Scared of the bathtub! My 1 year old son used to love the tub, now he is very scared. No bad experiences, just one day he freaked and won't get into the tub. Any ideas?

Beth - posted on 06/03/2009 ( 9 moms have responded )

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My son will not go near the tub or a swimming pool now for over 2 weeks. He screams and cries. I have tried to take a bath & shower with him. I have tried to give him new and favorite toys. I have left the tub empty and only had the water running. He needs a bath at least every 48 hours b/c he struggles with baby eczema. What else can I try????

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Beth - posted on 06/10/2009

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Thanks for all of these suggestions. I am slowly trying to use one at a time as I sponge bath inbetween. Hopefully this passes quickly.

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Rebekah - posted on 06/04/2009

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My son is 9 months and is just now starting to dislike his baths. I tried new toys, taking a bath with him, etc. And then I found the key for him - changing his bath time. Instead of doing it just before bed time, when I moved it up from 7pm to 5/6pm he enjoyed it much more. I think it is because around 7pm he's starting to get more tired around that time, since at 8pm he'll be in bed. Just a suggestion, try a different time when he's the happiest and in a really good "playful" mood.

Another thing I did was use bubbles, blow them and he loved that. I just got a bubble blower, so while the bubbles blew I could bathe him real quick, bought me at least 5 minutes before he got bored. Enough time to clean at least.

I'm hoping it is just a phase.

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my friend had the same problem and we put a paddling pool in the kitchen with bubbles and cleaned him that way.

Vicki - posted on 06/03/2009

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I wonder if the water or soap causes the eczema to be more painful.

How do you feel about giving him baths?

Is it a stressful event?

Sometimes kids react to stress or fear. Maybe your mom or an auntie could give him a playful bath, just to help him get over this. Or you get in the bath (while he is looking) and have a really fun time, maybe with some really cool new toy or colored frosting and try reverse psychology. Do not let him come in the bath. This is sure to make him want to.



I do remember a similar thing happening with my child. Our solution was to not force him. We just cleaned him with a washcloth until it passed. Good luck.

Katy - posted on 06/03/2009

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Yes, for sure. To clarify... The "be patient and love him through it" was more for encouragement to help her keep her chin up, not telling her she shouldn't bathe him.

Diana - posted on 06/03/2009

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I do think you need to be patient and love him while finding a solution but that solution could take a long time. Our little guy didn't like bathes for 2 months. We kept trying things during that time but we couldn't avoid bathtime for 2 months. We just had to keep trying different things, singing, bathing with mommy, with daddy, new toys, having him stand and hold my arm, teaching him how to splash in the tub, using bubble soap in the tub. He did warm up to it for about a month and now he isn't so sure again. I just know that especially with the eczema, you can't avoid it completely. Medically he will need to bath during that time while you find a solution.

Katy - posted on 06/03/2009

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You don't think she should be patient and love him while she finds a solution to the problem? I find that strange.

Diana - posted on 06/03/2009

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My son is having the same problem. He does calm down when I'm in the tub with him but even then he wants out quickly. I just try to work fast. I feel horrible for him but he needs to be cleaned up every few days. I agree with Katy's comment on patience and loving him through it. I talk to him and sing songs and he stands up holding onto my shoulder while I bathe him. I figure it will gradually change.

Katy - posted on 06/03/2009

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Have you tried getting him a baby tub? Not the lay down type, but just a tub that you can fill away from the bathroom... maybe in the kitchen or somewhere else with hard floors (and easy clean-up). If that doesn't work, try sponge bathing him and giving him a break. Maybe try to get him into the tub again like once a week until he calms down.



Kids struggle through phases all the time. He will grow out of it, just have to remember to keep you patience and love him through it.

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