View Full Version : When to start solids
Just wondering when to start my little guy on solids. He will be 4mths old next week, but he was 6wks premmie. I asked my chn & she said to wait till he is 6mths old. If anyone can share some of their advice or opinions that would be great.
My view is that the 6 month mark is a good place to aim for. There is a huge body of research which indicates that (a) they are getting enough nutrients from breast milk or formula up until that time (b) there is a strong link between introducing solids before 6 months and increased allergies in children and (c) there is a strong link between introducing solids earlier and childhood obesity. So take the advice of your child health nurse - and if you are worried about the prem side of things changing the start date, check with the nurse or the pediatrician about how this affects the start date. I know that lots of other people think that their children need food earlier because they watch food going into their mouths etc, but I think that the wait of 2 months is such a small thing and can have such a large impact on their lives that it is worth aiming for it.
Again - just my opinion, but hope it helps.
my son is almost 4 1/2 months and i started him on solids at 4 months against the advice of my CHN, i felt like he was ready as he would finish a 200ml bottle of formula and still be hungry, could sit and hold his head well, he had also lost the protruding tounge reflex. i know there is alot of info out there to say wait to 6 months but this is only a guideline. the alergy thing is a concern but some evidence suggests that these allergies would have surfaced later in life anyways.
i just started with a bit of rice cereal mid morning and he is now onto a bit of apple or pumkin twice a day.
when it comes down to it, trust your instincts, after all you are the mother who is with your bub 24hrs a day
I agree with Nel09 trust your instincts. Each baby is different so I don't beleve there is one wright time. Look for the signs they are ready, eg always looking for more food, has good head control, takes an interest in what your eating. If you think they are ready try them on a bit of rice cereal if they are not ready it will keep being spat back at you. If this happens leave it a week and try again. Have fun!
little bubbas rarely need solids till they are 6 mths old, as they get bigger they are going to obviously want more but that does not mean that they are ready for solids it just means that you increase the amount of breast/bottle feeds you are giving them. the little tummies cant really take it much earlier than this and you could be setting yourself up for all sort of gastro and allergy problems later on if you push them to early. my little ones are proof that they do not need food before the 6 mth mark, they were fully breastfeed up to this point and were beautiful babies without any reflux, diarrehoa, skin complaints, allergies etc. my poor eldest son however is another story, being a naive 18 yr old when i had him i started giving him solids at 15, 16 wks and his health problems have been never ending, he has severe food allergies, terrible eczema and asthma. i know that not all of this can be attributed to starting solids early but i think it certainly contributed to alot of his problems. Let your little ones tummy develop(esp if he was premmie) and wait a little bit longer
I started my son on solids at around 4.5mths, with a tiny amount of rice cereal every few days (mainly when it seemed that milk wasnt filling him up)... then i went up to other things like potato and pumpkin cause he hated rice cereal.
However because your son was premmie it may be a little different, and i dont know how that will effect things. You may need to go by your instincts here, and if you decided to start early start with something like rice cereal as it is least likely to cause a reaction.
I tend to diagree with some of your comments
Reflux is a phisical problem that a baby is born with- it has nothing to do with starting solids before 6 mths
Asthma and Eczema are most likely heredetory and it is belived to come from the same defective gene.
Neither of my kids have any allergies, skin problems or had any gastro problems and they were both started on solids at 4 mths
i never said starting solids caused reflux i was just saying that my babies have only been fully breastfed until 6 mths and have been completely healthy, despite alot of people that seem to think a fat bloated baby who is to stuffed with to much food or formula is a healthy baby, i am aware of what causes reflux thankyou very much, but food when a baby isnt ready for can cause stomach upsets, wind etc (which is why i used the word reflux, sorry for not being precise but im sure you got the jist of what i was trying to say), i cant stand it when people twist your words around to try and pick a fight when you are just offering advice, which is all i was doing, but seeing as you are the expert i will leave it to you
Sorry if you thought i was picking a fight but with 2 kids with reflux it frustrates me a little when wrong infomation is given. For anyone wanting to know more on reflux this site will tell you more http://au.health.yahoo.com/041101/25/1uxn.html?r=967507725
Just to add some more info' as to why waiting until 6 months is a good recommendation -
Pancreatic enzymes, necessary for digestion, are absent up to at least 3 months of age and remain inadequate up to 6 months. As a result, the ability to actually properly digest is limited, if not absent, until 6 months.
Intestines secrete a protective cover, which prevents allergens passing through the intestines into the blood stream- setting up the allergy. This protection is very weak in the early months and only peaks at around 7 months.
Giving baby gluten containing cereals ( wheat, oats, rye and barley) before 6 months of age increases the risk of coeliacs disease.
Wheatgerm (as in wholemeal foods) may irritate a baby’s bowel lining if tried before 9 months.
Breastmilk iron is extremely well absorbed until anything else [food or fluid] is put into the stomach - which means that breastfed babies who have solids introduced too early are at risk of anaemia ... and all the problems that go along with that!
Though babies should definitely not be given solids before 4 months, there are 'indicators' that can show between 4-6 months they may be ready i.e. if the baby has lost the extrusion reflex, is sitting alone and has good head control, is hungry after milk feeds and is losing weight [this one should be looked for only if baby is being truely demand fed] and is reaching and shouting to get at your food!!
Hope this helps!
Just to add that it's fine to wait even longer than 6 months if you're breastfeeding, bubs is a healthy weight and doesn't seem particularly interested.
Felix didn't really have solids (like more than a mouthful) till he was 9 months and he was a lovely chubby baby. I know loads of mamas that waited till 9-12 months without any problems. You do need to keep your personal iron levels up though.
Our second, though we did attempt solids at 7 months - and many times after that!, refused all solids until about 11 months old. Fine and healthy and grew just fine on breastmilk alone for that time!
matilda is just 7 mths and round and gorgeous and not the least bit interested in solids! so definetly not going to push her.
And Rell i just wanted to apologise to you, i think my response to your post was a bit over the top, i had not had a good day and unfortunately sometimes it is to easy to vent our frustrations on people in the internet world! we are all mummies on this site just trying to do the best for our bubbas and should always support each other and not get cranky at each other, so once again im sorry narelle :o from erin xx
I have just been reading this thread as we started with a little bit of apple last week on tayla as she was doing the mouth chewing motions and for those few days we tried she was really unsettled and would scream for an hour at night when going down which she never did.
So, we stopped the solids and the screaming stopped too - maybe a coincidence, maybe not, but it goes to show how every baby is different and only I know my baby best and this tells me she is not ready to start solids yet.
It's funny about the links to problems as I was born 6 weeks premmie and my mother started me on solids around 4 months or a bit earlier as that was what they were told to do in the 70s and I have been plaugued with colic and irritable bowel and all sorts of stomach problems all my life. Once again, it may be a coincidence but this is also why I don't want to rush Tayla into solids as I don't want her to have the same stomach problems that I do!!
Also, Erin, that was lovely for you to apologise :D - I know exactly what you mean after or during a bad day of where I get no sleep and Tayla plays up and I am working from home and sending off emails. I have to be very careful as I can take things the wrong way or really have a go at someone. We all have different ideas and opinions - the world would be boring if we didn't!!!
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