it got a little yucky then dropped off - no redness, no infection.)

For the first year, we bathed him about twice a week, and wiped him down outside of that. Since he's been mobile and playing outside more, he gets a lot more baths. :-)

Our newborn gets a bath about twice a week. I also use the towel in the bathtub.

The hospital here gives babies a bath in a tub full of water right after birth. They tell the parents to give babies regular baths because it's been shown that the cord getting wet and then drying out actually has the same effect as alcohol and dries it out quicker.

We did the towel in the bathroom sink and/or sponge bath for the first two months. He hated it. Then we discovered, entirely by accident, that he LOVED showers. So from two months to five and a half months he got showers when he was dirty. Then he got chicken pox, and we took him in the tub with us and some oatmeal for itch relief. And he loved the tub, so we've taken baths with him ever since! It is nightly, but more for the ritual and routine. Well, and also because he is a total boy and gets remarkably filthy.

my son got a bath every night before bed from newborn until about 1 year as part of his bedtime routine. Same thing for the next year except that he started getting a shower with Daddy on Saturday morning so no bath saturday evening, just a wipe down. Now he's 2 and a half and he gets a bath every other day and a wipe down on the other days. If he gets dirty or really sweaty then he gets a bath.

I really wanted Jackson to have a bath as part of his nighttime routine, but we get around to it maybe twice a week (three times if he's lucky!) and that's because we're LAZY. I KNOW. I'm ashamed of me too. He doesn't especially love his bath (in a baby tub in the kitchen sink) but he tolerates it and getting him dressed afterwards is fun. But by the time P gets home from work and we both debrief our days and get something to eat, we're exhausted. And if the timing isn't right for Jack, we scratch it. Sigh. Just telling myself that ONE of these days we'll get on a schedule...

I can't remember how often we bathed baby when he was an infant, but he never really liked it, either. HATED having the water poured over his head, even when I was careful. Sigh.

Once he started in daycare I started the every-other-night bath, I think. Just wanted to wash the daycare "vibe" off as much as felt acceptable ...germophobe tendancies, perhaps. :)

He is now 3 years, and still fights me on taking a bath (!) but once he gets in he has a blast. Can't convince him to try a shower yet.

We were home from the hospital for a week before we decided to brave bathing the baby. Then she SCREAMED. It was awful. So until her cord stump fell off, we bathed her as little as possible. Once should could be partially submerged, that was a little better. Then we figured out that if we covered the parts of her that were exposed with a warm wet washcloth then she was more comfortable. By the time she was 8 weeks old she loved the bath (even if she wasn't covered) and I was bathing her every morning because we both enjoyed it. But it dries her out too much and she gets eczema, so now I only to it every 3 days or so. I know she's not even really dirty, but it's just so fun to play in the water with her.

My son's umbilical cord took forever to fall off too. In fact, we had to take him to the doctor so they could cauterize it (or something. It was gross.). Anyway, after that we started bathing him daily. He always liked it, so there was never an issue. We just worked it into the bedtime routine, and since he is very routine-oriented he was happy about it. He's almost 5 now and still enjoys his bath immensely, but does hate having his hair washed so I do that as rarely as possible. But when he comes home from preschool he is just so...smelly. And filthy. Yuck.

Oh, Arwen. We could be friends in the bathtub society. I bathe my children when they stink. That's it. They have gone a week before. :)

As long as I can sniff their little heads and not smell something vile, we are good.

I know alot of people who bathe their children every night - I think one reason is part of the bedtime routine. I would think it would be really hard on the skin, but what do I know?

Also, when you don't bathe them every day, when you DO, the smell of their little heads is a delight! :)

I'm reading "Evangelical is not Enough" and love it! I'm on page 35. It's been ab it of a slow read as I have to take it in chunks. Lots to take in?! Thank you so much for sending those!!!!!!

My first always bathed with me, usually every other day. With my second we used the sponge insert in the sink or on a sling thing in the big bathtub while her sister was bathing, usually every 2 or 3 days. When she could sit up we used one of those ring seats that suction to the bottom of the tub.

I have to coerce my girls into the tub, but then I can't get them out! They'd like to stay in all night! Right now I just feel guilty waiting a few days because they're in chlorinated swimming pools slathered in sunscreen most days and I like to gt it washed off! Not to mention the long hair with food in it...yuck!

