In this section
Bath time is an essential part of caring for a child and is often part of the daily routine. However, there are a number of bathroom hazards, including risk of drowning, risk of scalds, electrical appliances and potential poisons.
Make sure that you are always there and paying attention when babies, toddlers or children under five years are in the bath.
Young children have very sensitive skin, which means that hot water can scald them very quickly. A safe temperature for a child’s bath is between 37°C and 38°C (or about 36°C for a newborn).
How can I change the temperature of the hot water that is
delivered to the bathroom? Will this affect the water temperature in all rooms
of the house (e.g. ensuite, kitchen, laundry) or do I have to arrange for these
to be done separately?
To prevent burns, hot water delivered to the bath, shower or
other areas used for personal hygiene should be at a maximum of 50°C. You
should contact a licensed plumber who can check your water heater and do this
for you. You will need to discuss your individual needs with the plumber, as
the tempering valve is usually installed to affect only the water temperature
in bathrooms or ensuites. The hot water delivered to other areas in the home,
such and kitchen and laundry, may remain unchanged, so you should be mindful if
your children have access to these areas and make sure these taps are also
Are bath toys safe for my child to play with?
Bath toys that are hollow or have holes for water to fill
them can sometimes become mouldy after being used for a while. Younger children
who chew on toys or drink the bath water may become sick from bacteria that
gets trapped inside them, so it is recommended that your child only plays with
bath toys that are sealed and designed in a way that does not trap water.
Alternatively, ensure that hollow bath toys are emptied, dried out and stored
out of water after use so that bacteria cannot grow inside them.
Also be aware of foam bath toys that young
children may chew on, which can cause a choking hazard if some of the foam
breaks off. Make sure any bath toy is appropriate for the age of your child and
meets Australian standards.
Developed by The Royal Children's Hospital Community Information in consultation with Life Saving Victoria. We acknowledge the input of RCH consumers and carers.
Reviewed October 2018.
Kids Health Info is supported by The Royal Children’s Hospital Foundation. To donate, visit
This information is intended to support, not replace, discussion with your doctor or healthcare professionals. The authors of these consumer health information handouts have made a considerable effort to ensure the information is accurate, up to date and easy to understand. The Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne accepts no responsibility for any inaccuracies, information perceived as misleading, or the success of any treatment regimen detailed in these handouts. Information contained in the handouts is updated regularly and therefore you should always check you are referring to the most recent version of the handout. The onus is on you, the user, to ensure that you have downloaded the most up-to-date version of a consumer health information handout.