A sponge bath is like a regular bath, except you DON’T put your baby in the water. Newborns should only get sponge baths for the first couple of weeks until the stump of the umbilical cord falls off (usually happens by about one or two weeks of age). The purpose of the sponge bath is to keep the umbilical area clean and dry, to help fight infection and prevent delayed healing.

☑️ Get supplies ready before you begin. Have a basin of water, a damp washcloth rinsed in soap-free water, a couple dry towels, new diaper, clean baby outfit, and anything else you might need within reach before you begin.
☑️Lay baby on a flat surface that is comfortable for both of you—a changing table, bed, floor, or counter next to the sink will do. Pad hard surfaces with a blanket or fluffy towel. If your baby is on a surface above the floor, always use a safety strap or keep one hand on her to prevent falls.
☑️ Start washing the face first. Use the dampened cloth to wash her face, being careful not to get water into her eyes or mouth. Then, dip it in the basin of water before washing the rest of her body and, finally, the diaper area.
☑️Pay special attention to creases under the arms, behind the ears, around the neck, and, especially with the girls, in the genital area.
☑️ Always keep your baby warm. During the sponge bath, wrap your baby in a dry towel and uncover only the parts of her body you are actively washing.
☑️Leave the head for the end. Once your baby is all clean and dried, wrap baby safely wash and dry the head quickly. This step is very relaxing for most babies.

Paula Marino is an active Registered Nurse with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Florida State University. She has more than 10 years of experience working with babies in the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) and supporting parents with the care of their newborns at home. Since newborn babies wake up to eat every 2-3 hours, exhaustion takes a toll on new parents. Paula founded Babies RN to provide SLEEP to parents by having the best professionals take care of their babies overnight. She is proud to have the most qualified and trustworthy team of Night Nurses with NICU and Pediatric backgrounds to give parents peace of mind so they can rest and get a good nights’ sleep. Babies RN Paula Marino, RN Tel (305) 608 – 9266