New parents need to learn how to properly bathe their babies. Bathing a toddler requires a different set of skills. The goal, of course, is to make sure your little one is clean and comfortable. There are some bath time dangers that parents need to be aware of.
Bath Toys and Bacteria
That cute little rubber ducky that your baby or toddler loves to play with in the bathtub could be full of bacteria. A study published in Biofilms and Microbiomes found that bath toys are colonized by dense biofilms with complex bacterial and fungal communities. It’s not just rubber ducks! The study included a variety of bath toys.
Cleaning the outside of a bath toy is not enough. Bath toys made of synthetic polymers come in contact with water and absorb some organic material. The toys also release organic carbon through migration, leakage, and leaching. In “plain English”, the inside of the rubber ducky could be full of bacteria.
Bath Seats and Rings
Bath seats and rings help babies to sit up in the tub. Parents can use these with their baby at bath time. Watchful parents can use these items to make bath time easier. Keep in mind that the bath seat or ring is not a foolproof safety device.
It is possible for a bath seat to overturn, or for the suction cups on the bath ring to release. In other words, the bath seat or ring does not absolve the parent from the responsibility of paying close attention to their baby while they are in the bath. Never leave your baby unsupervised in the bath tub.
Avoid Bubble Baths
BabyCenter points out that bubble baths have been linked to urinary tract infections (UTIs). Bubble bath formulas, strong soaps that contain deodorants or potents scents, can irritate the lining of your baby’s urethra if the soap is not completely rinsed off.
It is recommended that parents avoid giving their baby or toddler bubble baths. Wait until they are at least three years old. Children of that age can tell their parent if it hurts when they urinate (a sign of a UTI).
Always Empty the Tub
Parents.com recommends that the bathtub be fully completely emptied immediately after each use. They point out that a baby can drown in as little as one inch of water.
Parents can empty the bath and wipe away the excess water. This reduces the risk of accidents if a curious crawler or toddler decides to explore the bathroom.
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