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Babies: To bathe (frequently) or not to bathe (frequently)?

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Molly Riley/AP

(Read caption) A recent blog post on Babble.com sparked a discussion of just how often parents should bathe their babies.

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"I Don't Bathe My Baby" is a blog post title designed to entice and annoy if ever one was written. It conjures up images of stark neglect, of a sad little infant huddled in a corner somewhere, covered in a filmy residue, with a stray Snickers wrapper adhered to his forearm.

And of course the blog post is about no such thing. The writer has two other children, she's busy, and the baby seems totally fine getting weekly baths, and seems to smell fine too. Plus:

According to the Mayo Clinic, there is no need to bathe a baby every day and bathing that frequently can actually lead to dry skin. As long as you are thoroughly wiping the diaper area, as well as neck and face, then baby is good to go. This makes total sense to me. It’s not like he’s touching every filthy thing he can find or running around and sweating a lot, so spot cleaning should be pretty sufficient.

An ABC report on the blog post describes the reader response to the seldom-bathed baby as an "online firestorm" (which was, of course, "unleashed"). Much of that firestorm, as represented by the story's comments, looks like this:

"LOL thank you! Folks are horrified when they hear how seldom my kids are bathed."

"To all the nay sayers...what are you doing with your infants necessitating a full daily bath?"

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