At What Temperature Should Your Bath Be?

Bathing water temperature may not pose a significant safety hazard to the mature persons, but it is to the kids and the elderly, especially those with slow movements and impaired senses. It is a no-brainer; hot water will cause burns. More so, though not at the temperature that causes burns, it can also get dangerous. On the other hand, cold bathing water is risky to infants, young adults, and children. You may now wonder; what temperature should your bath be?

Luckily, this article will give an insight into everything you need to know about bathing water. You may need to relax and continue reading. Bath water has an ideal temperature which when altered may be risky. Are you eager to know the suitable bath water temperature? Check also our tips on where to shower when traveling. Check out the following;

Suitable Bath Water Temperature

The ideal temperature for bathing water gets decided based on personal preferences of many people. The perfect bath water temperature gets recommended to be a degree or two higher than your average body temperature. But people come with different preferences and to some, the recommended temperature may not suit them. People should get cautious of their water temperatures as it may affect them differently. Bathing water above 39 degrees Celsius or 102.2 Fahrenheit causes a physiological effect that leads to compromise a person’s health.

It is important to note that our bodies perceive temperature by comparing our internal temperature and that of the environment. Your bathroom air temperature should be at a comfortable range adaptable by your body before deciding on the temperature to use for your bathing water. The temperature in the bathroom air, and that in your bathing water should have slight or no difference at all. Your body then won’t have to go through many changes to compensate for the temperature difference between the two. But some people prefer bathing with very hot water and leaves us wondering if it’s ideal for bathing. Here is the insight.


Is Very Hot Water Ideal For Bathing?

Too hot water cause burns. The extent of the damage gets determined by the fragility of your skin. The duration at which the very hot water was in contact also determines the damage. Very hot water ranges from 46 – 50 degrees Celsius (114.8 – 122 Fahrenheit). Water within this range is quite hot for bathing with, but you can make it suitable by adding some cold water.

You can also leave it for a while to lose heat into the environment until it reaches a temperature ideal for bathing. But temperatures ranging from 60 – 70 degrees Celsius (140 – 158 Fahrenheit) are a real danger even when exposed for a short term. In this regard, you may question what temperature suits a hot water bath. It is as follows;

Temperatures Suitable for a Hot Water Bath

Hot bathing water for the elderly should not exceed 42 degrees Celsius (107.6 Fahrenheit). If the elderly is renowned for impaired temperature perception and lives alone, his/her thermostat should get adjusted to slightly below 42 degrees Celsius (107.6 Fahrenheit). Same should get done to the elderly who responds quickly on contact with hot water. Burns may not result from water at this level, but it can affect the body in various ways. How fast one gets out of the water, and how long he/she has been in the water gets to determine the intensity of the damage done.

Blood vessels found on the skin’s surface dilate when in contact with hot water. As a result, blood flows from the body’s internal organs towards the skin’s surface. The body reacts this way as its way of dispelling excess heat to maintain the normal temperature level. But this excess blood flow is not good. Together with the subsequent compensatory mechanisms, it causes cardiovascular strain.

To the elderly, the heart starts working harder at 39 degrees Celsius (102.2 Fahrenheit), and it can result in a lot of problems. Now that you are aware of the right temperature for a hot bath, you may wonder if cold water is ideal for bathing. Continue reading to grasp some knowledge. You may also add essential oils for a relaxing bath.

Is Cold Water Ideal For Bathing?

Just like heat, cold water is dangerous. When the skin comes in contact with cold water, the blood vessels on the surface of the skin starts to narrow. As a result, the blood flow towards the internal organs increases. Because the increased blood flow returns to the heart, it means that the heart has to work even harder to remove excess blood from and around the heart vessels. The heart responds this way to ensure that the blood pressure maintains its normal range.

When you bath in water colder than your body temperature, your body loses heat to the environment. Immersing your body in water a degree or more than your body temperature can cause hypothermia and especially to the elderly.

But according to Medical Daily, cold water comes with surprising benefits. A cold shower sometimes gets regarded as a “James Bond Shower”. Are you eager to know why? Because bathing in cold water results in the following benefits to our skin and body.

  • Refined Skin and Hair

Cold showers help in maintaining our skin and hair by tightening our pores and cuticles and prevents them from being clogged. Hot water dries out the skin. According to Jessica Krant, lukewarm or ice-cold water prevents our skin from losing its natural oils quickly. Your pores do not shrink because of cold water; the skin tightens temporarily, and it constricts the blood flow. Cold water increases the hair’s ability to grasp the scalp and flattens the hair follicles. As a result, the hair becomes stronger, shinier, and healthier.