When my baby was a newborn, he got a spongebath about every other day. It was mostly because it took all of my mental and physical energy for him to eat and sleep and be changed and ME eat and sleep and be changed, all in one day. I remember thinking, "I have to cut his nails TOO? What's next? How am I ever supposed to get everything done?" I have always sponge-bathed him on the counter in the bathroom. He cried as a newborn, but we both soon learned that singing soothed him. So I sang our way through bathtime and he was fine. He gets a bath every morning now. It's because I don't like sticky babies, is all, and we live in the South, so it's impossible to go 24 hours without breaking a sweat.

The only unusual thing about our bathtime is that he's never done well with baths at night. Being bathed wakes him up more than it relaxes him, so he usually gets a bath at the start of our day. And I tried the baby tubs, but they scared me when he was an infant. By now he's old enough for me to sit in the kitchen sink, but the bathroom counter is still our habit for now ...

I cheat sometimes when I'm really tired, but try to bathe them every night(although I've consdired bathing them less). My babies go to daycare and sometimes visit relatives who aren't too clean. One has reflux and the other is learning to eat and makes a big mess, so I guess I fall in the really messy baby category.

Hi Arwen. I always meant to send an e-mail before I ever commented, so that I could expound upon how, even though you are slightly younger than I am, I want to be you when I grow up.

However, for the health and safety of the cutest baby ever to hate a bath, I felt I had to comment.

This has happened to two people I know recently. Both their babies hated baths. In fact one, -my cousin's baby- hated baths so much that it nearly threw my cousin into a bad post-partum funk because she was SURE she must be doing something hideously wrong for the baby to get SO upset during bathtime.

Anyway, both of them eventually tried taking baths WITH their babies, and both babies liked it. However, both babies also got what looked like terrible diaper rashes. One baby had it so bad that the rash actually bled and the poor thing was in agony. She tried so many diaper rash creams- even prescription topicals...and it seemed to get worse and make the baby more miserable with each application. My cousin actually changed pediatricians over the frustration and lack of progress, and good thing she did-- the "diaper rashes" were actually yeast infections. Every single application of super-strength diaper rash cream was actually burning this poor little angel's tiny caboose. The new doctor told her that sharing a bath was very likely what had caused these yeast infections, especially as they'd never occurred before the baby's fourth month- in other words, exactly the time she started bathing with the baby.
It turns out that little baby nether-regions are sooo incredibly sensitive to yeast, babies being the little heat-slash-moisture conductors that they are. Unfortunately, bathing with your baby (especially baby girls, whose southern states are more vulnerable for obvious anatomy reasons) increases the chance of these yeast infections something like forty zillion fold. No, really...I forget the actual statistic...but being that I've heard of several people that it happened to over the last few years and I know two people that it happened to over the last few months...I thought it merited mentioning.

Don't get me wrong...I want there to be no discernible cloud of Pigpen-like dirt hovering over Camilla as much as the next gal...but I wanted to make you aware of this risk if you weren't already.

During my training as a breastfeeding educator and lactation consultant, I remember hearing about various natural and/or herbal additives you can put in the bath to protect the baby against yeasts, so it's not that you "shouldn't" bathe with a baby, it's just that you might want to consider treating the water with some of these herbal properties just to hedge your bets. According to my cousin, her baby's doctor also recommended several topical preparations that go on the baby before or after a bath and these are supposed to get rid of any possible "bad" yeast. (because the body maintains a certain balance of "good" yeast, of course...it's kinda like cholesterol, when you think about it) Also, my cousin found that (in her words) "powdering the snot out of that little worm" several times per day helps with post-bath moisture AND helps to absorb dirt and stuff, so she ends up needing fewer baths altogether.

Your mom sounds like the kind of person who might know something about this (since she does in fact seem to know something about everything in the world, that fabulous lady) so perhaps you could inquire to her, or ask C-dawg's pediatrician.

I salute you for being absolutely remarkable in every possible way,
Liz


Neither of my kids had anything more than a weekly bath until they were old enough to sit up on their own. After that age (which is, what, five months give or take?) both my kids sat underneath me while I showered and "bathed" in my dirty shampoo water. When I'm done with my own self, I drain the tub, soap up the kids and hose them off with the shower head. Every one is clean and nobody screams.

It may seem gross, but I think my method (which doesn't involve me ever sitting in the tub with the kids) probably also gets around the yeast thing.

