104 answers

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?

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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!

Featured Answers

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

What kind of spoon are you using? My daughter would only eat off the plastic coated ones at first. Good luck!

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.

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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!

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.

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.
J.

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
N.

R.,
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.
http://www.wholesomebabyfood.com/solids.htm

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. :)

Louise

Hi R.,

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.

Good luck!

L.

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.

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.

I have a 5 month old so I know exactly what you are going through. I found with my daughter that she didn't like the rice cereal (it made her cry), we had to use the oatmeal cereal. Also, try mixing it with fruit juice (pear juice has been most successful for us). We mixed it really thin and let her suck the food off of the spoon instead of just spooning it into her mouth. She does really well now eating just about anything. I hope this is helpful! Good Luck!

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

The official time table to start solid foods is between 4 and 6 months. I personally think 4 months is too early. Your baby will give you cues as to when she's ready to start on solids. You'll notice her being very interested in your foods. She's not behind if she doesn't start until 6 months, but don't wait for too long after that.

R.,
I am sorry to hear that your having a hard time with this issue, but remember it is very common;just keep on trying and don't give up. Now my second child did not like the spoon so I had to put a little bit on my finger and put it in her mouth and I know that sounds nasty but it worked and about a week or 2 I slowly added the spoon and she was ok. Good luck!!
J. S

R.,

Hi, my name is R. and I have a 3 year old and an 18 month old. I too started solids with my first born at 4 months and she refused for the longest time. We feel because we pushed it so much that she rejected the jar food most of the time and just wanted a bottle. With our second one we waited until she showed interest in eating our food and then introduced her to cereal. She was 5 months old. But both of my girls did not like to eat rice cereal. They both ate oatmeal and loved it. Maybe your little one would prefer oatmeal too. We are pregnant again and this time if our baby rejects the cereal we will wait a few days or so and not push the issue. As long as you get your baby to eat a little bit each day by six months old, you should be good to go. Good Luck!!

Dear R.,
My advice is to wait a couple of weeks and try again. When your baby starts showing interest in what you're eating, then is the time to try. Most doctors are now saying it is much better to wait longer before you try solid food, because the baby's system may not be developed enough to digest the solid food. We started at 5 1/2 months and he was definitely ready for it. I never have a problem with him not wanting food and as soon as he turns away repeatedly or keeps his mouth closed, I stop. I want eating to be enjoyable, not stressful. Don't force your baby, whatever you do. Good luck.

I had the same problem with my daughter, but they started her at one month! They also have a special bottle with a wide nipple that you can try. With my son, who is almost 2 now, I started at 4 months but then stopped and tried again at 6. It was much much easier at 6 months. I would not force it. Just try every couple of day with a couple of teaspoons of cereal. If she really fights it, then put it off till 6 months. You will not believe how much easier it is.
D.

I would just put it in the bottle at this time and then try again in a couple of weeks.

if she turns away and gets mad, she isnt ready. I tried to start my daughter on solids at 6 months and she just wasnt ready till she was almost 9 months. Plus solid food before a year is just for teaching not sustaining. when our daughter was ready we put her own our lap and let her feed herself mashed bananas, she liked having the control.

I agree with the mom who suggested to wait a little while longer. We didn't start to introduce solids to our daughter until she was 6 months. Your daughter still has time. One thing that I tried with my daughter was (and this is kind of messy, but it worked) to put a little of the cereal on my finger and let her take it from my finger. Then once she tasted it and wanted to try more, I would use the spoon. The first week or so of trying solid foods with my daughter I used a combination of my finger and the spoon until she was used to the spoon. Good luck.

Our daughter did not care for the rice cereal by itself at all! We mixed the rice cereal with a fruit or veggie and she ate it right up. Also we found that she really loves, more so than the rice, the oatmeal cereal. Give both of those things a try. Good Luck!

Hi R..
Neither of my two daughters started solids until 5/6 months, and that was fine with my pediatrician. I breastfed, though, so when we did start cereal we mixed it with breastmilk for the first week, then just warm water by week two.
I was always told not to give solids until the baby could sit up, and did not have that reflex where when you put something in their mouth,that tey push it back out with their tongue (sorry, I can't remember the term!)

At any rate, the standard with both my girls, from their pediatrician, was just to introduce solids by 6 months. I'd say, just wait and then try again--don't worry about it, maybe she's just not ready or wanting yet!

J.

HI R.,
I am mother of 3 and have found our children teach us alot , even as babies. They teach us to be patient and what their needs are , we just have to learn to read their body lanuguage when they can't talk. Hayley may not be ready for solids. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, it is not recommended to start solids until 6 months ( I know we see and hear 4-6 months) I find when babies will not take food from a spoon it is one of a couple of things, A. they are not ready, B. there maybe an underlying allergy so you need to try oatmeal or if she is just on breastmilk , make sure it is dairy free, no formula or C. it is a texture situation, they can not process or move the food to the back of their mouth. The last tends to be in babies who may have had some difficulty breastfeeding/latching or messy bottle eaters. Then you may want to see an occupational or speech therapist to learn exercises to correct this. My guess would be Hayley is not ready. Signs of readiness to spoon feed and a need to spoon feed are: waking up more at night for food than she normally does, grabbing your spoon or fork while you are eating, great head support and signs of sitting up with soem assistance etc.. Solid foods do not have as many calories per serving as does breastmilk or formula per ounce. So she may just need an ounce or so more than what she is already taking or longer feeds at the breast to get more hind milk..
Good luck
A.

