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Your 10 month old baby is likely into everything these days, and by bedtime, you likely have quite a mess on your hands. At this age, it can be quite a challenge to keep your little one clean and presentable. Here are a few tips to help along the way.

Bathing

While you may have been bathing your baby every few days up until now, at this messy age, it may be necessary to bathe every day. By 10 months old, your baby will likely be outgrowing the familiar infant tub, yet it may still be hard for you to imagine placing your little one in the huge bathtub. To keep your baby safe, you can get a larger plastic tub for your baby. If you want to make the transition to the big tub, be sure to get a protective bumper for the sides of the bathtub as well as a protective covering to cover the faucet. A non-slip mat is essential, as well, to keep your baby safe.

Hair care

You may already have picked out your favorite hypoallergenic baby shampoo to keep your baby’s hair clean. But some babies at this age are already quite the head of hair, leaving some parents to wonder if they need to use additional products. While a separate conditioner is probably not necessary at this age, a tear-free detangler is fine for those matted curls. And be wary of hair clips or bows — while they look adorable, they are potential choking hazards if they slip off.

If you are thinking about your baby’s first haircut already, there are a few things you can do to make this outing a success. First, choose your hairstylist wisely. A stylist who is used to wiggly, screaming babies will be much more likely to produce good results than a stylist used to cutting adult hair. Also, plan the outing at a time when your baby is not hungry or tired. Finally, offer your child a favorite stuffed animal or blanket during the haircut to soothe him or her.

Brushing teeth

Some babies at 10 months don’t even have one tooth, while others may have a mouthful. As soon as that first tooth pokes through, be ready to keep it clean. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends using toothpaste that contains fluoride from the very beginning. A smear the size of a grain of rice is enough to clean the entire mouth. While fluoride is safe and beneficial in small amounts, it can be toxic when consumed in very large quantities. That is why it is always very important to use only the recommended amount of toothpaste and to supervise your baby at all times when brushing teeth.

Nail care

Trimming your 10-month-old’s nails can be an all-out war, since he or she may be far more interested in exploring the surroundings than sitting still. Unless you want to pin your baby down and force the issue, it may be easier to just trim or file them when your baby is asleep. Or, if you can distract him or her for a short period of time with a book or silly song, you may be able to tackle just a few fingers or toes at a time. While it may take you several attempts, eventually you will complete all 20 digits!

 Concerned about the products you’re using during bath time? Get a pediatrician’s perspective with Dr. Rachel Shnider.

Reviewed by Dr. Sara Connolly, July 2019

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