Author: Maya Maksimovich
For newborns, it is enough to wash their hair with regular warm water without using detergents. It is advisable to start using baby shampoo after about 5 weeks of a baby’s life. As replyua.net reports, the chief pediatrician of Ukraine, Evgeniy Komarovsky, wrote about this on his blog. According to him, after the birth of a child, baby shampoo can be used only if the head is very dirty - for example, the baby was in a warm hat for a long time or the mixture got on the hair. “How to choose the right baby shampoo? The biggest mistake when choosing is using adult hygiene products to care for your child. Moreover, even a single use is risky, because children’s and adult shampoos are fundamentally different in both production technology and composition,” notes the doctor. According to Komarovsky, even if you use adult shampoo just once, it can get into the baby's eyes and cause severe pain. Manufacturers of children's shampoos use special products, and there are very high requirements for this product. When buying baby shampoo, study its composition. The product must not contain preservatives, silicones, parabens and soap. The shampoo should have a neutral PH and no strong odor. The baby only needs to dry his head with a very soft towel that absorbs moisture well. At the same time, you should not rub the baby’s hair harshly, as it can be seriously injured.
How to prepare a bath
The meaning of the procedure is not so much to wash away the dirt, but to ensure that the child relaxes, feels the pleasant warmth of the water, the touch of the mother’s hands and a fluffy towel. In addition, daily bathing is a hardening procedure. The combination of water and air, temperature changes make the immune system work and strengthen it.
You can bathe your newborn one day after the first BCG vaccination. However, there is no need for this, so nothing bad will happen if the mother postpones the procedure for a few days. The duration of the first bath is 2 – 3 minutes. After a week, the baby can be left in the water for five minutes, gradually increasing the procedure to 10 - 15 minutes.
How to properly wash a newborn in a bath? First of all, prepare the water. During the first month of life, some pediatricians recommend boiling it to avoid inflammation of the umbilical wound. For disinfection (especially if unboiled water is used), manganese can be added, achieving a slight pinkish color.
The water temperature should not be higher than 37 degrees, and the air temperature should not be lower than 22 degrees. It is important that the child does not freeze, but swimming in hot water will not bring him joy. If there is no special water thermometer, mother can easily check the temperature by immersing her elbow in the prepared bath. The skin should not feel either cold or heat.
Whether to add decoctions of medicinal herbs to the water depends on the wishes of the parents. There is no particular need for them if the child’s skin is healthy. Moreover, the newborn may develop allergies. If this happens, then the experiments must be stopped immediately. It’s another matter if the doctor prescribes a decoction of this or that herb for medicinal purposes (for example, for prickly heat, dermatitis, etc.). In this case, you need to follow the pediatrician's recommendations.
Is it possible to wash a newborn with soap?
A baby's skin is very delicate, so you need to be extremely careful with soap. Even if a bar of soap is labeled “baby”, pediatricians do not recommend using it in the first weeks of life.
Is it possible to wash a newborn with soap?
It is possible, but not often. During the first week after returning from the maternity hospital, you do not need to use soap at all when bathing. In the future, you can soap the baby’s body no more than once or twice a week.
But by and large, until the child begins to crawl, there is simply nowhere for him to get dirty, which means that it is the parents who feel the need to use soap rather than the baby himself. Sweat glands on a baby's body work differently than on the body of an adult or grown-up child. Therefore, a simple wash with water is sufficient for the baby.
As for washing
, then after stool you can and even need to use baby soap. After washing, the butt and legs should be thoroughly blotted with a thick terry towel, and the skin should be lubricated with fragrance-free baby cream.
Is it possible to wash a newborn with liquid soap, not bar soap, or, for example, cream soap? The answer is the same. It is possible, but only if the baby is really dirty. During daily “ritual” bathing there is no point in using soap. Moreover, frequent washing with soap can harm not only the baby’s skin, but also his health.
What soap is best to wash a newborn?
You can't do without soap at all. If only because the baby soils the diapers 5 to 8 times a day. What soap is best to wash a newborn so as not to harm his body? Here are the basic rules that will help parents choose the best for their baby:
good baby soap should not contain any fragrances, dyes, or synthetic components;
If the soap contains herbs, this is not always good. The fact is that they can cause allergies, irritation, and dryness.
It is necessary to take into account the individual characteristics of the child. It is impossible to say unequivocally which soap is best to wash a newborn. In some children, the skin reacts well to herbal extracts (chamomile, celandine, chamomile), while in others the plants cause allergies.
Therefore, before you soap your beloved child, check whether the soap will cause a negative reaction. The test is very simple: apply soap to the crook of your elbow or wrist, rinse and observe the skin. If after two or three days nothing bad has happened to the skin, it remains clean, without redness, you can use this soap.
What are seborrheic (milk) crusts in infants?
The first two weeks of life, most babies look perfect: small fingers, soft folds, thick cheeks. It is no coincidence that newborn photo sessions take place during this period.
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What happens next sometimes shocks many mothers. Comedones (better known as newborn acne), millia appear, mastopathy is possible, tear ducts may become clogged, calluses may form on the lips, and milk crusts may form on the baby’s head.
This is physiological seborrhea - the appearance of rough yellow or whitish scales on the eyebrows, behind the ears, on the baby’s head, even in the groin. The child becomes terribly unphotogenic. This scares mothers and causes anxiety.
How to wash a newborn's hair
An important question about how to wash a newborn’s hair arises among young parents who are enjoying their first child.