Hi R.,
seems like you've gotten a ton of information already so I hope this isn't too much of a repeat :-)
If you breastfeed, I recommend waiting until 6 months and then only offer food after the breast, as a supplement. Breastfed babies don't need regular food til then. If you are formula feeding, I'm not really sure if the 6 month rule applies but I can tell you that there are other really good 1st foods instead of cereal. Avacado is very good for babies, easily digestable and most like it. (mix w/ a little formula or breastmilk), same for banana. good luck

R., I NOTICED THAT MANY PEOPLE RESPONDED TO YOUR CONCERN. I AM NOT SURE IF YOU WILL READ THIS BECAUSE IT SEEMS THAT A BUNCH OF ADVICE HAS BEEN THROWN YOUR WAY. IF YOU DO, I WOULD LIKE TO SHARE MY THOUGHTS WITH YOU. I AM A NURSE WITH FOUR YEARS OF PEDIATRIC AND NEWBORN NURSERY EXPOSURE. PLEASE, DO NOT PUT ANY RICE CEREAL IN A BOTTLE. THAT IS A BIG NO NO. WE DO NOT DRINK OUR FOOD IN A BOTTLE, YOUR BABY DOES NOT NEED TO EITHER. THE POINT OF THE SPOON FEEDING IS TO TEACH THE BABY THE CONCEPT OF CHEWING, BREATHING AND SWALLOWING AT THE SAME TIME. THROWING IT ALL IN THE BOTTLE TEACHES NO SKILLS, IT WILL MAKE THE BABY FAT FOR NO REASON. YOU CAN TAKE YOUR TIME WITH THE SPOON FEEDINGS, EVEN IF THE BABY DOES NOT CATCH ON FOR A MONTH OR SO. I HAVE ONE CHILD, 21 MONTHS. THIS PLAN SEEMED TO WORK FOR ME AT 4 MONTHS OF AGE..

-6AM BOTTLE
-10AM RICE CEREAL WITH A SPOON (BABY SHOULD BE HUNGRY AT THIS POINT)FOLLOWED BY A BOTTLE
-2PM BOTTLE
-6PM BOTTLE
-10PM BOTTLE

I HOPE THIS HELPS YOU. FEEL FREE TO CONTACT ME IF YOU HAVE ANY OTHER QUESTIONS. ALSO, I STARTED WITH VEGGIES AT 5 MONTHS BEFORE FRUITS. I WANTED HIM TO LIKE VEGGIES BEFORE THE SWEET STUFF, IT REALLY WORKED!! GOOD LUCK, M.

R.- Your 4 month old is doing her best to tell you she doesn't want it, so why push it? There is really no medical reason to start solid foods at that tender age, and lots of ancedotal reasons not to. Early solids have been liked to food allergies and obesity later in life. Your child will have the next 70+ years to eat "real food," there is no reason to rush it now. At 4 months old, most babies still have a reflex that causes their tongue to thrust forward and push anything that gets near their mouth out. It is a life saving reflex-why counteract that. Really, as long as you are nursing or providing formula for the 1st year, food serves little nutritional purpose and is more of an experience in taste and texture.
All of my kids started solids "late"- close to a year old. All four of them are great eaters. We never struggled with "getting it down" or had to clean up mushed peas from their inner ears. I wouldn't trade that for the world.
Relax, give your baby time to be a baby, and if you really want to give in to society and feed her early, try casually once a week until you actually get a positive response and then move forward. You will both be happier.
Blessings,
A.

Well, that sounds like a clear sign that shes not ready for the spoon. However, We tried mixing the cereal into her bottles to get her used to a different texture. (a special bottle, never use the one she is used to drinking normal formula/breastmilk from). Then after a week or 2, then begin starting her with the spoon. I let my 3 year old play with her spoon while sitting in her highchair eating the bitter cookies. She got used to it and started to use the spoon like a champ.
So, give it some time. Not all babies are ready right away.

It seems to me that your baby is telling you LOUD AND CLEAR that she IS NOT READY for solid foods yet. Babies move at their own pace, and just because someone else's child took cereal greedily at 4 months doesn't mean your child will - and it doesn't have anything to do with intelligence, fitness, good parenting, or anything other than her readiness for that particular thing. Unless your doctor had a very compelling reason that she MUST have cereal NOW (and actually, I would be very suspicious of that order because that would go against all current medical opinion - it's usually considered the YOUNGEST age that you may try solid food with a baby) I would just relax and wait.

Why not try again, with a spoon, in another few weeks? When your baby is ready, she will let you know. Fooling her by stuffing cereal into her bottle is not doing anything but diluting her precious milk - the most important thing you are feeding her right now. Meanwhile, why don't you call your doctor and ask him/her for advice?

If I sound a little pedantic, it is because I am a childbirth/postpartum educator (sorry :0)

You may want to give it a rest for a week or two, then try again. It sounds like she may not be ready yet.
You could try mixing a very small amount of baby apple sauce in to sweeten it. That has it's drawbacks though; if she gets used to the applesauce flavor, she may not want the cereal by itself...

Hmm...I have a 19 month old and a 4 month old. I don't really have much advice since both of mine like(d) the cereal. Do you hold her when you try to feed her? It works good for us when my husband holds the baby and I get down in front of them to feed her. She can see me and I can make faces at her, trying to make it more fun. All I can really say is don't give up. It'll come in time.

