1. She looks so fragile! Is it really okay for me to bathe my newborn?
All babies are bathed the day they are born, and daily in the hospital, saysPauline Wee, assistant director at the obstetric wards of the Nursing Division atKK Women’s and Children’s Hospital(KKH).When you’re home, you should continue to do so every day to keep her clean and fresh. Keep each session to only five to 10 minutes at the most. Any longer and she might catch a chill, Pauline adds. Make sure you cradle your baby’s neck and back with one arm, while you bathe her with the other.(Click on arrows in photos to find out more.)
2. How can I tell if the water temperature is just right?
The water should be warm, not hot, Pauline from KKH says. The easiest and fastest way to test the temperature is to dip your elbow into the water. If it feels fine, it will be all right for your baby.Related: Baby prefers maid: 8 things working mums should do
3. Grandma says rubbing traditional Ruyi oil on the tummy after bath helps reduce “wind”. How safe is that?
Any baby oil – when used with proper massage techniques – works just as well, saysWong Boh Boi, assistant director of clinical services and senior parentcraftlactation consultant in Thomson Parentcraft Centre atThomson Medical Centre.But do not apply the oil directly to her skin. Put a few drops in your hands and rub them before massaging Baby. Warm hands are more soothing; cold hands may startle her and make her cry.Related: Baby favours one parent over the other: what to do
4. When’s the best time to give a bath?
It doesn’t matter if it’s morning or evening, so long as she is not hungry or crying. "I’d recommend that you give her a good, thorough bath in the morning and a quick soak in the evening before bedtime to help her sleep better," Boh Boi suggests. Overdue babies tend to have slightly drier skin because they lose their protective vernix coating. You may want to apply moisturiser after the bath to keep her tender skin soft.Related: 5 questions to ask before you buy a stroller(Photos: 123RF.com)