In difficult life situations, the older generation is always ready to help and share their experiences with young people.
If the Internet is the only friend you can always turn to, my story will be interesting to you.
What time to carry out water procedures
It is better to wash the baby before feeding. Since it is recommended to take a bath every day, you can choose one time and bathe your baby according to the schedule.
Many parents prefer to bathe the baby before the last evening feeding. There are two reasons for this. One of them is that dad returns from work and can help mom bathe the baby.
Another reason is the baby’s good, sound sleep at night after water procedures. You just need to monitor the temperature of the water and not make it too hot.
This can become a reason for overstimulation of the baby’s nervous system and evening whims.
It is recommended to wash a newborn baby's head and body with soap twice a week. His skin is very delicate, and frequent use of soap during bathing can cause it to become dry.
You can use antibacterial soap for children, but it is better to take a shampoo for the head from a children's series that does not cause tears.
When a baby switches to three meals a day, water procedures are carried out for him before lunch or before dinner. The need to bathe the baby before eating is due to the fact that immediately after feeding he needs to sleep.
At an older age, the child will be able to take a bath after dinner; this is especially convenient if dinner is not too late.
Bathing in the tub
Bathing in a bath begins with preparing everything you need. This is especially important when the mother bathes the baby alone.
In this case, there will be no one to bring soap or a towel. To keep everything at hand, place next to the bath:
- baby soap;
- baby shampoo,
- soft terry cloth;
- a vest, diaper or nightgown;
- cotton wool to remove moisture from the ears and nose.
Before the procedure begins, parents themselves need to prepare. Remove watches and rings, wash your hands with soap. You can wear an apron or bathrobe to avoid getting your clothes wet.
The bath must be washed with baby soap or shampoo; it is prohibited to use other household chemicals for this.
Further bathing depends on the type of bath you purchased. If it has a special stand to lay the baby down, there will be no difficulties in bathing.
In addition to the stand, they also sell hammocks, which are attached to the edges of the bath in the water and the baby is placed in them.
In the first days after the maternity hospital, it is recommended to bathe the baby in a diaper so that he is not afraid of the water. The child begins to use soap and wash his hair with baby shampoo two or four weeks after birth.
Many pediatricians do not advise bathing your baby until the umbilical wound heals. It is only important to keep the body clean under the diaper and around the mouth. You can wash your baby on days when you do not give him a full bath.
During the first baths, you do not need to fill the bath with a lot of water, especially if you bathe your child yourself and without any convenient equipment.
It is necessary to draw water at a temperature that is comfortable for the child in the first month of life - this is 36 or 37 degrees. They measure the temperature of the water with a water thermometer, because testing it with your elbow or wrist can make a mistake.
The child is placed with his head on the elbow joint of the right hand, and the fingers of the same hand support the baby under the armpits. Using a terry cloth soaked in water, wash the baby’s face and head without soap.
Apply shampoo or soap to the palm of your free hand and gently lather the baby’s head. Movements should be from the forehead to the back of the head.
Then you need to soap his body with your hand in the same way. A terry cloth is moistened in clean water and wrung out; it can be used to wash the child from foam.
The napkin is rinsed and wrung out, and the procedure is repeated twice. If water flows from the napkin, the soapy baby may catch foam and it will get into the eyes or ears. You can carefully wash off the foam by pouring it with your palm, then you don’t apply too much shampoo.
If the child is restless and lathering him in the water yourself is a problem, you can bathe him together. Or put a large pillow on the table next to the bath, cover it with a waterproof diaper, and soap the baby on the diaper next to the bath. Then wash it in water, holding it firmly with both hands.
Which shampoo to choose
It is recommended to wash your child’s hair no more than once or twice a week using shampoo. The rest of the time, just clean water and herbs.
Which washing shampoo should you choose for water procedures? If the packaging simply says “children’s” without indicating the age, you can use this shampoo only when the child turns 3 years old.
High-quality shampoos are more expensive and are sold in pharmacies.
There are shampoos that combine the functions of a bathing and hair washing product. They are very easy to use. When choosing, you need to pay attention to the composition.
It is better to choose a product without synthetic fragrance, methylparaben, propylparaben. In high-quality shampoos, these components are replaced with essential oils, vitamins, lactic and plant enzymes.
For a child, daily water procedures are much healthier than their absence. It is recommended to bathe the baby in a warm room, and gradually reduce the water temperature, which will help harden the child’s body.
After bathing, wrap the baby in a soft terry towel. Do not make rubbing movements. Do not dry children's hair with a hairdryer. The baby's body and head are carefully blotted with a towel.
The diaper cream is applied some time after bathing, when the skin is dry. After applying the cream, put on a diaper at night and feed the baby.
When the baby's hair is dry after bathing, comb it with a comb or hair brush. To prevent crusts from forming on a child’s head, do not wear a cap in the room when it is warm.
We suggest looking at the opinion of a pediatrician about when it is necessary to bathe a child before or after meals:
For newborns, it is enough to wash their hair with regular warm water without using detergents. It is advisable to start using baby shampoo after about 5 weeks of a baby’s life. As replyua.net reports, the chief pediatrician of Ukraine, Evgeniy Komarovsky, wrote about this on his blog.
The product must not contain preservatives, silicones, parabens and soap. The shampoo should have a neutral PH and no strong odor. The baby only needs to dry his head with a very soft towel that absorbs moisture well. At the same time, you should not rub the baby’s hair harshly, as it can be seriously injured.
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