This is just a thought, do you think she may be telling you she isn't ready? With my son(now 3) we didn't start until he was 6 months old and he was a slow starter. Really, to this day, he prefers soft, mashed, pasta-like consistancy foods. My daughter (17 months) was the total opposite. Couldn't wait to get a spoon in her mouth, she eats everything we give her. We started her at 4 months only because she seemed interested. I think that the pediatricians recommend anywhere from 4-6 months starting, but all children are different. If she doesn't like it now, she might next week. Trust me, there is no hurry... bottle feeding ain't so bad when you have to start planning meals for a finicky eater! Good luck! ;0)

I know it sounds kind of weird, but I did test runs with the spoon first with nothing on it to test to see if she was wanting to try it. Once she took to the spoon, I tried the cereal. Doesn't hurt to try.

Hi R.,

Unless there is some medical reason to start her on solids, I have always read that you start them on solids when they are 6 months old. It really depends on the child and if they are interested and can physically move their mouth the correct way to eat. I would say don't push it. Most children will show a interest when they are ready to eat solids. They open thier mouth when you eat, like they are going to...or they try to take the utensil and try to put it in their mouth. If you have the time, I would research the subject a little and go with your gut "mother" feeling. Mom 's do know best most of the time.

Hello,
I am D. with Prenatal Plus - Yoga in Miami. I teach prenatal and postnatal w/baby yoga. Please don't force your baby to eat solids. Their digestive systems are not yet mature and usually until 6 months have no big desire for anything but mama's milk. Patience is key and feel free to come to a mommy & me class if you can to meet up with other new moms. Check out www.prenatalplusyoga.com for schedule. Good luck.
D. Geymayr, R.Y.T., HBCE, CD, CLD
Prenatal Plus - Yoga
____@____.com

Why is the doctor requesting that you start to introduce solids so early? I started my youngest at six months and she never liked any baby foods but did love to self feed finger foods. Best of luck to you!!!

Dear R.,

I ran a nursery for years and also have children. Here is how I did it. I waited until the child wanted food and showed they wanted food. Some kids are early and some don't want it early. I go by what the baby is saying. Why push it? When I put mine on cereal she got very, very constipated from the iron in the food. I switched to yogurt and my daughter loved it. I bought yogurt at the health food store and they have all kinds; cows milk or goat milk and even soy. There is a product called yo-baby that is organic. You can make your own rice cereal by cooking rice and then putting it into a blender. At least it is fresh. One tip, babies cannot have honey until they are over one year old. Something about botulism in honey.

D.

We had the same problem with the spoon, what we did was get a ceral feeder which looks like a bottle but has a bigger opening in the nipple for the ceral to come through and it worked perfect for us. After a few weeks of that we were able to slowly start using the spoon a little, than after a while we were able to go toatlly to the spoon.

R.,

It looks like you have gotten a lot of advice from other mothers so I'm just going to tell you that I have a 9 month old that was the same way...I started the cereal on the spoon and he hated it at first just like your daughter. I did the cereal in the bottle thing and he slowly adjusted to the spoon. I just kept introducing the cereal on the spoon to him every day and finally one day I made it thicker than I had been and ever since then he loves the cereal. Maybe try the bottle first. Whatever you decide I wish you the best of luck!

Hi R.,

I would say that the Doctor is giving you advice about "the average" (of probably thousands and more babies). So therefore you dont always have to follow everything exactly. There is no rule that says you have to feed your baby solids at 4 months. If she doesnt want it, then she doesnt want it. Try it again in another week, and maybe again a week later, eventually, when she wants it she will eat it.
Just keep in mind that babies have been around longer than Doctors and nature makes sure everything works right, too many people try to alter nature rather then just letting it work its course.
Dont worry , shes fine and then again maybe she doesnt like it. You might want to try mashing a banana and if needed mix it with a little breast milk/formula to thin it.
Good luck,
M.

Sassy has two products that I loved when my son went on real food. First the Sassy baby food nurser, a God send. You can get this at Walgreens. Second, the teething feeder, which you can put in whole foods, and the child can gum it. Also by Sassy. You can get this anywhere, Target, Walgreens. Hope this helps,S.

You may consider tring again in a couple of months...ask your pediatrician...The AAP advises starting solids between 4-6 months of age...maybe she just isn't ready yet...I'm sure your instincts will tell you which way to go with it.

S. Mills
Touched By An Angel
Childbirth services, Inc

When we started the twins on solid foods, we tried fruits first then veggies. I also put the fruit in with the rice ceral and then used oatmeal. The rice cereal doesn't taste the best by itself. Try a fruit that is "sweet" and see if she will take that.

If she doesn't, just continue to give her the bottle to her and try again another time. Don't get discouraged, because she just isn't used to it and it can take some time.

Half of Austin's food was all over his bib by the time we were finished. Ashleigh did fine with it. So there is hope! :)

As long as she is still getting the nutrients from her formula or breast milk, the solid foods will come when she is ready.

I think we started the twins on solids around 4-5 months, if not closer to 6 months...it seems like forever ago, and they are 2 now.

Good luck and keep us posted!

Take care,
God Bless,
J. D
Pensacola, FL

Mom to Ashleigh & Austin ~ 2

Hello R.,
I know how you feel, my 16 month old had a very hard time with food. She still hardly eats food, but my mother gave me the best answer " she will eat when she is ready and when she is hungry" never have truer words been spoken. She is still very picky but we give her 1 pedisure a daily just to make us feel better. She really enjoyed holding her own spoon and I got one too, that is how we finelly got her to take a spoon.Beware it is messy, but it works. We also notice that she will only eat when the family is eating together,she will not eat if I am trying to feed only her we all have to sit at the table and eat with her.Hope this helps.

