Typically, bath time is a super sweet time for connection with your child that helps them unwind, relax, and have a little water fun before bedtime. As they grow older, it becomes a little bit more of a battle though, and reinforcing bath time can be that thorn in many parents sides. We feel you, mama. So if you're the mom who is using all this summer pool time as bath time and praying that the chlorine is really doing its job, you'll probably be delighted to hear that you're not alone.
The American Academy of Pediatrics feels that whenever it first comes to newborns that newborns only need to be bathed up to three times per week because of their incredibly delicate skin. Then, whenever it comes older children in the 6-11 age group, The American Academy of Dermatology says that (contrary to many parent's beliefs) that once or twice a week is just fine - unless they are actually dirty, of course.
Taking a step beyond what all the doctors say, though, a recent poll was conducted, revealing that 58 percent of participants said they give their child a bath four to seven times per week.
“Bathtime is a full sensory experience for the child; from the feel of the soap, wash cloth, and caregiver's hands, to the buoyancy of the water for vestibular input, to the sounds of water splashing and bathroom echoes,” said Josephine Calina, an occupational therapist with Pediatric Therapy Network. “The child’s overall development is enhanced through the bonding and social interactions with caregivers and siblings, and fine motor and visual motor skills are improved as the child manipulates bath toys.”
The poll also revealed a lot of emotions that mom have towards bath times, which is a key indicator of why they are bathing their kids so much. Moms responding to the poll indicated that they were 55 percent more likely to administer bath time than dads, while 37 percent stated the routine was split between the two. And just over 89 percent of respondents said they look forward to bath time because their child is relaxed and happy afterwards.
This totally goes to show that bath time is really much more than just about making sure our kiddos are squeaky clean, but about the moments and cuddles that come with them being so calm after. So the great bath time debate really boils down to what works the best for you and you're family. If you're running out of time at the end of the day, you can chill out and know that just a few baths a week is totally okay. But if you're looking for some extra snuggle time - then bring on the bubbles!