We did every other day for Tori for months and months, but now? Now that she crawls/walks/eats dirt? Every night we hose her down. But she's always liked baths.

Perhaps you could try a shower? I have a friend who would take her baby in the shower, wash him off, and then hand him out to her hubby who would dry and dress him. Ya never know!

Wow, my oldest's cord fell off on Day four, while we were dressing him to go home!!! So, we were able to put him in a baby bath tub (on the dining room table of all places) right away. I recall as a newborn I had the best results when I put him in the tub wrapped in one of those thin baby towels and then cleaned him by opening just a bit of the towel at a time. (And at 8 yrs + it's getting hard to remember those early days!)

I've got one child with excema, so daily baths were out of the question. We started with the twins about every third day or so, but once they got old enough to enjoy it, we went to every other. My little one hates baths and would skip them every time if at all possible. She doesn't mind the playing portion of the bath, it's the washing she hates. I usually bathe all 3 girls together and let them play for a few minutes, then do the business end of stuff and out they go. We do this every other day or so - with the little one skipping a night here and there. I'm sure Camilla doesn't smell badly enough to warrant baths anymore frequently than she's getting them.

So why is it that you're not supposed to bathe the baby until the umbilical stump falls off? Here in Japan they have you immersing the baby straightaway - we got a lesson in the clinic before we went home. Chloe absolutely abhorred being sink-bathed and screamed the whole way through, though she did a little better for my husband. (I think his larger hands made her feel more secure.) I bathed her only when my he came home and said, "She STINKS! When was the last time you gave her a bath??" which engendered some good conversations on the division of parental responsibilities, but that's another story. She was very rarely bathed in her first few months.

Anyway, the "together" bath is extremely common here, so when she was just shy of three months old we started bathing her in the big tub with us. She's loved it from day one and gets bathed probably two or three times a week, with me, in the morning.

Good to know about the yeast risks, by the way - though we haven't had any issues, it's good to keep in mind. Wouldn't you have to have a yeast infection yourself in order to transmit it to the little one this way, though?

Thank you from a lurker. My baby (almost 6 months) hates baths, they are pure torture for everyone involved. I've tried calm and soothing and fun and splashy. We have also adapted to the OWAN schedule. I just made my husband promise not to tell about the 9 day bath strike.

As an aside, the little lovey weirdo loves the pool. Maybe it is because mommy is with him!

Wow. Compared to me, you're a good mom - I really wouldn't worry about the bathing thing. After reading all of the above comments, I wonder if anyone else out there didn't comment because they're like me.

Maybe it's because I had so many siblings (six) and was compelled to bathe them when they were young, but I've always hated giving children baths. Seriously. Of course, I've never been overly fond of baths myself - and even showers, except in the cold months, are something I try to "get through" as quickly as possible.

When my son was born, I gave him sponge baths for the first several months. And when we moved to the bathtub (we had the most awful well water ever, which is part of the reason I waited so long), he wasn't particularly cheery about it. He also had problems with horribly dry skin, which made me even more hesitant to bathe him too often. Eventually, he grew to like baths, but even now, at 2.5, he only gets a bath once a week. Of course, if he gets especially dirty, I wipe him down.

But if I were you, I wouldn't worry about her bathing routine - sounds just fine to me ;).

Total opposite at our house. The nightly bath was sacred. For some reason, probably his colic, the warm water was very soothing for him. We'd fill up his little "See Me" tub to the brim and let him soak. At 18-months the child still loves to bathe, but more for recreational purposes. :)

Delurking to comment. My husband and I were talking just last night about how often we should bathe our almost 4 month old... Right now we average about 3 baths a week. He thinks it should be less, I'd give her a bath every night, so we compromise. She in a leeky one, so we also wipe her down in the mornings and at night. My doctor said that we'd know when Claudia needed a bath, we'd smell her. So there is the medical perspective.

When Jack was a newborn, I sponge-bathed him every few days or so. Or once a week. Or something. I didn't really concern myself; how dirty can a newborn get, honestly? And he has sensitive skin, so I didn't want to dry it out. We switched to a sponge bath in the tub combined with pouring rinse water over him after his cord stump fell off, and that was fine until one day he was suddenly terrified of the tub and started screaming before I even set him down on his bathing seat thingy. So back to sponge baths we went. Once he could reliably sit on his own, we tried the tub again and he loved it, and still loves is now. We just set him in the full size tub on a non-slip mat and he has a grand ol' time in there. Now that it's summer, I find he needs baths every 2-3 days because he just plain gets dirtier. I think it's because he's beginning to self-feed while wearing less clothes, so the food grime gets all over his skin. Especially teething cookies. Those teething cookies are messy, man! And then he rubs his eyes and ears and it just gets everywhere. It's not part of the bedtime routine, though, because in the winter I expect to scale back the number of baths because of the dry air, so I don't want to have to give him one every night.