All babies are different, and some do need food at 4mos - use YOUR best judgement on if she is ready. My daughter (Kaitlyn, now 7mos) was breastfed, and I wasn't very successful with pumping (I could usually only get out an ounce or two), so I didn't have very much breastmilk to mix the cereal with. She hated formula. She also couldn't wait for the solid foods until she was six months - it just wasn't happening - she was HUNGRY. We started at 4mos too. And, she wasn't yet ready for cereal via spoon. I know that what I'm about to say is frowned upon by many, but it worked for us. We had to get a baby food nurser. It's like a bottle, but the nipple has a larger hole, and it has a plunger to suction push the food up so she doesn't get gas. Toys and Babies R Us has them, they're made by Sassy. The quality of them isn't very good (the bottoms keep messing up the threads when we screw them on), but it's the only nurser I was able to find. At first, I would mix up just an ounce of plain rice cereal for her bedtime feeding. You have to make it kind of thick so it doesn't come out of the nipple hole too fast, but not so thick it won't come out at all. It's a fine line :) Anyway, then I would breastfeed after giving her the rice cereal. At first, she resisted the cereal a bit, but not as bad as she did with the spoon. After 3-4 days, the Dr. said she could try another type of food, like another cereal. Instead, I switched her to the rice cereal with banannas. She liked that one much better. After about two-three weeks on the cereal, I started feeding her baby food via spoon for lunch only at first, since if she had a reaction to something, I didn't want it to be in the middle of the night. After that, I'd introduce a new food about every 2 days. Once she'd tried all the fruits and veggies (no meats till 6mos, as per her Dr.), with no reactions to anything, I started giving her baby food for dinner, and cut back the amount of her cereal.

Eventually, as she moved to more cereal for breakfast and bedtime, I had to use formula to mix the cereal. It took me a _long_ time just to get her used to the formula, so at least you've got a headstart over us.

Now, she still has her morning cereal with the nurser. It's less messy than cereal via spoon (that stuff is like glue). All other meals are via spoon, except if we're traveling somewhere, and I don't have access to a high chair, then sometimes I'll put baby food in the nurser. It really helps make things easier for us in some situations.

Hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions - we just went through all the same stuff not too long ago! :)

My mother fed me rice cereal mixed with my formula through a bottle for a few weeks. She cut holes in the nipples to get the rice through and she said in a manner of a day I was loving it. You may want to try this baby step. Once your daughter gets used to the taste, you can move her to the spoon....Two new concepts: solid food and feeding with a spoon may be too much to handle. Try the bottle with the new food first, then migrate to a new way of eating. It may work :-).

HI,
I am a mom of three. Two girls ages 15 and 12 and a surprise boy 14 months. My baby boy sounds like your baby at four months old. Ryan is still picky and loves his bottle. We are always giving him tastes of our foods even now and he rarely eats much. My older daughters took to food easier and faster. The best thing to do is keep trying. If at first they reject wait a day and try again. Rice cereal is first due to allergies etc. Introducing one food at a time helps make sure there are no allergies in other words you could pinpoint an allergy faster... Just keep trying over again eventually your four month old will adjust to it and like it too. Good luck. L.

Hi R.,
I'm a wife,mother of a 2 yr old and expecting twins, a boy & a girl.My advice to you would be try feeding her solid food in the bottle and gradually out off the spoon,it worked for my son.Don't forget that all kids are different.Good luck

K. D.

Just keep at it. I started my son at 4 months and it seemed like he HATED food! he is now 5 1/2 months and he is just getting the hang of it (within the past week). Bananas did the trick...that is what he loves! since he finally decided he likes food he will eat anything and ALL of it!

I would give him a spoonful then stick the bottle in his mouth to help him swallow it. Try it on your finger too. My neighbor suggested Grits (YUCK!) but he like them for 1 day too!

Good luck and stick with it!

Hi R. our doctor reccomended waiting till 6 months of age to start solids. YOur daughter may still be just wanting formula and isn't ready to begin solids yet. I started feeding my daughter at 6months and she did very well with that. Good luck I hope your able to get it figured out pretty quick.

Seems to me that your daughter is not ready to start on solids. Don't force it - you don't want her to have negative feelings towards eating/food. My daughter was exclusively nursed until 5.5 months, then we introduced the cereals and veggies and she never turned anything away. You can’t force a child to eat, so just relax with it, leave it for a few weeks, then try again. Same goes for when they’re older – you may want them to eat 5 different types of veggies a day, but you cannot force a child to eat (and if they’re hungry they will eat).

J.

Every child is different. Don't force her to eat it. She'll be ready when she's ready. I didn't start feeding my son solid food till he was about 6 months old (he's now 13 months). Try again like a week from now and see how she takes it. Maybe she doesnt like the taste. I know my son didn't want anything to do with rice cereal, so i didn't even bother with it. Give her time, she'll get used to it!

