Baby Feeding/12 / 10 / 2015

Baby Solids

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Baby Solids

The Do’s and Don’ts of Starting Baby Solids

  • Does starting  baby solids kind of scare you?
  • Your baby’s been on the breast or bottle since her first day, and now you’re supposed to give her spoons of what? Real food?
  • Eventually we all eat real meals, so your baby needs to start sometime.
  • Even though we’re made to eat, the transition from liquids-only to a mix that includes solids is stressful – for everyone involved.
  • That said, arming yourself with some background knowledge can ease your anxieties and even make feeding fun!

Check out these do’s and don’ts for a few practical tips on starting solids.

Do:

  • Make sure that your baby is ready. As a new mum you might not have a clue as to when solids should start. Your baby’s doctor can give you the professional low-down on the medical facts on feeding. Along with that, you also need to wait until your baby is developmentally mature enough to begin. According to the Government of South Australia and Women’s and Children’s Hospital, signs to look for include your baby holding his head up on his own and sitting without support, the ability for your baby to control his tongue, interest in eating (or whatever other people are eating) and seeming hungry after a breast or bottle feeding.
  • Wait until your baby is roughly 6-months. This is typically the time when he’s developmentally ready to start solids. Keep in mind, ‘typically’ doesn’t equal everybody. Some babies run on their own schedules, meaning that they might take longer to start than others.
  • Look to see if your baby can actually chew. You might want to pull your hair out every time that she mouths a board book, but chomping down on everything around her shows you what her not-so-mature mouth can do.
  • Start slowly. Give your baby one to two teaspoons of a new food at a time. Begin with pureed foods that are bland to the taste buds.
  • Move on to chunky choices by 9-months. This doesn’t mean that you should offer heavily textured foods. Instead offer lumpier foods such as a pressed avocado or smooshed banana.
  • Continue giving your baby breast milk or formula until he is at least 12 months.

Don’t:

  • Add solids to your baby’s bottle. Shying away from solids at first isn’t a major catastrophe. Never try to entice him into eating by mixing cereal or another food with his liquid diet.
  • Leave him unattended. Never, ever, ever (did I emphasize ever enough yet?) leave your child unsupervised while he’s eating. This doesn’t mean that you must be two0inches from his face at all times. Simply sit within arms’ reach or stand where you can clearly see his face.
  • Stop trying. It’s likely that your baby won’t like every food on the first try. This doesn’t mean that you give up and promptly switch to something new. If he makes a funny face when you spoon up the carrots, keep trying. Re-introduce the food and give him more opportunities to fall in love with it!

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