One would think that after spending a whole nine months being immersed in the amniotic fluid that they would naturally love being in the water. But sometimes that is just not the case. You may find yourself with a baby that hates the water. This can not only make bath time not very relaxing but cooling off in a pool during those warm summer months not very fun either. So what do you do when your baby hates the water? Here are some tips and tricks that will help your little one start to love the water.
if you love the idea of swimming for babies, but know for a fact that your baby hates water, you are probably not sure what to do. After three kids I finally have the solution.
Don’t bathe when your little one is hungry or tired
Picking times when your little one may be hungry or tired is fighting an uphill battle when it comes to bathing a baby who already doesn’t like the water. Pick a bath time after they have been fed and after their nap. While you may be tempted to give them a bath before naptime, if it gets them worked up rather than allowing them to calm down, late morning may be the best time to warm them up to the idea of being in the water.
Take a bath together
Sometimes, just being held close to Mommy or Daddy can make bath time and be in the water seems a bit easier for your little one. If your baby hates the water, try taking a bath with them. It is a smaller space to help them feel more comfortable. The security of feeling skin to skin and the warmth of your body will help your little one feel more secure in the water. You can even breastfeed them right in there too. You can also feel the warmth of the bath water and adjust the temperature before it feels too cold, helping a child you may be finicky about the temperature of the water.
Join a swim school
Enroll your baby into a swim class. I promise it would totally be worth it for both you and your child. I believe I saw my son’s first smile when we came for another swim class. Out of three of my kids, he loves water the most. He started swim classes when he was about six months and he is about to run two.
Stick to a routine
Babies are calmer when they know what to expect. Keep bath time at the same time during the day. Make a routine before they go into the bath. This can be reading a story, or having a bottle before they start to de-cloth. After you have taken off all of their clothes, you can swaddle them for a moment in a warm, soft blanket before transitioning them into the bath. This will help them know what to expect and that they will soon be heading into water.
Be aware of temperature
Taking a baby right out of the bath into the cold air does not make a happy baby. This typically happens during the winter months. You may want to consider bringing in a space heater into the bathroom and turning it on just when your little one is taking a bath. This way it won’t be too cold before or after they enter the bath. Also, your little one may have a hard time adjusting to the temperature of the water. A way to help them adjust is by putting their feet first into the water.
This is the hardest to do, especially when they are screaming and crying. Keep trying to put them in the water. Even if it means that they hang out most of the time sitting on the side of the pool. Try and try again. The more they are by water and have opportunities in playing with water, the more it will grow on them and they will begin to love it!
This post originally appeared on Way 2 Good Life. It has been reprinted with permission.