My son hated baths at first too. I think most of them do. We eventually had my husband get in the big tub with him while I did the bathing. He loved that. For awhile we bathed him every night, it was part of our routine before bed. But now we do it every other day and it's a good thing because he gets much dirtier since he's walking and into everything.

I have a question though....were you told by the doctor or hospital not to submerge her in water until the cord stump fell off? We were told it was perfectly fine to bath him directly in the water (even with the circumcision) and just to dry the areas well, no need to scrub at it. I've heard the "to submerge or not to submerge" is one of those things that can go either way.

After reading some more comments I thought I'd add that my son's cord fell off on day 7 while my husband changed his diaper. Freaked him out big time, I laughed! :) Maybe the water-submerged bathing has something to do with it falling off earlier like one commenter suggests?

Three times a week-no fail. Now that we have a very active almost two year old, it can be more. He is all boy, and plays so hard that I just can't handle it being longer than that. He lost his stump at four days, so we didn't sponge for very long. I had a baby tub that fit over the sink with a sling until he could sit up, and then we transitioned to a bigger baby tub until just recently, when we finally let him go in the regular tub. He's still not so crazy about getting into the big tub-lots of tears, but once he sits down, he's fine and proceeds to try to drown me with splashes. The big thing that we found with him as a newborn was that (1) he had allergy based eczema which really prohibited a lot of baths, and (2) other than during the warmer months, the dry air really didn't help that out too much. A bath has been a part of his bedtime routine for so long I think that he would miss it.

I bathed the girls pretty much every day, sometimes twice -- Claire was a really spitty baby, and not too particular about spitting up on her sister. I used the bathroom sink for about four months, then the kitchen sink.

They are ten months old, and we are still bathing them in the kitchen sink. They get at least one bath a day, and often two or even three, because they are such unbelievably messy eaters.

I think this is one of those places where the personality of the baby and parents makes a big difference. My son hated baths, and didn't get over it until he was no longer an infant. He got to the point where he didn't scream the whole way through, but it wasn't "fun" for him, so we didn't bother unless he was dirty. Since then, we've really been once-a-week bath people. Nowadays, he will even request or initiate a bath on his own when he is really dirty. When he was 3 or 4, I had a relative ask me what kind of shampoo I used on his hair--it was such a shiny golden blonde. I laughed it off, because the truth is that I almost NEVER wash his hair. Oh, the issues with hair washing!

I am with Jennifer about the skin. The nightly bath makes for a pleasant bedtime routine, but I think it's better for baby skins not to wash them constantly. In the US we have a hygeine fetish. To be completely honest, I don't even bath mySELF every day. (gasp) hehe. Okay, I've made myself a target for the cleanliness police, and will forever be remembered as the grungy commenter. And, oh, some people like to bathe with their babies. I tried it once or twice and hated it. Not only was the baby suddenly invading what previously was a relaxing place for me, but they have a habit of pooing in the tub. Yuck.

I also suspect that the rule about not bathing until the umbilical cord falls off is one of those little medical superstitions that is not really evidence-based. But it probably does no harm, either. Somewhere I read that alcohol actually prolongs the process of the cord falling off. We were not instructed to use anything on the cord. It came off at just under four weeks.

Ngaire has been showering with Daddy (or, more rarely, Mommy) since her cord fell off ... we don't have a bathtub, and the sink was full of dirty dishes on the night her cord fell off, so my husband was able to talk me into his showering-an-infant=OK idea. Now that she's a toddler--talk about grunge!--the showers happen every night, and she has always loved them.

Liam's cord hasn't fallen off yet, but I expect that when it does, the Husbandlet will be spending even more time in the shower, as we institute a revolving-shower-door wash-and-dry-the-kidlets routine.

Just had to comment on this..

My son loves baths so now at 2.5 he gets one every night and has since around 7 or 8 months when I discovered he slept better on bath nights. Before that it was every other day or more depending...

