Bath time can be a struggle for parents of toddlers. Some toddlers are terribly afraid of water; others love water but don’t want to take a bath. What’s a parent to do? Making bath time a more fun experience can help toddlers and parents alike. Here are some tips.
Put on a bathing suit and get in the tub with your toddler. Some pediatricians recommend this as a way to help alleviate toddler fears and anxiety about the water – going down the drain, and so forth.
If your toddler is very afraid, you might have him sit on your lap and bathe that way. You can also go gradually – dip his feet in and out quickly, making it fun and full of movement. Then up to his knees, then on your lap, etc. You may find you only have to do this a few times before your toddler’s fears are overcome and he can take a bath with you nearby, but not in the water.
Bath toys can be so much fun for toddlers. You don’t have to have anything really expensive; raid your recycle bin and find some plastic items that make safe, fun toys. Some examples are:
* Water bottles (sports tops can be really fun)
* Empty soap pumps
* Yogurt or margarine containers
* Plastic food containers
As long as there are no small parts or sharp edges, recycled items make really fun bath toys.
Of course, you can buy bath toys, too. Keep these and all bath toys in a special place and only get them out when it’s time to bathe. This may help your toddler look forward to bath time.
Bubble bath that is age-appropriate can be a lot of fun, and help your toddler who may be afraid of soap on her head and/or face. Try making a bubble “hat” and sneakily wash her hair. You can also let your toddler blow bubbles with a wand or other toy while she’s in the bath.
Know Your Toddler
Try to incorporate your toddler’s interest into the bath. For example, if your toddler loves to read, there are actually waterproof books made for the bath. Does he like cars? Look for a bath toy that is a “car wash” or other car-oriented toy with waterproof cars.
Maybe he likes to draw. There are washable “crayons” made from soap that your toddler can use to draw all over the bathtub and surrounding walls. For “magical” fun, look for dye tablets that dissolve in bath water and turn the bath water fun colors.