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Baby Weaning & Introducing Solids – Time To Get Saucy!

It’s time to get saucy! That’s right, it’s time to introduce your little one to the wonderful world of solid foods. While this can be an exciting time, it can also be overwhelming. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with this expert guide to introducing solid foods.

We’ll cover:

  • When to start on solid foods
  • Signs of readiness
  • How to start solid foods
  • Common challenges and how to overcome them

When Do I Start My Baby On Solid Foods?

First things first, let’s talk about when to start. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends waiting until your baby is around 6 months old before introducing solid foods. However, every baby is different, so it’s important to look for signs of readiness.

Signs of readiness

The NHS outlines the following signs that a baby is ready for solids when:

  • They stay in a sitting position and hold their head steady
  • They coordinate their eyes, hands, and mouth so they can look at the food, pick it up and put it in their mouth by themselves
  • They swallow food (rather than spit it back out)

The following are often misconstrued and are NOT necessarily signs that your baby is ready for solids:

  • Chewing their fists
  • Waking up in the night (more than usual)
  • Wanting extra milk feeds

How To Start Solid Foods

In the beginning your baby will only need a small amount of food before their usual milk feed. Do not worry about how much they eat. The most important thing is getting them used to new tastes and textures and learning how to move solid foods around their mouths and swallow them.

This NHS article goes into detail, but they key points are:

  • Start with small amounts.
  • Offer new foods one at a time to check for allergies.
  • Don’t force your baby to eat.
  • Offer a variety of foods to encourage a well-rounded diet.

Remember, introducing solid foods is a messy process, so be prepared for some food flinging and spoon-dodging.

Common Challenges

Introducing solid foods is not always easy, and parents may face some challenges. Here are some common challenges and solutions:

  • Refusal to eat: If your baby refuses to eat, try offering the food at a different time of day or in a different form, such as a different texture or mixed with a different food.
  • Constipation: Solid foods can sometimes cause constipation. Offer plenty of fluids and foods high in fibre to help keep things moving.
  • Allergies: Allergies can be a concern when introducing new foods. Start with small amounts and watch for signs of an allergic reaction, such as hives, vomiting, or wheezing.

Introducing solid foods is an exciting milestone in your baby’s development. Just remember to look for signs of readiness, start with small amounts, offer a variety of foods, and be prepared for some messy moments. And who knows, maybe your baby will even discover their new favourite food – or use it as a weapon against you during mealtime negotiations.

Bon appétit!

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