How to get your toddler to love baths
Bath time may be a relaxing and fun time for you, but it could be downright torturous for your toddler- at least from their perspective! For some of them, the bath is a no-go-zone, and they won’t be afraid to be vocal about it.
The secret to getting your toddler to love baths is to find out the main reason why they resist it. There are lots of things that can make kids to dislike baths. When you identify this reason and work towards fixing it, you will be well on your way to getting your child to love bath time.
Why doesn’t my toddler like taking baths?
If your toddler gets anxious every time the subject of baths is introduced, it is likely because of one of the following reasons:
- They might have had a bad experience during a previous bath. Maybe the water was too cold or too hot, or some soap got into their eyes. This alone is enough to make them dislike baths.
- Toddlers are at the age where most things are new to them. Trying to understand why water feels the way it does, where it comes from, and where it goes after the bath might be a lot for a child and develop into fear.
- It is also at this age that toddlers are gaining some freedom and independence so if bath time is set to interrupt their playtime, you can expect them to fight back and refuse to bathe.
- Most of the time, bath time is followed by a nap, and once your child realizes this is part of their routine, they might resist bath time.
What to do if your toddler won’t bath
Here are a few things you can do when your little one refuses to bathe:
Make bath time fun
Your child will be more willing to take a bath if you make it look like a fun activity instead of a task they need to get done. You can do this by putting some toys in the bathtub. Or better yet, let your child choose which 'bath friends’ they want to join them. To this end, invest in some rubber toys and strainers for your little one to play with.
Another way you can jazz up bath time is by using bubbles and colors. A bubble bath also helps to conceal the tub floor and drain, which might be a source of fear for your little one.
Consider your child’s sensory needs
Your child might be afraid of taking a shower because the water was either too hot or too cold one time. Use a bath thermometer to take the temperature of the water and adjust it before your toddler gets in. The water temperature should be around 37 degrees.
If your child is afraid of soap getting in their eyes or having water close to their ears, consider getting some swimming goggles or a bath visor to keep the water away. A rinse cup can also help since you can regulate the amount of water to pour.
Let them experiment
If your kids are bored with regular toys, convince them to take part in a water-experiments.
Try bath dye accessories, such as water colour changing bath bombs.
Give him a strainer and let him watch how falling water change its patterns. A plastic mirror will allow to observe and under water reflections and a wine cork or a ping-pong ball will make a great pirate ship.
Take it slow
Like most aspects of a child's development, patience is essential here. It might take some time before your toddler is ready to get in the tub, so try not to rush them.
Instead of full baths, go for sponge baths for a while. Do this for a while and they might miss the feeling of being in the bath.
Putting your child in an empty bathtub can also assist their water confidence. It will show them that there's nothing to be afraid of.
As you bathe your little one, have everything you might need on hand. Don’t leave them unattended in the bath since accidents are more likely to happen that way.
You should also keep the towel within reach as you bathe them. This will be handy for wiping the eyes and hair during bath time.
If you are bathing your infant, you might need bath support as well to ensure their safety and stability.
So there you have it. With the tips and tricks outlined here, getting your toddler to enjoy bath time won’t be hard. Just keep in mind that it won’t happen overnight. It’s going to be a gradual process but eventually, you’re going to get there. Good luck!