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My child is scared in the bath: you can do this!

by Joost Nusselder | Updated on:  December 30, 2020

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Most kids have a lot of fun in the bath! Of course there are also little ones who find bathing a very annoying part of the daily routine.

Usually this is because they are afraid of water.

We would like to give you a number of options to make your little one's bathing experience as pleasant as possible.

We will discuss the causes of the badder problems and tell you how you can help your little one overcome his or her fear.

You can do this if your child is scared in the bath

There are also fun toys for sale that you can use to reassure your child.

You may even be able to make bathing a very pleasant experience for your child!

A play theme in your mailbox every month?

Fun play tips, activity books and more, with the first email being our free mini-guide "educational toys"

We will only use your email address for this newsletter and respect your privacy

How can your child be scared in the bath?

It may of course be the case that your child has a congenital fear of water, but often the fear is due to a bad experience in the bath.

A child is only really afraid of water if it is afraid of water in general.

If you have little anxiety in the bath, it is usually because it has previously submerged unexpectedly or was very shocked in the bath and no longer feels safe.

Try to find out where things went wrong; Is it congenital or has something bad happened during bathing?

These are some possible causes that can cause a child to develop water anxiety:

  • Your child has previously been shocked while bathing and may have submerged.
  • Your little one has ear problems. The ears can hurt more in the water. Even if the ears are good again, your child can still associate the bath with an earache.
  • You yourself are not relaxed when you bathe your baby.

What can you do about bad anxiety?

Often your child grows over his fear, but it is of course nice to help overcome it. The sooner your darling gets rid of this bad fear, the better of course!

Help your child get over the bath anxiety by taking plenty of time for the bath ritual. If necessary, use toys in the bath to divert attention.

It is good for an anxious baby to show that water can also be nice, support him or her well and do not make sudden movements, some essential lavender oil drops in the bath water often have a soothing effect.

Also try taking a shower or bath with your child. Doing things together with mom or dad feels very safe for your little one!

For example, with anxious toddlers and toddlers you can:

  1. Reading stories about babies taking a bath: Your little one will understand that it is not the only one who is afraid of taking a bath and that there really will be a solution. A nice book for toddlers for example Farmer Boris: In the bath
  2. Buy a bath for his or her doll. Fill it with warm water and let your little one lather and rinse the doll, this gives your child self-confidence. It BABY born® Doll Bath with Rubber Duckling is a beautiful one! There is even a shower head!
  3. Provide a ritual: It feels safer for your child if you have a fixed sequence during the bath ritual.
  4. Keep very calm yourself. Take your little one's fears seriously, but don't confirm the fears.

Which tools can you use?

It is very important that the first experiences in the bath are very pleasant experiences for your little one. There are various resources that can help you and your child with this.

Provide the right aids: You can use handy bath seats so that your little one feels safer while bathing.

There are also the fun bath toys that can attract attention, so that the fear is forgotten for a while!

You can purchase a tummy tub for your newborn baby, such as the Bébé-jou bubble that we have reviewed here before, this is a small, round bath for babies up to about nine months old.

It completely mimics the conditions in the womb, so it makes your little one feel very safe.

If your baby or toddler is really scared, there are also good and very comfortable bath seats for sale, such as this one from TJ Store:

TJ Store Baby Bath Seat

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This seat is suitable for very little ones. You can also opt for the so-called bath rings for babies from six months, such as these cheerful Smoby Cotoons, there are even a few toys on the bath ring:

Smoby Cotoons plastic bath seat 2 in 1

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The seats are attached to the bath with suction cups.

There are also a number of very nice toys for the bath, which can ensure that the bathing ritual is very pleasant.

The classic, but oh so nice rubber duck is of course always there. Furthermore, Sophie the giraffe always has nice bath toys and we have here a whole article with the best toys for the bath.

For frightened children this one is still interesting in addition to the toys that I have discussed the above article, this VTech Little Love baby doll Bobby goes in bath:

VTech Little Love Bobby Gets A Bath

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The Vtech doll sings and makes cheerful sounds in the water! Bobby knows when he's in the water and when he's not. Great fun for your scared toddler!

Here it is tested by these children:

How do you prepare the ideal bath for your child?

  • First of all, ensure the correct temperature of the bath water! The ideal temperature for a baby bath is 37 degrees.
  • Fill the bath and make sure that all necessary items are within reach. Support the head and try to let your little one slide very quietly into the warm water.
  • Paying attention to and care for the bathing ritual is important; Pay attention to the right water temperature, a warm environment, create peace and a relaxed atmosphere for your child.
  • Putting your baby in a bath right after feeding is not a good idea, it often happens that the milk or food comes back up and that is not pleasant.
  • It is a good idea to give your baby a nice bath before going to sleep. A warm bath is very soothing and will ensure that your little one falls asleep more easily afterwards.

Bathing your baby before or after feeding?

It is much wiser to let your baby bathe before meals unless your little one is too hungry. You could possibly do it in the morning before feeding
to do. If you prefer to take the bath after dinner, wait until the food has settled well.

Bathing your baby shortly after eating causes the food to surface and causes your little one to vomit.

The ideal time for a slightly larger baby to take a bath is before going to sleep, your little one will be nice and pink and go to his bed relaxed.

Even then, it is better to ensure that he or she has eaten an hour in advance.

What is the best way to bathe my baby?

Even if your little one can sit independently in the bath, always stick with it! Provide the correct water temperature. Take time to bathe your sweetheart and try
always follow the same bathing ritual.

  • You could follow the following steps:
    Take the time to reassure your little one and play a little while bathing! A
    singing a song is also comforting.
  • Make sure the temperature in the room is around twenty one degrees.
  • Have all the necessities ready within reach; soap and possibly shampoo, bath oil, towel, diaper and baby's clothes.
  • Fill the bath and check the temperature preferably with the bath thermometer. It could also be done with your elbow.
  • First wash your baby's face without soap and dry it
  • Gently cleanse your baby with soap or bath oil. Also think of the backs of the knees, neck folds, armpits and folds in the thighs.
  • Hold your baby firmly under the armpits so that the head rests on your forearm. This prevents slipping.
  • Your baby should not stay in the bath for too long. About ten minutes is really long enough!
  • Take your little one out of the bath and wrap him or her in a soft towel. You can also use a thin, hydrophilic cloth to dry your baby well in any place.
  • Do not forget to dry the skin folds well, this will prevent skin irritation.
  • Place your little one on a dry towel for further grooming. For example, you can use some talcum powder for the bottom and hair lotion for the head.
  • Now your baby is ready to be dressed!

Conclusion

Hopefully these tips have helped you and you can help your child overcome his or her fear. Don't give up, patience and some toys work wonders, good luck!

Always something to do for the holidays or rainy day?

Play Choice now has the ultimate activity book collection, with over 60 pages of fun coloring pages and educational puzzles.

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Speelkeuze.nl is a content marketer, father and loves trying out new toys. As a child he came into contact with everything related to games when his mother started the Tinnen Soldaat in Ede. Now he and his team create helpful blog articles to help loyal readers with fun play ideas.