Your baby may love splashing about in the water, but there are some important rules to follow to make bathtime safe as well as fun. The first and most important rule is never to leave your baby alone in the bath. Read on for more tips on how to keep your baby clean and safe.
What’s the right water temperature for my baby’s bath?
Make sure the bath water is comfortably warm, but not hot, before putting your baby in. Put cold water in the bath first, and then add the hot water. Mix the water well to make sure there aren’t any hot spots. This will reduce the risk of scalding your baby. Never put your baby in the bath when the water is still running. The water temperature can change quickly and a child can get scalded within just a second of touching the water at around 140F. You can buy a thermometer to check the temperature of the bathwater. Some thermometers are also a fun bath toy or a piece of bath equipment, such as a non-slip mat. Aim for bath water around 100 F (38 C). If you’re not using a thermometer, a quick way to check is to use your elbow rather than your hand to gauge the temperature. The water should feel neither hot nor cold. If you have separate hot and cold taps on your bath, you could ask your plumber about fitting a thermostatic mixing valve, if there isn’t one already installed. This helps to control the water temperature so it won’t get too hot as it comes out of the tap. Newer homes have them fitted as standard. Consider covering the bath taps with an inflatable safety cover or keep your baby well away from taps which could be hot to the touch. Try to teach your baby not to touch the taps as she grows into toddlerhood. Even if she can’t turn them on now, she’ll soon be strong enough, and she could scald herself. Even though her bath may be warm, your baby can quickly lose body heat once you take her out of the water, so keep the room warm. When you lift your baby out of the bath, wrap her in a towel and pat her dry before putting her nappy on and dressing her.