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Old 02-12-2009, 03:46 AM
Blue Mood Blue Mood is offline
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: UK
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How often do you give your kids a bath?

In a related thread it seems that a lot of kids take baths every day. I generally give my kids baths on an as-needed basis, which is usually every three days. Even when they were babies I didn't fully bathe them daily. (Of course all of their dirty bits would get a thorough cleaning with a washcloth.)

So I'm curious, if you bathe your kids daily is it because they actually need it? Or do they enjoy it? Maybe it's just a habit/part of a bedtime routine? Or maybe that's just how often you think it should be done? And what do you think about kids like mine who don't bathe daily - is it gross? Weird? (Do keep in mind that my kids are not actually dirty, and you would not know whether they had a bath the previous day unless you asked.)
Old 02-12-2009, 04:02 AM
Petrobey Mavromihalis Petrobey Mavromihalis is offline
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Location: Exo Mani
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Back in the UK we would bath my daughter every other day at least. She generally enjoys it and it's a fun thing to do.

We're in Greece now and the hot water comes from solar panels. This means that we don't always have hot water at this time of year. Heating up a tank electrically takes an hour and is expensive. So now she gets a bath every 3 days or so (sometimes 4-5). The rest of the time she gets wiped with a cold flannel (she's not an enormous fan of this!). She isn't any dirtier than your average 2.5 year old.

The perception that you cannot be clean without full body immersions at least once a day is nonsense IMO.
Old 02-12-2009, 04:39 AM
Sublight Sublight is offline
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Posts: 10,287
Our son (2) gets a shower every evening before bed. He doesn't really need one, but (a) he enjoys it a lot, (b) it sets up a good routine for going to bed, and (c) I (or his mother) was going to take a shower anyway, so he joins in and we kill two birds with one stone.
Old 02-12-2009, 05:15 AM
hawthorne hawthorne is offline
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 4,751
We have two. They get bathed a couple of times a week. Their skin is soft and lovely and they smell divine. I shower every morning and smell like the troubles of the world by bedtime.
Old 02-12-2009, 05:55 AM
Charley Charley is offline
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Singapore
Posts: 751
Our 2 year old gets a bath before bed almost every night but it's not really anything to do with cleanliness (well not usuallly). She usually just sits in a couple of inches of water and splashes about a bit - there's often no soap or actual washing involved. She enjoys it and it's a good part of the bedtime routine. I don't think anything of children who have other routines, particularly - I don't think little children need bathing that regularly.
Old 02-12-2009, 05:59 AM
Nightingale Nightingale is offline
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 762
In the summer my kids (ages 4 and almost 2) get a bath every day, with hair washed, because they have played outside and gotten filthy, sweaty, and smelly. In the winter it's usually every other day, or every third, because they just aren't getting that dirty. I'll wash their faces, hands and feet, and bottoms every night, but don't feel the need to put them in the tub unless they are truly dirty.
Old 02-12-2009, 06:07 AM
Audrey Levins Audrey Levins is offline
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: San Antonio, TX
Posts: 2,375
If I'm off work and lounging around the of my favorite activities...I may go up to 48 hours without showering.

If I have to work, or if I worked the night before (I bartend so I think of everything in "nightly" terms) then I will shower...mainly because I am paranoid about smelling like a bar.

I don't see why children should be any different; in a perfect world they would be bathed every day, but I grew up reading Laura Ingalls Wilder books wherein everyone took a bath on Saturday nights, once a week. Granted, I've always assumed that if I were to travel back in time, the smell of humanity would be the first thing I'd notice....but smelling a little "sour" won't kill you.

Having said that...when I was a kid I bathed daily, and it's still ingrained. And for the can be compared to cat boxes, in that the owners of the cats/cat boxes can't smell it, but everybody else can. Way before kids are old enough to develop B.O., they can still smell quite strongly of dirt and sweat and "dirty little kid." Just because you can't smell it doesn't mean others won't.

I used to babysit, quite a lot. And after a day of running around and playing, etc., kids can smell rather terrible.

Just FYI.
Old 02-12-2009, 06:21 AM
Alessan Alessan is offline
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Tel Aviv
Posts: 22,784
My son (4) bathes every evening, no matter what.

I shower twice a day, myself.
Old 02-12-2009, 06:31 AM
SciFiSam SciFiSam is offline
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Location: Beffnal Green innit
Posts: 8,183
Every couple of days, sometimes 3. Bathing her takes a long time, because she has waist-length hair, and it seems a bit wasteful to run a full bath just to wash her body - a flannel will do that just as well.
Old 02-12-2009, 06:42 AM
Kalhoun Kalhoun is offline
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Location: Over by dere
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It's been a long time, but Kid Kalhoun got a bath almost every day because he was a rough and tumble kid who got dirty and sweaty.
Old 02-12-2009, 07:04 AM
TommyTutone TommyTutone is offline
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Location: north Atlanta
Posts: 1,209
During the colder times of year, our 6-year old gets a bath on non-karate days: Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. During the summer, when he is in camp, he will get a bath nearly every day as he is playing and rolling around outside and getting messy as kids will do.
Old 02-12-2009, 07:33 AM
Hamlet Hamlet is offline
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Location: Where the Wild Things Are
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Does taking them out back and spraying them down with a water hose count?
Old 02-12-2009, 07:50 AM
VunderBob VunderBob is offline
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I don't.

