September 27, 2006,
R.L. asks from Palmetto, FL on August 02, 2006
Starting Solid Foods - Palmetto,FL
We have recently started feeding our 4 month old daughter solid foods. I should say we are attempting to feed her solid foods. Per the doctor's advice, we have been trying rice cereal, both with formula and without. Hayley gets mad every time we try to give her food off the spoon. She turns away every time the spoon is near her face or starts to cry if I actually get the food into her mouth. Does anyone have advice on how to start solid foods?
So What Happened?â„¢
I want to thank you all for responding. I can't believe how many messages I got in response to my request for advice. I have not tried to feed her anything other than formula for the last few days. It seemed apparent to me that she wasn't interested in eating. But I was not sure if I should keep trying or wait. I will keep trying every few days or so until she seems like she is interested. I needed advice from other mothers on how to handle the situation and that is just what I got. Thank you!
F.M. answers from Jacksonville on August 10, 2006
Wal mart sells food feeders. It has a nipple like a bottle. I used one for about 2 weeks then my daughter would eat food off of a spoon
C.V. answers from Miami on August 08, 2006
What kind of spoon are you using? My daughter would only eat off the plastic coated ones at first. Good luck!
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D.L. answers from Ocala on August 05, 2006
try adding just a tad of baby applesauce with it, and just talk to her she sounds like she is afraid of the spoon because it is an "unknown", so just try soothing talk while you are trying to feed her and the sweet taste of the applesauce might get her to realize it is not so bad. That cereal is kind of bland.
D. answers from Pensacola on August 02, 2006
Hi, R.. I know it can be frustrating. As the mother of three (12-yr-old, 5-yr-old, and 19-month-old), this is what I've learned about solid foods. ;-) I'm sure your pediatrician has told you that a child doesn't actually need anything but breast milk or formula for the first year. Everyone thinks they need to start babies on cereal, but your really don't. It sounds to me as though Hayley is telling you in the only way she can that she isn't ready. I would put it aside for now and try again in a month. And if she isn't ready then, put it away for another month. She will eventually realize that you and her father are eating real food and she'll want the same thing. I promise! Good luck to you. It will work out fine and I'm sure you're doing a great job!
R.K. answers from Tampa on August 03, 2006
When my first child started solid foods, such as the baby cereal, although it's been 18 years! (LOL) I still remember mixing the cereal with the formula and having purchased a cereal feeder which was similar to the bottle, vs. the spoon method. In addition, once she was ready for the spoon feeding, although it was a huge mess- I let her spend time feeding herself - at the advice of my pediatrician. And this was actually a great idea. She became such an independent child in every way and learned to do many things for herself. My 2nd child was opposite and I did not early on give her this freedom - instead - babied her more and she wanted to be a baby forever. It's better when they can learn to do things on their own. I didn't always make the 1st one feed herself - just always allowed her some time doing so. Good luck with this. Hope you can find that cereal feeder with the bottle style nipple - just has a larger opening.
J.W. answers from Sarasota on August 03, 2006
It is really hard at first starting a baby on solids. It is something new and they have the tongue reflex that wants to push everything out. My advise would be to wait for a week and then start trying at least once each day until she gets use to it. You can even try every other day. Go with the flow of your baby, if she starts getting mad it will just prolong her eating off the spoon. You may even notice that when you try new foods with her as well, that she won't seem to like them. Sometimes it takes up to 10 times of trying a new food for them to realize they actually do like it, and that they are just refusing the new taste in their mouth. And above all, just be patient with her. Eventually she will get use to it and love it.
Good luck and I hope this helps.
N.T. answers from Lakeland on August 03, 2006
Hi R., I have two sons, 1 yr. and 2 1/2 yrs. My oldest did not start solids until he was 6mo. and still had similar problems, however, my youngest started at around 4mo and did great. Again as others have said it depends on the child maybe your little one is not ready yet. But my other question would be what consistency are you making the cereal? My sons did better with very liquid cereal to start and then I would hold them in my lap with one arm behind me and I would hold the other hand and tilt them a little and spoon the cereal in, again with a very liquid consistency. I know this may be hard to comprehend in writing so in other words hold them like you are feeding them a bottle but with one of their arms behind you and spoon the cereal in. If nothing works and your little one is gaining weight fine and taking a bottle well I would not push the issue try again as she gets a little older.
Lots of Luck
J.B. answers from Phoenix on August 02, 2006
Do NOT put cereal in a bottle. If Hayley cannot take food from a spoon, then she is not ready.
This website is a good guide to starting solids.
Here are a few "signs" that may indicate your baby is ready for Solid Foods:
Loss of tongue-thrust reflex (this allows baby to drink and swallow liquids with ease; with the tongue-thrust reflex still present, baby may simply "drink" in any solid foods presented)
Ability to let you know she is full from a "meal" with signs such as turning away from the bottle or breast
Ability to sit up and hold head up unassisted
Interest in your food (we tend to disagree with this one as when a baby reaches the age of 4-6 months, he is interested in everything and interested in putting everything in his mouth!)
Doubling of birth weight
My son will be six months old tomorrow and has yet to start solids. I will try avacados fist. I am skipping the cereal becuase it has no value. My son really only needs breast milk (or formula) for the first year.
Good Luck with what every you choose to do. :)
L.G. answers from Tampa on August 02, 2006
Actually, it is recommended by the AAP to hold off solids until 6 mos. If she isn't interested yet, I'd wait a while and then try again. She's still very young and may not be ready to try solids. I also started with Rice Cereal and have since learned that it can cause constipation, just something to watch out for. In a couple of months, maybe try some yellow veggies, like squash or sweet potato, or even the cereal again. She may be ready to eat them then.
D. answers from Tampa on August 02, 2006
Hi. I work in medicine and I can tell you that 4 months is very young for solids unless you have a very big baby that is not sleeping well and has no more gag reflex. My recommendation as a mother and as a medical professional would be to let the baby start playing with the spoon. No food on it. If you want to continue trying I would increase the hole in your nipple and add a teespoon or 2 of rice cereal to the formula in one bottle first and then 2 bottles a day. Go slow and watch for choking and constipation. I would reattempt the spoon thing at closer to 6 months. All of the nutrition a baby under 1 year old needs comes from formula or breast milk so do not panic! I have many children that did not eat solids for a long time and grew up perfectly and strong, healthy and beautiful. Good Luck!!
PS Studies have recently found that the earlier you feed your baby solids, the more you can increase their chances of obesity.
E.L. answers from Pensacola on August 03, 2006
I don't think she is ready. Are you breastfeeding? If you are she is getting all the nourishment she needs. I waited until both of my two kids (now 6 yrs & 2 yrs) were between 6 - 8 months old before even trying rice cereal. I also waited until they turned 2 years old before they had any meat. I stopped breastfeeding when they turned 2 years old. Your best bet is to do what you feel is right. No one knows your children better than you. Gut instinct is always good to follow.