As so many have already said, it should be a slow process. Try to introduce it once a day or every other day. Also try to work around introducing it at different times. For example: both of my children would have nothing to do with solid food if I gave them their bottle first- they were either full or wanted more milk. So I would try to give a bite or two in the beginning when they had not seen the bottle yet so they weren't quite expecting milk yet. What ever you do, don't worry. All kids do this and she will come around. Beleive it or not, she would eventually eat solid food all on her own if you did nothing at all. I don't recommend doing nothing at all, just relax about it. She will do EVERYTHING when SHE wants to.

We used the Gerber dry Oatmeal stuff with bananas. another thing you could try is getting some gerber fruit (stage1) and mixing 1/2 of that in with cereal and formula. sometimes that helps the taste. Also try to make the cereal very runny.

Hi R.,
She is obviously not ready for solid food. She is getting upset because it is not yet natural for her. Also rice cereal is not very nutritious and contrary to popular beleif most children do not actually like it's bland flavor. When Hayley stars reaching for your food or grabbing off the table it is a sign she is ready for solids. We started Amelie at about 8 months on avocado, which is both high in fat and very nutritious. Starting one new food a week is also a good idea,to prevent allergy.Annabel Karmel's book, I thinkit is called "First Foods" is a great manual to get you started. Good luck !
M.

She is probably very confused about the texture and may not be quite ready yet....just keep trying and soon enough you won't be able to shovel it fast enough (now my son at 11 months refuses the spoon...he wants to pick up his food.) It may help to mix a small amount of a pureed fruit (pears or applesauce) and perhaps try to start with some baby veggies (peas was a favorite of my son's. He actually started first on applesauce and prunes because of a constipation issue....those cleared that right up!!
Hope that is helpful.

N.

I would just stop for awhile and then try again...maybe she's not quite ready...

HI,

It sounds like you've gotten great advice. My kids never liked the cereals either and I found that I went to the Gerbor and Beech nut foods right away. ONe bit o adivce that my pediatrician gave me was to make sure you gave greens first, oranges next, and fruits last. This worked well for us. I have never given the kids baby meats because I figure that if I wouldn't eat it neither should my kids. I also have a lot of friends from the islands and Asia who feed their babies what they would eat with no problems. E
xperiment and enjoy

es

Dear R.,
Four months seems very young to me to be starting solids. Breast milk or formula only are fine until six months. Hold off for a while then maybe try oatmeal. My son would only eats the oatmeal and bananas mix (Beechnut, I think?). He didn't really get into being fed until 5+ months old. Don't worry.
K.

Hi!! My advise is wait!!! I know it's exciting to give them food but she dosen't want it. I would wait a month and see what happens. Hope this helps!

I have a 2 yr old and a 4 month old as well. My 2 yr old took awhile till she was ready for solids. Even though the doctor says you can start at 4 months does NOT mean you need to. If your daughter is not ready then put the rice ceral and spoons away for a couple of weeks or months. Solids right now are just supplimental, the formula/breast milk is the primary source of their nutrition. Your daughter will let you know when she is ready for solids. Just put it away for now. -M.

R.,

Speak with your pediatrician but I would wait a while longer before trying her on solids. Try again next month. She is getting all of the nutrition she needs from her formula anyway.

R. Rich

Hi R.,
You might want to give Hayley a little more time before giving solids another try. She just might not be quite ready yet. Some babies do just fine on formula/ breastmilk for these first few months. You could also try oatmeal cereal. That's what my five month old baby, R. is taking right now and she loves it. She did also show signs of being ready for solids so that made things easier. Hayley might just need a little more time.

Hey R., I would not even try feeding her with a spoon. Put the rice cereal in breast milk or formula and put it in a bottle. Just cut the nipple so the opening is a little larger. She is obviously not wanting the spoon, and she probably does not like the taste. She is associating the spoon and the bland taste and even the different texture. This is what I did with my boys and it worked. Hope this helps.

Thanks,
C.

Hi there! I know it can be upsetting when these things happen. My advise to you would be trying mixing the cereal in her bottle and start there. 1 teaspoon per ounce of liquid. I am the mom of 3 boys and I know it can be difficult. All I can say is that it sounds like your little one just isn't ready to be feed from a spoon. Try the cereal with formula in the bottle for a couple of months and then at about 6 months try the spoon feeding she may be more ready to take it.

Good luck.

Please feel free to ask more at ____@____.com

DELAY SOLIDS OR JUST SKIP THE RICE CEREAL IT HAS LITTLE TO NO NUTRITIONAL VALUE!!!!!

You should inform your doctor of the recommendations of the experts as to when to begin solids including the American Academy of Pediatrics. You might want to get a second opinion as to when to start solids. If you are formula feeding you may also want to consider fortfying the formula.
There is been evidence that your baby can eat what you eat with no problems (what do you think is in breastmilk) from most all other cultures in the world with out any increased allergy risk (especially if it doesn't run in your family) and there is also evidence that babies eating solids may do better if food was given to them in a chip form. Antedotely of course, I can tell you with my second child, he has eaten primarily organic food and what we eat either cut up small or blended and he eats so much more healthy and a variety of food than my oldest that I made the horrible mistake of only offering her single foods...HTH, S.

This is taken from www.kellymom.com

Why Delay Solids?

Reasons for delaying solids

Health experts and breastfeeding experts agree that it's best to wait until your baby is around six months old before offering solid foods. There has been a large amount of research on this in the recent past, and most health organizations have updated their recommendations to agree with current research. Unfortunately, many health care providers are not up to date in what they're telling parents, and many, many books are not up to date.

