Bathing can be a great time for kids.









It can be a time for:

  • Stories and games
  • Bubbles and bonding (with siblings or with you, their favorite au pair!)
  • Relaxation before bed
  • Cleaning off the dirt and grime of a busy day

But it’s not all rubber duckies and bubbles!

Bath time can be a minefield of accidents waiting to happen.

It can also be:

  • A burning hazard
  • A flooding disaster
  • A place for serious injury

 There is a right way and safe way to give a bath







Be Prepared

Purple_drying baby

  • If you’re alone in the house with a child, take everything you need before you start the bath.
  • Bring along your mobile phone, make sure nothing’s cooking on the stove, and be sure you have the towels, washcloths, soap and bath toys you will need.
  • The most important rule of bathtub safety is to never leave a child under 6 alone in the bathtub, not even for a few seconds. Tragically, young children have drowned in only a few centimeters of water.
  • If you must leave the bathroom to answer the door, help another child, answer the phone, etc., take the child with you and then return to the bath when you can. Always stay within arms reach of the child in the bath.
  • Remember to always empty out the bath water.

It only takes 20 seconds for a child to drown.

Watch this video from the Play it Safe by the Water campaign



 Keep out of reach of children



Make sure the bathroom is safe at all times … hazardous items such as razors, scissors, cleaning products and medications need to be well out of reach.

It is also a good idea to only use soaps and shampoos that are designed for children to avoid stinging eyes and strong perfumes that can irritate skin.

Bathrooms are slippery

To avoid potentially dangerous falls, make sure there is always a non-slip mat in the bath and a toweling bathmat ready for children to step onto when they come out of the bath.

Wipe up any water spills and splashes on the floor to avoid falls.


Baby_TAPSAccidental scalds and burns are a real hazard in the bathroom

  • Always run the cold-water tap first when filling a bath, then mix in the warmer water to reduce the risk of scalds or burns.
  • Be sure the bath temperature is between 37°C and 38°C (36°C for a newborn). Any cooler than 37°C isn’t recommended because it can lower a child’s normal body temperature.
  • Never put a child in the bathtub while the water is still running; the water temperature could quickly change, or the water level might become too high.
  • The water should feel lukewarm, not hot to the touch before you put the child in the bath.

Bath toys

Dirty_toysBath toys are great as long as they are clean and free of germs.

Rinse out all toys thoroughly after each bath and leave them to air dry until they are completely dry.

Toys with holes in them tend to collect water. Squeeze these toys out thoroughly and let to air dry.

Run the toys through a dishwasher once a week or so.

If toys need a further clean or a child has gone to the toilet in the bath, ideally you should use a baby-friendly disinfectant solution.

Bathing a newbornScreenshot 2014-05-23 15.11.49

Bathing a baby can be a relaxing and gentle experience, but you do need to have some prior knowledge of how to do it.

Remember, newborn babies can’t lift their heads, so supporting the neck and keeping their faces out of the water is essential.



Watch this useful video on how to bath a newborn


Video provided courtesy of The Raising Children Network