Tips for a Relaxing Bath Routine
Bath time is the perfect way to end the day for anyone, but particularly for a baby. Many families use this part of their daily routine, and many babies see is as an essential sleep cue too, knowing that after bath comes sleep. Not only that, but the warm water helps to relax and soothe baby ready for the night ahead, which makes the whole ritual of a bath indispensable for so many. But water is also fun. When baby discovers splashing the fun factor intensifies and before you know it you have a situation on your hands! How to keep bath time as a relaxing and soothing experience ahead of bed time, without taking away essential learning and inevitable fun? Here are some tried and tested tips for a relaxing bath routine.
Let them play
We’ve already written about the fun that can be had at bath time, and if you’re looking for some serious wind down time, you might not want to try all the ideas in that post! But there is no reason why you can’t still add in some toys for gentle stimulation. Babies learn through play - as we all do to some extent no matter what our age- and so a few well chosen toys in the tub won’t hurt at all. Play helps to relieve stress and makes baby a lot more receptive to new situations too. Choose toys that are not noisy and that don’t require a lot of activity; toys that baby can gently explore are perfect, so waterproof bath books and plastic model boats are perfect for the more relaxing bath.
Add something soothing to the water
Be mindful of what you add as you don’t want to irritate delicate skin. Some bath products have been specially designed for bedtime baths and contain lavender to help relax and soothe. You could also add 2-3 drops of lavender oil to the water to create a soothing bath too. Mixed with chamomile oil, this helps with minor skin complaints such as eczema too.
Play some soft music
Babies respond well to music, and have done since they were in the womb. Soft, gentle music can also help to create a soothing and relaxing atmosphere - but make sure the volume is low.
Have everything ready
Don’t start scrambling around for nappies and towels at the end of a relaxing bath, as this can bring the mood right down and get baby worked up. Make sure you have everything ready before baby gets in, or ask a partner to get the things ready for you. Place your towel on a warm radiator so that you can wrap baby up nice and cosy afterwards too. Leading to our next tip…
Choose your towel carefully
One of the reasons why we are so proud of the Cuddledry apron towel. When you are ready to take baby out of the bath, there is no need for slippery shenanigans that often occur, and baby will not get cold or distressed either. You wear the Cuddledry towel like an apron so that you can gently lift baby from the bath and hold him/ her close. Then wrap baby in the soft, warm towel and enjoy a cuddle. What a perfect way to end a perfect bath.
Get baby dressed in a warm, quiet room
If there isn’t enough room in the bathroom, move slowly to another room to dress baby. This room should be dimly lit, warm and quiet. If you’re using a Cuddledry towel, all you need to do is un-popper the towel from you and lay baby down gently, still wrapped up snug and warm. The towels are made from bamboo and cotton and are double layered, so slightly thicker than normal towels and highly absorbent. You may find baby is already dry, but pat gently in case. Then dress, quickly but gently. Hopefully the transition from bath to bedroom has not disturbed the relaxed mood you’ve created!
This can be a wonderful addition to your bedtime routine and is best done after the bath. Read our post on baby massage tips.
End with a story or a lullaby
Depending on your routine (baby may have a feed before or after the bath), end your day with a short story or a gentle lullaby. Baby won’t mind whether or not you can sing in tune!