The following organizations recommend that all babies be exclusively breastfed (no cereal, juice or any other foods) for the first 6 months of life (not the first 4-6 months):

World Health Organization
UNICEF
US Department of Health & Human Services
American Academy of Pediatrics
American Academy of Family Physicians
American Dietetic Association
Australian National Health and Medical Research Council
Royal Australian College of General Practitioners
Health Canada
Most babies will become developmentally and physiologically ready to eat solids by 6-9 months of age. For some babies, delaying solids longer than six months can be a good thing; for example, some doctors may recommend delaying solids for 12 months if there is a family history of allergies.

Hi R.,
I thought you might trying to hold off on the solid foods for awhile. Maybe Hayley isn't quite ready yet. I have two little ones, Natalie who is 19 mos, and Russell who is 6 mos old and they both were different when it came to solids. Natalie started at 4 months, didn't like her cereal but liked everything else. The dr. told me not to worry about the cereal so much, as long as she was still getting formula. Russell didn't start eating until 5 months and he was a horrible eater so I held off for a few weeks and now he is doing great. He loves his cereal but is picky about everything else. I guess every baby is different and they tell you when they are ready for solid foods. But if you don't want to hold off, maybe you could try nuking the cereal, if you're not already. She might like it better warm. One last suggestion is trying a different brand or type of cereal. Maybe Hayley will like the taste of something else. Russell loves the taste of Gerber but just "likes" the taste of Beechnut, although he'll eat both. Well, just a thought. Hope something works for you!

Don't rush into solids, follow her lead! She will begin to show signs of interest when she is ready. Research shows that it actually better to wait until 6 months to start solids but I think it depends on the baby. My daughter showed interest at 4 months when she was cutting her first tooth. She loved each new thing that we introduced and never spit anything out but soon after she started getting terrible gas pains and she no longer slept as well as she had been. (That could have been due to teething too, hard to tell.)I then scaled back on solids giving her only one meal a day of either rice cereal, bannana, avacado or sweet potato, no combining until she was 6 months. Then I slowly started combining and adding meals and snacks. I hope that helps. Good luck.

Keep trying and don't give up. It took a while for my daughter to get used to the cereal. We finally started mixing fruits in with it and then she would eat it, happily. (Not to mention, adding pears keeps them from getting constipated!)

Every child is different and maybe she is not ready yet. I would wait until she starts to show interest in your food, that is usually a sign that she is ready for solids. There is no hard rule that she has to start eating solids at four months. So be patient and listen to your daughter. You may also start with fruits such as ripe banana or avocado that are easy to digest, filled with vitamins and more tasty than rice cereal, have you ever tasted that stuff?! Best of Luck to you!

I would say that she is probably just not ready yet. When I asked my doctor about feeding solids for my 5 month old he said to do it if she seemed interested but not force it. Formula or breast milk is ample food for the first six months and that not getting solids before then would not hurt them. My daughter is almost six months old now and she still doesn't show much interest in it. We have started sitting her in her high chair so that she can watch us eat. My son was a different story. At three months old he was watching every bite we took in our mouths and so we started him on solids at four months and he took to it like a charm. Just be patient, and maybe wait a little while longer before trying again. Perhaps in another month or so she will be ready. I guess your doctor and you know best. Just listen to your instincts. They will always be your best guide when it comes to your children.
Blessings,
C.

Some kids don't like cereal. Try something else like baby food or applesauce, whatever else. They don't need cereal since they get all their nutrients from milk/formula.

Dear R.,
If she likes her bottle, try mixing a little cereal with her formula (making it just a tad bit thicker than her regular formula), then cut the bottle nipple in a small X. This may help her get used to the new texture of the cereal without dealing with the newness of a spoon. Add more cereal to the mix when you think she's ready, and cut a slightly bigger X in the nipple. My babies (and I had 3) all learned to eat their cereal this way. I would give them a bottle with cereal at night so they would sleep through the night.

I have a granddaughter, who was a breast fed baby, and this method did not work for her. My daughter had to take her directly from the breast to table food at 9 months. She would have nothing to do with a bottle! And she refused a spoon. They used a small mesh bag (that you can order specifically for babies learning to eat) and she would suck food from this bag. That was a month ago. She is now feeding herself all kinds of food... bananas, Cheerios, etc...

Be patient! Texture, temperature, taste; it's all new to her. She's really young and has plenty of time to learn about solid foods.

Now for your "sanity". May I suggest a beautiful new lipstick or lipgloss? I'd love to give you one as a gift. Just visit my website and be sure to mention Mamasource in a note to me. www.marykay.com/GinnyBrandecker There's no obligation whatsoever.

Enjoy these days... She'll be in college before you blink!
Warm regards,
G.G. (Grandmother G.)

She may not be ready for solids yet. Look for signs of her getting interested in you eating and such. Is her tongue thrust reflex gone? If not, wait a few days and try again. My son really didn't start accepting solids till he was 5 months old. If he is really hungry he will not cooperate with solid feedings at all. I then let him drink about 1-2oz then feed him some rice.
Oh, now that he is 6 months is wants to do it himself and tries to grab the spoon away from me. What mess!
Just remember...pedetricians recommend starting solids 4-7 months but your baby is the one who will reall let you know. :)
Good Luck!

have you tried a different cereal, ie. barley, oatmeal?

Maybe put some cereal in her bottle so she gets used to the flavor.

