When to wean a baby? How to wean a baby?
Two very important questions on every mother’s mind. I have a lot to say in answer to these questions so, here we go!
When to start weaning your baby?
Because weaning can be a daunting experience for your baby, you should look at it as a process rather than something that needs to be done in a particular frame of time.
Babies are different and they hit milestones at different times from each other. So don’t worry yourself with other babies and where they are in their development.
Once your baby starts to sit up straight, holds his head up, starts to show an interest in your food and can grab a carrot stick to chew on, then, your little miracle is showing good signs that they are ready to start munching.
With that said, once your baby completes their sixth month you can start the process of weaning them and slowly, step by step you can make them sail through it with the minimum anxiety.
” You can never go too slowly, but be sure to drop only one feeding every three or four days so that it takes about two weeks for the entire process. Drop the least preferred feedings first, which likely means the morning and bedtime feedings will be last to go. ” Says Freda Rosenfeld, former president of the New York Lactation Consultant Association.
How to wean your baby?
Right… Mush mush mush or carrot sticks..?
Bland or full of flavour?
If your baby is six months old you probably already have been giving him/her a smooth puree of some vegetable, which is absolutely fine and if you haven’t, don’t worry because the time has come. Please note there are no right or wrong methods as long as they work.
Please remember that milk matters, do not alter your milk feeding routine during the process of weaning, your baby will drop a feed when he / she is ready. The Department of Health recommends giving your toddler supplements that contain A, C and D vitamins if their milk is less than 500ml between the ages of 6 months to 5 years.
To start with, we are going to go for age-stage:
- From around four and a half months to seven, go for smooth pureed at home fresh vegetables such as carrots and broccoli. Gradually making it thicker and lumpier as your baby starts to chew more.
- From around seven to ten months, now you can try to get them a more textured meals and more flavoured. you can start to set them with their own plates. It is okay in fact in some other countries they give the infants all sorts of vegetables with all sorts of flavours.. Not the hot stuff though..!
- Hey..! Ten to twelve months old and beyond, your baby really wants what’s on your plate mummy! Yes, they are ready now you can give them some of yours, smaller portion though! Hasn’t life just got a lot easier no more cooking two different meals. Please cross the following out of your baby’s menu, sugar, honey, added salt, fish with high levels of mercury and whole nuts.
- May be you’ll find this one hard to believe: Did you know that garlic is one favoured flavour amongst toddlers?
It is important to get the following weaning aids:
- Bibs, crumb catcher and cloths.
- Slow cooker or a steamer.
- A blender or a food processor.
- Small containers or little tubs.
You can find all of the above here.
Good Weaning Practices:
- Relax, enjoy and give lots of encouragement and giggles.
- Wean your baby at home in their familiar surroundings.
- Let them play with the food, it’s not going to end up in their mouths always. It’s a hit and a miss.. Mummy!
- Persist and persevere it will take a while for them to like a flavour.
- Reduce the distractions to a minimum.
- Keep their milk routine.
The No Nos of weaning:
- Do not leave your baby on his/her own while they are feeding.
- Do not add sugar or salt to make them like it more.
- Do not choose a time when your baby is full, grumpy, tired or too hungry.
- Do not start weaning before your baby reach 6 months old.
- Do not reuse leftovers.
Happy weaning and please get in touch if you need any help with anything, and don’t forget to always:
BOND LOVE AND LAUGH A LOT.