Toddlers are notoriously contradictory. Of course they love bananas today, but they’ll definitely throw out the worst shape in the world if you try to get them to eat one tomorrow. . . after buying two bunches in preparation. Getting them to do something they don’t want to do is what will haunt my nightmares in the future (think I’m dramatic? Just wait until that happens to you), and drinking water is – usually – one of those. Huge anger triggers for my kids, ages 3 and 1. That is, unless they’re in the bath. There is something about being surrounded by H2O that makes them suddenly thirsty. It’s a lot working to cleanse their squirming selves and keep them from drinking the bathwater at the same time (cardio day is everyday here!).
Some days I just wanna let it slide – how bad can drinking be the water to be right? – but then I remember they are probably – rather certainly – peeing in there and, yeah, it’s just disgusting. But is it also harmful? POPSUGAR spoke to two doctors to find out if drinking bath water can make toddlers sick.
Can toddlers get sick from drinking bath water?
Like many things parents worry about (read: Google obsessively at 2 a.m.), the answer to whether toddlers can get sick from drinking bath water depends on the child and the situation. If they drink just a little, it’s okay. If they drink a lot, then yes, they can get sick or vomit, depending on Charina Ramirez, MD, pediatric gastroenterologist at Children’s Health in Dallas and associate professor at UT Southwestern.
“As a general rule, drinking bath water is not dangerous for toddlers, but of course it is NOT recommended,” said Dr Ramirez. “Having said that, there are several things that can be found in bath water, such as soap, shampoo, feces and maybe urine that can contaminate the water. Depending on the contents of the bath water. ‘Bath water and the amount of bath water swallowed, toddlers may have an “upset tummy.” This can manifest as stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhea. ”
I just wanna let it slide – how bad can he drink the water to be right? – but then I remember they are probably – rather certainly – peeing in there and, yeah, it’s just disgusting.
Rashmi Jain, MD, pediatrician based in Irvine, Calif., And founder of a BabiesMD.com pediatric telemedicine service, agreed that drinking bath water is unlikely to lead to a medical emergency. In addition, since the urine is sterile, swallowing some diluted urine in the bath does not present a huge risk. “If there is stool in the bathwater, it could pose a health risk,” Dr Jain said. “Most parents, however, usually drain the bath immediately, clean the tub, and then reshuffle the child, so the chances of a toddler swallowing bacteria / fecal laden water are very low. probable.
She agreed with Dr Ramirez that drinking diluted soap or bath water could cause an upset stomach, although just a little is “unlikely to justify an emergency room visit or gastric lavage to empty the contents. from a child’s stomach. “
“Remember that the taste of soapy water is not favorable enough for a child to want to drink it from a full glass,” said Dr Jain. “They can take a sip or a sip while playing in the water, but they’ll probably end up spitting out most of it before they even swallow it. Ultimately, the few drops or sips that a child might even ingesting is not enough to make young children sick or be harmful to their health. “
How can you prevent your children from drinking bath water?
When you say “no” doesn’t work (LOL), there are a few other easy ways to get your kids to stop drinking bath water. “Toddlers can drink water during the day to avoid feeling thirsty when taking a bath,” Dr. Ramirez suggested. “Also, avoid bringing bath toys like spoons, cups and bowls so that the toddler won’t be tempted to use them for drinking bath water.
Dr Jain suggested “shifting the focus”, which means “redirecting their attention and energy to another desirable activity that is more rewarding or enjoyable”. She explained, “Children thrive on the individual attention of their parents. Now is a great time to bond with your little one and give them the focus they’ve been fighting for all day. They will give up bad behavior in an instant. if they can get your full attention. Create a game they play with you when they are in the water … for the toddler who insists on drinking bath water, stress that this water is for bath time and not for the drink. If the child is thirsty, a parent can offer a bottle of water to drink while sitting in the tub. “
What can you do if your little one drinks too much bath water?
First of all, stay calm. Dr Jain reminded parents that children are just exploring their surroundings at this age. “These are times when we need to appreciate their innocence and keep reinforcing desired behaviors over and over so that they can make it part of their own inherent understanding of right and wrong .. Fortunately, a sip of soapy water is not dangerous for our toddlers “health and, hopefully, tastes bad enough not to want to do it again”.
As with anything you worry about your child’s ingestion, Dr. Ramirez recommended calling Poison Control (1-800-222-1222) if you’re concerned that your little one is drinking it. bath water. Dr Ramirez added: “If the child has more than four episodes of vomiting in an hour after drinking the bathwater, parents should see a doctor or take their child to the emergency room.” Listen to your instincts here, parents.
What about infants?
Keep in mind that toddlers (ages 1-3) are different from infants (ages 0-12 months). Dr Ramirez said: “Infants under 6 months of age should not be given extra water other than breast milk and / or formula. Infants aged 6 to 12 months should have [a] limited amount of water (up to two ounces per day). Children under the age of one who consume too much water on their own can lead to sodium abnormalities (hyponatremia), which can be dangerous. Finally, if parents have any concerns about their child, regardless of age, they should consult their pediatrician. “
If your toddler drinks bath water, it doesn’t have to be a medical emergency. However, it could make your little one sick or throw up, which is never fun as a parent. I started bringing a cup of water into the bathroom during bath time to offer when my kids insisted on drinking, and it really worked like a charm. Good luck!