Greetings,

First off smell it, then taste what you are feeding her. Pretty vile stuff eh? I bet she thinks so too.. I know my son did. What I did, and generations before me was to put baby food bananas or other fruit mixed in with it.. just a bit. Enough for flavoring. She will get more interested in it, and get the habit down of making her mouth work in that way. Remember swallowing off of spoon is very complicated! *smiles*
Good luck!

No need to rush! Take a break for a while. She'll eat when she's ready. As long as she's getting her nourishment from formula or breastmilk, there's no need to worry about her getting enough.

What kind of spoon are you using? My daughter would only eat off the plastic coated ones at first. Good luck!

Hello R.,
I am a mother of 8 children. Sometimes it can be very frustrating introducing solid foods. One thing that will help is to feed your daughter a little bit of formula first so that she is not extremely hungry, and make sure that the cereal is made thin almost liquid. I hope this information helps you.

M.

Have you tried putting the cereal in her bottle with formula? Maybe it is the cereal she doesn't like or the idea of eating. With my oldest we started with mashed potatoes, not the best idea of course as the doctor said, but atleast he was eating and his formula consumption was cut in half within two weeks because he wanted what ever food we gave. One good experience can make a world of difference. Also, let her try to do it herself. Relax, the mess will be well worth it if she decides she wants to eat it. Also, how tense are you when you try to feed her? Something new plus tension don't mix and if she is picking up on your feelings then she will automatically withdraw. Then again, maybe she just isn't ready yet.
Good Luck,
J.

Hi R.
I have four children and they all started solids at different times. My eldest are twins of 12 and even they started a couple of months apart. My advice would be not to push the solid food but maybe leave it for a few days and then try again when your little one is relaxed and happy.

Hello, we started our daughter on solids by mixing some cereal with her formula and putting it in her bottle. I cut the nipple holes a little bigger so it would go through. I put enough to just thicken up the formula, not thick enough for spoon feeding. We then added a fruit to it. We did one a week to make sure she was not allergic. It looks a little funny in the bottle but she loves it!!

Perhaps she doesnt like the spoon. As weird as it sounds, I would first try to feed her with your finger, or if she uses a binky/pacifier I would use that to scoop it up and feed it to her. Once she is familiar with the taste of the cereal, and starts to recognize it, she may be more open to the spoon.

Out of curiosity, is she breastfed or bottle?

My daughter was the same way. We started with Cherrios. She may not like the rice cereal as much, we tried the barley and other types of cereal, she responded better to those. Also, you can try with a little bit of warm water. My daughter wasn't fond of the formula or milk in her cereal.
The other option to try is mushing up some bananas or apple into the cereal to give it a bit more flavor.

Please don't put the food in a bottle and thin it with milk to get the poor child to eat the solids. Babies will eat with a spoon when they are physically able to and are interested. Many doctors wait until there are 6 months and then when the baby shows interest. I have 4 kids, 4 Grandsons, and am a pediatric nurse with lots of experience. Start giving her small amounts of people food off your plate and eventually she will eat that awful tasting baby food. I have found that making you own baby food is easy and has much more taste. Cheap too, it comes from you table. Good luck. Being a new Mom is so hard especially when everyone, expert or not, has an opinion.

Mix it with cereal or breast milk and sweeten it with fruit. If you make 3 Tablespoons of cereal, add 1/2 to 1/3 jar of fruit. My daughter only liked it if the consistency was just right. Also, 4 months is still very young. She may not like it for another month or so.

Hi R.. My name is A., and I just recently started feeding my 19 week old baby solids also. What I did was, I undressed him so that he could feel comfortable, then I would mix like Gerber peas with the cereal and formula. He eats off a spoon but I also have a bottle feeder. It looks like a bottle and has a nipple, but it gets the solids in their mouth. You can find that at babys r us, walmart, or target. Sometimes he eats and sometimes he just wants his formula. His pediatrican said that it was ok if he only ate one spoon full with each feeding. We just have to start introducing solids that's all. I hope that I have helped you out in some way. Take care.
A.

Hi,
I would try putting mostly milk and some cereal in a bottle (with nipple hole cut larger as needed) and then keep adding more cereal each time until she sees that she has been eating it already.
Good luck.
D.

R.,

What I have learned with my 2 girls is that 4 months may be early to start solids. My pediatrician suggested it, but said you can introduce solids between 4-6 months. If your baby is gaining weight and seems satisfied with breast milk/formula then hold off and try to start re-introducing the solids in a couple of months.

When you do start to introduce the solids, make the cereal real runny and let her suck it off the spoon.

I hope this helps! Good luck, E.

SOME BABIES ARE JUST NOT READY TO START EATING AT 4 MONTHS.
MAYBE HOLD OFF FOR A WEEK AND THAN TRY AGAIN BUT MAYBE ADDING A LITTLE APPLESAUCE TO THE MIX. THE EXTRA SWEET TASTE MAY JUST DO THE TRICK. GOOD LUCK!

I would just keep trying everyday. My now 8 month old son shied away from solid food at first. We just kept trying. Between 5 & 6 months he started grabbing at my food and then he really took off on eating solids.