He's an adult and can do it himself.
Old 02-12-2009, 08:18 AM
StuffLikeThatThere StuffLikeThatThere is offline
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Location: a farm in Ohio
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My son (nearly six months old) gets a bath almost every night, but it's not so much about cleanliness. He LOVES it. He gets his last bottle from Papa, and goes to the bath, where he will play and splash and giggle as long as we will let him. Seriously, he's never gotten tired of it yet, and my husband has sat there with him for almost an hour. We get him out, dry him off, put on a sleeper, and kiss him goodnight. He sleeps like a log.

I have no idea whether the bath and accompanying routine help with the sleeping, but I'm so happy to be getting a solid night that I'm not messing with success.
Old 02-12-2009, 08:37 AM
Dangerosa Dangerosa is offline
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Location: Twin Cities, Minnesota
Posts: 21,873
Now that they are nine and ten - pretty much every day. My son has stopped smelling like child and started to smell like boy heading to teen. And my daughter has already hit greasy.

As small kids - once a week. My son has eczema and too many baths always caused him to break out. Plus a friend of a friend had her three year old drown in the tub when my kids were babies and so I was never a huge toddler in the tub fan. If they got dirty we'd pop them in more often, but really, they seldom got dirty - and small kids don't really get stinky - as long as you are taking care of their diapers properly.
One day, in Teletubbie land, it was Tinkie Winkie's turn to wear the skirt.
Old 02-12-2009, 09:58 AM
corkboard corkboard is offline
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 6,324
We shower our kids- 5 & 7- every other day. They do most of the work, and one of us just sort of soaps up the washcloth and supervises ("don't forget your armpits. did you do between your legs yet? be careful you don't slip when you do your feet"). We also shampoo and condition their hair, which is tricky for them b/c it's long & thick.

Until about a year ago, we bathed them 2x/week, but that was hard on us. It ain't easy kneeling & hunching over the tub for 30 minutes with a bad back. The kids much prefer baths to showers.
Old 02-12-2009, 10:02 AM
Dottygumdrop Dottygumdrop is offline
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Location: Gold Coast, Australia
Posts: 1,694
During winter, our daughter (22 months) has a bath every second day, sometimes once every three days, but gets a flannel/washcloth cleaning on the odd days. During summer, she generally has a bath every day, but we usually only wash her hair and do the whole soap thing every other day.
Old 02-12-2009, 10:07 AM
Maastricht Maastricht is offline
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My baby son is now almost nine months. When we got him home, the nurse warned against every day bathing, especially against every day bathing with soap. She said it was not necessary and might even be harmful. We settled on bathing our baby twice a week, or whenever he had had an diaper explosion. We washed his hair once a week.

Apparently, diaper rash is a very common ailment in babies. Our son's bottom's skin is flawless. As for his smell, he smells great to us, but of course, we are biased.

His dad and I both shower every day.

OtOH, now that he has started crawling, I wondered if I should wash his hands more often. He uses his hands to crawl on our floor, then sucks on his fingers. Continually. But we decided against that; you'd have to do it all the time. We just keep our floors clean and hope he builds up a good immune system.

Last week, he had a cold. I hated the build-up of snot around his nostrils, and I tried to clean his nose every chanche I got. But he hates, hates that, and I didn't want to keep spoiling his mood.
Old 02-12-2009, 10:14 AM
brix11 brix11 is offline
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Posts: 256
We bathe our two kids (2 and 4) together every other day. That just seems right to me. We will occasionally skip it if the bedtime routine is already compromised (i.e. we get home from an outing too late).
Old 02-12-2009, 10:16 AM
Scumpup Scumpup is offline
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 13,346
I don't give my kids baths at all. It'd be too oogie with the ones who are 18 and 19, and the 7 year old views taking her own baths as a mark of her growing independence.
Old 02-12-2009, 10:21 AM
Solfy Solfy is offline
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Pittsburghish
Posts: 1,256
This thread is making me feel so much better. I've been having mom-guilt hearing others talk about nightly baths.
When we had a functional bathtub at the last house, baths were every other day to every few days. Since we moved into the "new" house 1.5yrs ago, baths are about twice a week and/or as needed. The only tub is temporarily rigged in the unheated basement, rendering it useless in the winter. Showering the kids (aged 3 and 5) upstairs is a pain in the neck. They frequently shower with me on weekend mornings because it's the best way to get their hair washed without flooding the bathroom by leaving the shower door open.

Do you know what it's like to try to shave your legs in a 36" shower stall with three people?

I can't wait until the new bathroom is built and the tub is moved upstairs.
Old 02-12-2009, 10:22 AM
BetsQ BetsQ is offline
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Maryland
Posts: 1,752
Our kids (2 and 6) bathe most days in the winter and everyday in the summer. I want to establish good daily hygiene practices before they become recalcitrant, stinky teenagers.
Old 02-12-2009, 11:55 AM
jali jali is offline
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: domebo
Posts: 3,136
My formerly shower- resistant youngest son now showers at least once, and sometimes twice per day. He's 17, he's kissed a girl and he liked it.


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