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Cleaning and Bathing Children from Infancy to Adolescence

Cleaning and Bathing Children from Infancy to Adolescence

During Infancy

The health of a newborn depends on its cleanliness. The following are some of the most important aspects for parents to keep in mind:

To begin with, the newborn should be bathed in warm water every day and every night to ensure a clean, healthy body. In order to weaken a baby's health and ensure future sickness, the most effective method is to immerse it in cold water for many minutes in order to "harden" the constitution. When it is sponged with lukewarm water in the morning, the evening bath should be kept warm enough to please the sensations.

If you wait a few months thereafter, you may use cold water instead of warm to wash your face and body every morning in the summer. Although cold water might be beneficial for a short length of time, prolonged exposure to it can depress vital energy and prevent that healthy glow on the skin that generally occurs after the instantaneous and brief action of cold, on which its utility is based. The cold bath may be dangerous for certain youngsters because of their high sensitivity and lack of responsiveness; there is no warm glow on the surface when it is used harmfully, so its effects must be well monitored.


A flannel should always be used to gently and completely dry the skin's surface, and the skin should be warmed and stimulated while being massaged dry. The washing and drying procedure must not be done slowly, but quickly and efficiently, and it will be discovered to be one of the most effective techniques for strengthening the newborn. Excruciatingly painful excoriations and sores may be avoided by dusting hair-powder or starch over the kid's armpits, groins, and nates, which should be done with extra care if the youngster is really overweight. Only those portions of the body that are exposed to filth need to be cleaned with soap.

During Childhood 

When this time comes, or not long after, bathing is commonly neglected; the nurse is content with keeping the kid's hands and face clean, but the daily washing of the whole body is still required, not only to maintain cleanliness but also to improve the health of the child to a great degree.

When a healthy kid wakes from his or her bed refreshed and ready for the day, he or she should be given a shower bath, or, if this excites and alarms him or her too much, should be sponged with salt water from head to toe. If the weather is really cold, the water may be somewhat lukewarm, but if his constitution can handle it, the water should remain cold all year long. After that, the body should be dried quickly, a coarse towel should be quickly but thoroughly rubbed over it, and garments should be quickly placed on. Every morning for the rest of the child's life, be sure to do this ritual.

If a youngster is at the beach, they should take advantage of it and go sunbathing instead. The optimum time to take a cold bath is two or three hours after breakfast; however, he must not be exhausted beforehand, as this might put him at risk. He must be careful not to stay in too long because the animal's heat would be decreased below the right level, which would be quite harmful. This is a common technique for weak-willed lads to get into all sorts of trouble. Children should not be afraid of being submerged in water during bathing, and all possible measures should be taken to avoid this. Whenever possible, teach a healthy and strong kid how to swim from an early age, as it has the greatest positive consequences; swimming is a very energizing activity, and the cold bath therefore becomes twice as useful.

Cold baths in the summer may be an excellent tonic for children with sensitive or strumous constitutions, and if you live near the seaside, you'll find that sea bathing is especially beneficial. In this case, the effects of sea bathing must be closely monitored, as it will do no good until followed by an increase in strength and hunger, and thus should be immediately abandoned in favor of a warm or tepid bath. There is a misconception that warm baths relax and weaken, but in this instance, as in many other situations, they would really strengthen and tone the whole system. In reality, the tepid bath is to this youngster what the cold one would be to the more mature.

For those who cannot get their hands on a cold saltwater soaking bath, lukewarm vinegar and water or tepid salt water must be utilized instead.

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