  • Enhances Weight Loss

Our bodies contain brown and white fat. When we consume excess calories, we accumulate white fat. Brown fat is good, and it helps keep us warm by generating heat. According to a diabetes center which is an affiliate of the Harvard Medical School, extreme cold activates the brown fat.

  • Stress Reduction

Jumping into a cold shower, or any water source like an ocean without first acclimating to it helps in stress tolerance and some diseases. A cold stimulus causes uric acid levels to decrease drastically. Glutathione, an excellent antioxidant responsible for the optimal performance of other oxidants, also increase.

  • Increased Alertness

Taking a cold morning shower or pouring yourself cold water may appear horrifying than soothing. But did you know that when we breathe in deeply as a way of responding to shock helps us in keeping warm? As a result, we take in more oxygen which in turn increases our heart rate. The blood then circulates through our entire body, giving us enough energy for the day.

  • Improved Circulation and Immunity

Cold water enhances blood around our organs, thereby improving circulation. As a result, some problems associated with the heart and skin gets prevented.

  • Muscle Soreness Recovery

Athletes are renowned for taking a cold shower after training to help reduce their muscle soreness. Cold water is equally effective after hitting the gym and want to relieve some delayed or onset muscle soreness.

  • Relieves Depression

When you take a cold bath, your skin’s cold receptors experience an intense impact. As a result, electrical impulses in overwhelming amounts get sent from the endings of your peripheral nerve to the brain. An antidepressive effect then gets developed and helps in boosting your moods.

You are now aware of your ideal water temperature for bathing, but have not discussed about our little bundles of joy ideal temperature for their bath water. It should be as follows;

water temperature

The Suitable Baby Bath Temperature

Most mothers, especially the new mothers struggle with the right temperature for their baby’s bathing water. The perfect temperature for your baby’s bathing water gets based on several factors like the weather and the age of the baby. When it comes to the newborns, you can never guess on his/her bathing water temperature. It is essential because newborns are not able to regulate their bodies’ temperature. New babies are renowned for losing heat four times quicker than adults.

The ideal temperature for a baby’s bath water should be between 36 degrees Celsius to 38 degrees Celsius (96.8 to 100.4 Fahrenheit). These temperatures are close to the body temperature of a baby. We may know the right bath water temperature for our infants and children but, are we aware of how to measure it? It is a question that troubles many mothers. If you are one of them, here is how to measure a baby’s bath water temperature.

How to Measure a Baby’s Bath Water Temperature

Dipping your elbow or wrist into the water is the best way to measure a baby’s bath water temperature. It is the ideal way to check if the water is too hot. Hands are not suitable for testing the water’s temperature because they tolerate temperatures higher than that. In this regard, elbows and wrists get preferred. Remember to stir the bath water before checking the temperature to ensure that the water is equal in temperature.

When your baby is in the bathtub, never add water, whether cold or hot. Ensure the water amount and temperature are right before immersing the baby into the tub. Alternatively, you can use an ideal baby water thermometer to measure the right temperature for your baby’s bath water. But not all thermometers are suitable to measure the temperature of a baby’s water. Read on for the insight.

Is a Regular Thermometer Ideal for Measuring the Baby’s Water Bath Temperature?

Traditional thermometers with mercury in glass have a limited range and are very fragile. Regarding this, they don’t get recommended for measuring a baby’s bath water temperature. The modern thermometers are digital, better and come with batteries. Unfortunately, they aren’t waterproof. They are therefore not your best choice. But you may ask if there are thermometers made specifically to measure baby bath temperatures. Check out the following;

Are There Baby Bath Thermometers?

Fortunately, the market gets flooded with many baby bath thermometers explicitly designed to measure your baby’s bathing water temperature. You may not trust yourself in using your wrist or elbow; the best option is to buy one of these reliable baby bath temperature thermometers. It is wise to create a fun bathing experience for your baby by choosing a thermometer that acts as a floating bath toy. But for an adult, here is how you can measure the bath water temperature.

How Do You Measure Bath Water Temperature?

Your bath water temperature should be close to your body temperature. Thanks to the advent of technology, today we find thermometers explicitly made to measure the temperature of your bathing water. Get one and use it before immersing your body in the bathtub water. Alternatively, if you trust your guts enough, you can use your hands to check if the water is hot enough.

water temperature


Taking a bath is part of our lives and inevitable, but we need to do so in the right water temperature. As illustrated above, different people use different bathwater temperatures. For example, the sick, elderly, infants, children, and adults. Whatever category you may be preparing the bathing water for, ensure that it contains the correct temperature to avoid any health risks and discomfort. If you are not aware of how to measure your bathing water temperature, the above methods will be handy. You may also read this article on how long should you wait to shower after tanning.