New moms are given tips to conquer restless babies at night. We will try anything to help baby sleep better with the level of sleep deprivation we are experiencing with our new bundle of joy. Often times, veteran moms swear by giving baby a bath before bed. But how does it work?
First, bedtime routines are the most important sleep weapon you have and establishing a maintainable one is key. So if you’ve incorporated bathtime into that routine, you should definitely not skip it!
Some people believe that bathtime before bed will help relax your baby, allowing them to enter a calming state to prepare themselves for bedtime. Since baths raise your core body temperature, they leave baby feeling more comfortable and encourage them to fall asleep easier...and if you’re lucky, even sleep longer!
The warm water is thought to help relieve baby of any tummy pains. Bathing is often used to help soothe colicky babies as well. It is hard when our little ones are upset and we don’t know what is wrong! So baths could be a great go-to when nothing else is working.
Bathtime is actually an important part of brain development! Engage your baby in bathtime activities with toys, splashing, or fun bathtime floats like the Otteroo. Newborn’s brains grow at an average of 1% per day so it is important to engage with your baby. It just so happens that bathtime is a perfect opportunity! Plus, it will help tire them out.
To help make the bathtime to bedtime transition a success, try playing calming music and adding bubbles with a lavender scent. Lavender is believed to have a calming effect that can help babies relax faster.
One thing to consider when washing baby daily is the quality of your water source. If you are in a hard water area, daily baths may dry out your baby’s skin. Be sure to use lotion after each bath, no matter your water quality. It helps keep baby’s skin healthy and your baby may love the massage!
So, do baths before bedtime actually work? It is hard to say because each baby is different. Some babies may feel more awake after a bath, in which case you may want to tweak your bedtime routine. Although there is no definitive answer to whether baths help baby sleep or not, it is worth a try to help baby (and Mom) get more Zzz’s.