Worried about the stage when you have to start your baby on solid foods? Don't worry. We've got you covered! When your baby turns 6 months old, you can start introducing solid food, but until then, sit tight!
Some parents might find this milestone very hard to put into action but we'll help make it very easy for you. Here are 4 easy steps to follow when introducing solid food to your baby:
1. Ready set go
Your baby might be 6 months old but in order to make introducing solid food easier, you must also check if your baby is physically ready too. The infant should have significant head and neck control and should be able to sit upright with support. Apart from these signs, your baby should also show interest in solid food by trying to grab food on the table or making chewing motions.
2. Easy 'peasy'
Introducing solid food to your baby will be easy as long as you start with basic and simple foods. For the first day, oatmeal or rice cereal is a good option. These food types are easy to digest and could be mixed in with breast milk or formula. Alternates for oatmeal and rice cereal, you can try feeding pureed or softened carrots, bananas, peaches or sweet potatoes, since they are equally great as well. It is important that a mixture of tastes and textures are presented to your baby early on. This will make introduction of other types of solid food less of a fight with your baby in the future.
To make introducing solid food less of a burden, make sure that you have the proper equipment and tools for feeding. A high chair is absolutely recommended. Buy lots of waterproof or plastic bibs since your baby will really need it. Colourful and unbreakable plates, bowls and glasses are vital too. Your baby will probably throw these away numerous times during every feeding. If you can find fun feeding utensils like an airplane spoon with a runway plate or a light-up plate with a musical glass, it will make your life easier.
4. No stress
When introducing solid foods to your baby, don’t stress with the mess. If your baby is dipping fingers in the oatmeal or dribbling out the mashed fruit, allow it. Feeding babies are expectedly messy and slow. Stay patient and remain calm. What’s important is that your baby is eating solid foods happily. To make cleanups easier, spread several layers of newspapers or plastic under the high chair. Get yourself ready with a wet washcloth too.
Introducing solid food to your baby should be done gradually and with care. Do not leave your child alone during feeding times since choking is always a risk in young babies. Also, watch out for any allergic reactions your baby might have to certain food types. This could be visible in signs like rashes, vomiting and diarrhea.