When Your Toddler Has a Fear of The Bath

Why Some Babies Fear Bath-Time & 7 Tricks to Solve The Problem

Is your little one scared of bath time? Many babies have a fear of bath for some reasons of their own – especially when they grow older and become toddlers. If your baby has suddenly developed this fear, what could have triggered it and how to overcome his/her fear of the bath?

As your child leaves infancy and moves to toddlerhood, she might also outgrow many quirks and habits of her babyhood. You will notice that she has adopted new quirks and habits! One of the most widely seen characteristics is the sudden fear of the bath in toddlers.

Reasons to Fear a Bathtime

What are the reasons behind this development? Why is your child suddenly scared of the bath? Here are answers to your questions:

  • While you may not know the exact cause that triggered your baby’s sudden fear of the bath, it’s most likely because your toddler is developing awareness of her environment. She is aware of water going down the drain and thus she fears she will get sucked into the drain too.
  • There may be some other reasons like she is scared of the soap getting into her eyes, getting hurt from the tap, or slipping down in the bath.
  • A toddler’s imagination is blooming; she might see and hear things and interpret them wildly. Most toddlers make weird things out of normal situations and concoct scary stories.
  • Sometimes a toddler is scared of bubble bath because she can’t see the bottom of the tub. This makes her afraid of all the unknown creatures lurking under the bubbles.

Tips to Overcome Your Toddler’s Bath-Time Fears

Though your daughter’s or son’s fear of the bath might not disappear overnight, you should try these tips and tricks to help your toddler gradually overcome her fear of the bath:

1. Jazz it Up

Who doesn’t enjoy a fancy bath time? Pour some bubble soap into your child’s tub and throw in some bath toys. Seeing the bubbles and the cute little toys, your child might be tempted to step inside the tub.

2. Make a Bath for Two

Get into the tub yourself and play with the cute bath toys and blow bubbles. Without looking at her, make an exaggerated show of enjoying yourself. Seeing you having fun, she would want to join you too.

3. Concentrate on the Fun

Initially, instead of washing her try to concentrate on just playing with her. If she realizes that bath time is actually fun, she will start enjoying it. You can sponge her later.

4. Experiment a Little

As a parent, you need to experiment constantly to get your toddler interested in her bath.

  • Buy her a new bath tub or toys.
  • Weave an interesting story around her bath toys.
  • Make her wear a specially designed shower cap that will prevent soapy water from her shampoo entering her eyes.
  • Give her a bath from a bucket if she is scared of getting into the tub.

5. Prepare the Bath Before Her

If your toddler sees you preparing her bath, chances are that she might be less scared of it. Start the tap and show her how water from the tap fills up the tub. Fill up little water only initially, and avoid using bubbles if she is afraid of them.

6. Don’t Force Your Child

Never force your child into the bathtub. It might work against you. Instead, encourage her with comforting words like ‘do not worry, I am here for you’, ‘I will not let you get hurt or slip’, etc. Cuddle her to show her you mean it.

7. Wet Massage

Instead of bath, sometimes choose to sponge your child with a cloth. There is no need to place her in the bathtub on a day she’s especially fussy. Long and gentle strokes of massage will make her feel relaxed. It is also a very good way to bond with your baby.

We know that it’s frustrating when your child throws a tantrum or works herself up at the mere mention of the word ‘bath time.’ But take heart in the fact that it’s only a temporary phase. It shall pass too.

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