My daughter was not too interested (read -screamed) in the bath at first but at 8 weeks she seems to tolerate them. But she still only gets a bath once or twice a week.

On the cord discussion, I treated both of their cords the same: no baths, alcohol swabbing several times a day. My son's cord was "helped" off by the dr at 5.5 wks. My daughter's came off on it's own at 10 days. I don't think baths or swabbing has anything to do with it. Maybe gestational length does? My son was almost 3 wks early while by daughter was a day late.

My son was three weeks early, and his cord stump came off at a week. Certainly there doesn't seem to be any evidence to support the alcohol swab/no bathing practice, and I liked being able to bathe my boy!

Ummm, I am surely just as bad as you with the bathing. Not so much that they hated it, but I just didn't have time, and plus babies don't get dirty that quickly. I have also heard that it is not so good to bathe a baby EVERY day, much better to wait every other day. (Natural oils and all)

I DID bath my firstborn every day for a month maybe? But I had nothing better to do then... That went out the window pretty quick.

hmmm... until our baby was 4 months old, we were exactly like you. Then the nanny came into our lives, and it all changed. Nanny is a baby bather, and our daughter absolutely loves taking a bath now. So we are daily-if-not-more.

I had this awesome baby tub with a hammock thingy that held my newborn very securely. He screamed the first few times, but got used it it later. But that doesn't mean that he got baths more often than nine days dirty (heh). I Do Not Believe that babies need many baths. He actually didn't get his first bath untill he was a week old (the night before his baptism-- the washing before the Washing...). Wash-cloth wipings work great. So do kitchen sinks. Now, even at 2yo, he still mostly only gets showers with Daddy or a stand-up-running-water bath... The Babay cleanliness police will get me first...

Hi sister! I just checked your blog and was intrigued, as I just had a conversation about this last night. I'm told that this little guy at 6 weeks loves taking baths. Also, I will be honored to wash the Billa when I'm home in two weeks. :-D

Oops, almost forgot the picture link.
http://flickr.com/photos/brgthomas/810943074/

Oh dear, baths. The Boy used to ADORE his bath in the sink, used to cry when we took him out, used to wiggle around the kitchen in just his diaper when he heard me run the water, used to splash me and the counters and everything he could get his little paws on.

And then he decided that baths were the work of the Evil One, and that his father and I were agents of same. We don't know why. My sister has a theory: he thinks he's going "bye bye" down the drain with the water. I bought him a tub to go in the tub (if you see what I mean), thinking that it might be less intimidating somehow. Well, I got him to put his feet in, but he ended up with his arms wrapped around my neck, feet in the tub, little body stiff as a board to keep any speck of himself from touching the two inched of water, wailing, "no no no Mama!" DH whipsered to me as we rescued him, "Jeez - next time remind me to use the BOILING oil."

So I took the tub out of the bathtub and put it on the bathroom floor, with lots of towels spread out to keep either of us rom slipping, and eventually, the Boy consented to sit on my lap and paddle his feet in it. (Taking off the diaper seemed to be the sticking point: I think he knows that there's no turning back after the diaper comes off...) And eventually he stood up in the tub all on his own. But that was IT.

So this weekend, my mom got him to stand in the bathtub with her while she sprayed him off with the shower head, and the next night, I got him to repeat with me - with soap! - and I even washed his hair for the first time in...never mind. (I'd been scrubbing his head with a wet wrung-out washcloth, plus a little added soap, for the last good long while. Not perfect, but got most of the gunk off so he could be presentable at daycare.) We might be on to something, although I only recommend this method if you're done going out for the day, because while the naked baby loves it, your clothes don't.

Good luck -

9 days dirty?! Is that all???

My youngest baby (3 1/2 months old) really enjoys baths. She kicks her legs and squeals and delights in the whole experience. Even so, I really only bathe her once a week, or unless she has some kind of nasty "blowout" in her diapers and then she gets one automatically. Otherwise, she just doesn't get that dirty so I see no need in giving her one. I apply the same rule of thumb to my older kids, though they do get dirtier more quickly, so they get a bath or shower every few days, or whenever they really need it. I don't know why anyone would bathe their child everyday. Even the best soap will dry out the skin with overuse. I think those people are afraid of the Baby Cleanliness Police, or else they ARE the BCP. At any rate, I won't be calling them on you, because I'm just as guilty!

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