Healthier Alternatives to Bubble Baths for Kids

by on January 16th, 2011
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My three-year-old daughter was a huge fan of bubble baths for several months. Almost every night, we would run a warm bath overflowing with foamy white bubbles. However, at around this time, she started experiencing urinary incontinence and said that it hurt to pee. I got in touch with her pediatrician and found out that she was suffering from recurrent urinary tract infections, and the bubble baths were to blame. Bubble baths can not only irritate the urinary tract and make it more prone to infections, but can also cause dry skin and rashes.

Fortunately, surrendering bubble bath didn’t have to mean surrendering bath-time fun. I came up with several solutions to make bath time enjoyable for my daughter, and she doesn’t miss her bubble baths at all. Here are some healthier alternatives to bubble bath.

Fragrant Oils

Check with your doctor before using these, since children with very sensitive skin and respiratory conditions may sometimes react poorly to it. If you get the go-ahead from your practitioner, consider using fun, scented oils to both make bath time more enjoyable and to provide therapeutic relief. Lavender oil is promoted to ease insomnia, while children love the fresh fruity scents of orange oil and the candy-like aromas of mint and vanilla. These are a very health alternative to bubble bath and can be just as much fun.

Food Coloring

Every bath my daughter has taken in the last three months has been bright green. I started doing this occasionally when she was a young toddler, and it’s now become part of our nightly ritual. Make your child’s baths her favorite color with a few drops of food coloring. Bonus points: use this as an educational tool to teach your child how to mix secondary colors. Food coloring is made to be safe enough for direct ingestion, and it poses no side effects when added to bath water.

Bath Bombs

Although these can be expensive (especially if you use them every night) bath bombs are just as much fun as bubble bath and generally safer and healthier. These fizzy balls of delight release effervescence into your child’s bath water, providing the same sort of enjoyment as bubble baths. My daughter’s favorites are “dinosaur eggs,” which contain tiny toy dinos inside the fizzy bath bombs.

Healthier alternatives to bubble baths are out there, so, if your child can’t tolerate bubble baths for whatever reason, consider switching to a safer option. By making healthier choices in your child’s bath-time fun, you can help to protect his health without surrendering the enjoyment of an evening bubble-bath.


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