Most parents are thrilled when their baby is big enough to graduate to a real bathtub and sit in a handy seat — it’s so much easier than trying to hold and bathe a slippery, squirmy tyke in an infant bathtub. But bath seats do require some extra safety vigilance, says Alan Korn, public policy director for Safe Kids Worldwide, a nonprofit organization working to prevent accidental childhood injury. Follow these guidelines to ensure that your baby suds up safely:
• Never, ever leave your infant’s side, even for a second. “Within arm’s reach” is the maximum recommended distance.
• Don’t multitask — talk on the phone, organize toiletries — while you’re in the bathroom with your baby.
• Use as little water in the tub as possible. About an inch is enough to clean your baby and allow him to have fun splashing.
• Stop using the seat as soon as your child attempts to climb or wiggle out of it, or becomes too big to fit comfortably inside it.