Don't worry, she'll get it. You could also try to add some pears or applesauce...that might help. :)

if shes refusing she isnt ready for foods. Or she thinks that the food is horrible tasting. my reccomendation is to start with real food. rice cereal has no nutrional value practically and just fills the babies up for nothing but empty calories. i woudl like get frozen or fresh veggies, like peas or mashed potatoes. something with real flavor and put some on the end of your finger and introduce them slowly till she decides it is something she likes.

many babies are not ready at 4 months to eat solid food. does she have teeth? the enzymes in her stomach produce the readiness for teeth to grow in. so when shes ready to digest food easily, then her teeth come in appropriatly to what she should eat. for instance, molars dont come in until after 12 months because the body cannot digest meat. but we often give pureed meat and wonder why babies get intestinal discomfort. they are not ready. if she has her 2 front teeth, then you know shes ready for mashable fruits and veggies. if you can mash them with your fngers to swallow, she might like that a whole lot better. giving real food with real falvor is fabulous and it saves money on buying nasty jarred food that have so much added for shelf life.. beacuse she is formula fed, it might be better to start her a little soon, but if shes refusing, after you try all this, then start again in a month. if you force her, then she will resist food and start to associate it as bad. which is not good. Just on formula for 6 months shell be fine. start her on solids when shes ready. not when we think she should be. babies grow at different developmental rates :) if you respect that growth shell be a much happier baby :)

My oldest daughter never wanted to eat from a spoon at that age. But i did find that the cause was she did not like rice cereal. She liked oatmeal & the mixed cereal. At that young age, i started off by putting the cereal in a bottle with her milk until she adjusted to the taste then i got her to eat from a spoon. It is a hard task when they are that little. Just have patience and keep trying.

We had a hard time with the solid food. Sophia didn't want to eat from a spoon. I put cereal in her bottle at night. I gradually kept trying to feed her with a spoon. She's just over 5 months now and can't get enough. She likes to take the spoon, needless to say, causing a nice mess all over her. Be patient, it may take some time for her to adapt.

R.,
what was the doctor's reasoning for starting so soon with the solids? I sounds like your little girl isn't ready. Is it possible to wait a week or two?

M.
mother of 2

When my twins were a couple of months old, I just thickened thier formula with rice cereal and gave it to them in the bottle as opposed to spoon-feeding, and they did fine with that. That will get her used to the taste and texture of it, then maybe it will be easier with the spoon. I opened the tip of the nipples a little more with a knife and it worked great.

R.,

I didn't start my daughter on solid foods until she was 6 mths old but she was also breastfeed. You might want to consider waiting until she is older or what worked for me was I would dance and sing while I feed her. She was so amused that she didn't even notice she was eating. At first she wouldn't eat much but once I started getting some music on and acting like a fool she would laugh and eat, it was great and so bonding. Sometimes you have to think of creative ways to get your child to do what you want her to. Making a fool out of myself as always worked for my daughter and made the transition to solids so much easier.

B.

I didn't have a problem personally with my daughter... but I've heard that a good place to possibly start is to feed her first from your finger (clean of course). She'll get used to the food that way. It's extremely non-threatening presentation!

We didn't give our children solids until they showed an interest. Try again in a few weeks. They are getting everything they need from breast milk/formula. No need to push--in fact many studies have found that children are less likely to have alergies if they start solids around 6 months. You are the mom--you get to make the decisions.

At Target, Publix and Walmart they have a feeder. Not sure exactly what the name of it is. But it has a mesh netting that screws onto a handle and you put the baby food or piece of fruit in it and the baby can naw or suck on it. It's a messy endeavor, but maybe that will work. Maybe she doesn't like what you are giving her. My oldest loved bananas and banana baby food. But then 7 years later when my daughter came along she didn't like bananas, but liked the peach and peach cobbler baby food. And then 7 1/2 years later my youngest son liked everything except for the rice cereal.
Everyone is different and you just have to find what she likes.
My daughter was so pickey that if she didn't have the right shape of nipple on her bottle or pacifier she wouldn't suck on it and there was NO WAY you were going to change her mind about that. Until she stopped drinking out of the bottle and using a pacifier.
Good luck and hang in there.
T.

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.

The only thing I can think of is that maybe she's not ready. I know they sell a cup (sorta) made for baby food. She would drink it like a bottle, but it doesn't hold milk, only baby food. I know it's at Wal-Mart. I think it sells for about $3 or so.

We started our daughter around 6 months on rice cereal watered way down with breastmilk/formula. It took some time, but she finally got the hang of it. I remember being impatient at the time that she would not eat baby food like my friend's babies. Keep working with her and be patient is the best advise I can give. I remember being a new mom and being worried about doing everything right. I wish I would have relaxed more b/c I didn't give myself a chance to enjoy new motherhood as much as I would have liked. She's now coming up on 2, which is a whole new world of issues! : )

Try putting a little on your finger and then in her moouth. Soon she will get used to the taste. Try banana in the cereal -
a great book for me was: Super Baby Food (Paperback)
by Ruth Yaron
Good Luck -
J.

I started my twins with cereal in a bottle first to rule out allergies then switched to the spoon. They preferred oatmeal over rice cereal and I introduced fruits and veggies shortly after the cereal. Putting a little applesauce with the oatmeal was a hit with my girls! I also just let them get as messy as they wanted and had more fun with it then anything. I read it can take a baby up to 10 times to try a food before they like it. The main thing is to have fun with it and do it at her pace. If she's not ready now try again in a few weeks. There are enough nutrients in formula to sustain a baby until 1 year.

Hi! I have an 11-month old, and she has NEVER liked rice cereal! I went through the same thing with her, and figured out that a mixture of cereal, fruit, and formula worked the best. BUT, when I replaced the rice cereal with oatmeal cereal, she took to it MUCH faster! Her favorite breakfast now is oatmeal, apples, & cinnamon! :)

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