Whether it’s conventional weaning or baby-led weaning, the consensus is that oldsters begin infants on solids at round six months previous. In particular circumstances, it may be at 4 months; for instance, if the kid has poor weight acquire, early introduction of solids could also be useful.
Signs that infants are able to be weaned embrace having the ability to sit with help in addition to having good head and neck management.
It just isn’t advisable to delay weaning past six months. Usually, by then, the kid must be uncovered to strong meals, and never simply milk, to get the vitamins he wants.
The key factor is to be watchful to forestall choking, a better danger in baby-led weaning in contrast with the standard approach.
With complete meals objects, accidents might happen. Generally, although, finger-sized meals is an efficient measurement for infants. Even with pureed meals, you will need to watch the kid whereas feeding for choking dangers.
Baby-led weaning is contra-indicated in some circumstances, comparable to for infants who might have swallowing difficulties; who have an anatomic dysfunction comparable to a cleft palate or tongue tie; or infants with neurological or genetic problems.
Another precaution is to evaluate the danger of meals allergic reactions. Symptoms embrace hives across the mouth, rashes on the physique or swollen eyes.
Before the kid is a 12 months previous, don’t put salt and seasoning in his meals as a result of his kidneys aren’t mature sufficient to deal with the sodium load. Avoid added sugar to forestall a candy tooth.
The benefit of baby-led weaning is that meals doesn’t should be blended. It gives a full sensory expertise. It usually helps to forestall choosy consuming.
The drawback is that infants could be pissed off when they’re unable to select up the meals.
Caregivers is probably not sure of the quantity of meals eaten if it finally ends up on the face and palms. It is messy and tough to do when consuming out. Sometimes, caregivers concentrate on fruit and greens, and iron-rich meat tends to be launched later.
In distinction, with spoon-feeding, all kinds of meals could be mashed or blended and vitamin consumption is monitored simply. The drawback is that typically, there’s an overdependence on meals which can be pureed, affecting chewing expertise.
• Information supplied by Ms Tan Shiling, a senior dietitian at Mount Alvernia Hospital.