Weaning

Hi everyone.

I haven't really posted much in the last while. I guess life gets away from u when u have a baby to run around after.

First ill give u an update. Erica is 14wks and 4 days old. Shes a much better sleeper and we pretty much have a routine going. Wake up at 7 or 8am, food every 2 hrs and change bum several times until bed at 9pm where we get changed into pjs, have a final bun change and feed then soothed to sleep with a dummy until 10.30pm where we have a very sleepy baby until anywhere between 3 and 5am. Very lucky mommy.

I have found that I'm busier now than ive ever been with mommy groups, soft play, play dates with other babies... its mad!

On one of my arranged play dates for erica the other mommy asked me if I was giving her water yet. I asked y as I am only strictly breastfeeding (apart from a bottle every now and again if I'm not available which is seldom) and she said u have to at this age to lead into weaning. I realised how clueless I am about the whole thing and have no idea what the next steps are. As erica is nearing the 4mth stage, I would like to introduce some baby rice. Do I need to be giving her water now? How much water does she need? How often? I'm freaking out as I really don't know what I should be doing x

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  • U can giv water if u feel necessary but she wil is be getting everything frm u and is there a reason to giv baby rice as sounds like she sleeps well so doesn't sound hungry.. I started at about 5mo with fruit purees and a bit of porridge but was never a regular thing.. I used them as they hav flavour rice is very plain and quite frankly tastes of nothing. obv at end of the day its up to you. I give my son whose 8mo a beaker of water and let him drink when he pleases. . I hav literally in last week stopped breastfeeding due to work etc. Annabel karmel has a gd book about weaning that u can get on amazon.

  • I picked the Annabel book up in a charity shop along with another recipe book :-) Barg!! X

  • Hi, it is not necessary to give a BF baby water. FF yes but BF no. If your LO seems cranky and wants to latch on and take a quick little feed, this is her generally just having a drink rather than a feed (which you may find she does more frequently on a warm day).

    Everyone starts weaning at different times. I personally started weaning earlier than 6 months due to having a very hungry baby.

    A piece if advice I can give is this. Do your own thing, you know what is best for your LO and it is worth looking into baby lead weaning. Do not panic what the other mums are doing. Your doing a great job as is with her routine and feeds and she sounds very contented.

    I BF my LO and did not give her anything other than breastmilk from myself or a bottle. When I started weaning her (with porridge and fruit purees) i would either give some cool boiled water in a beaker or expressed milk. For now your milk is more than enough and you can always express some into a beaker to allow her to get comfortable using a beaker (warning...very messy!) :) x

  • Great to see your both doing so well :) Milly is 15wks & 1day (where on earth does the time go?). I've just started introducing water from a beaker just to get her used to it before we start weaning. I've no idea where to start either lol. she's FF & seems happy as she is for now so I'm not in any rush to start, but it's definitely on my mind.

    Erica definitely sounds content- your obviously doing a brilliant job :)

    Ive had a letter from my hv with an appointment in a few weeks for millys 3-4month check, which I'm told she will go through weaning, so perhaps your due the same visit :)

    Oh, & I can second the annabel karmel book! I've got a copy I've used for work & it's got some great recipes in xx

  • There's definitely no need to offer water to a BF baby, breast milk provides all the hydration & nutrition they need. Is there a reason why you want to start on baby rice? Official advice is to BF for 6 months although you obviously just need to do whatever you think is best. It doesn't sound like she needs it yet to be honest. My little boy is 26 weeks and we started weaning about 3 weeks ago on baby porridge & fruit & veg purées. He now has breakfast (weetabix / normal porridge / readybrek) and lunch. Today he had pea & carrot purée. Iv also just given him his first experience of finger food with a bit of crumpet! He doesn't fancy water yet, we keep trying but he's not that interested. Once they start on solids they do need more liquid in order to prevent constipation (we've got this problem now) but I wouldnt say you need to offer it at 4 months in order to 'prepare'.

    Do you have any weaning classes in your area? We had one at our local health centre which was really informative. I didn't have a clue before that! You will know she's ready for weaning once she can pick up an item and put it into her mouth without any help from you and also be able to sit in a chair without being held.

    Don't compare against others, just take it all at your own pace and you'll know when she's ready xx

  • Thank u girls. I guess I wanted to give her the rice as she's started watching me and her dad intently when we are eating, licking her lips and emulating our chewing movements. I thought that was the signs we would be looking for.

    Ill try to get the annabel book at the library to get up to speed. Plus the seminars sound like an excellent idea :) x

  • Being interested in your food is one of the secondary signs, the most important ones are hand/mouth coordination & being able to sit in a chair. I learnt that at the weaning session so definitely see if they do one near you! X

  • I second the need to be able to sit well. With my first I weaned her around 5months and she was still a little hunched over, as a result she gagged a lot and vomited with every meal. Health visitor said it would be because she wasnt able to support herself uptight. My 18 week old has nabbed a piece of apple from my hand and sucked on it which she frowned at. I'm happy letting him taste things without necessarily eating and in no hurry to wean as its going to complicate my day so much more!!!

  • Your baby doesn't need any water until they start weaning onto solids. Your breastmilk changes constantly to ensure your baby gets everything she needs. On a hot day it will become more watery etc. As everyone else has said she needs to be sitting up unaided before she starts having solids. Around 4 and 5 months most babies start to wake more for feeds at night but this is usually because they are becoming more aware of their surroundings during the day so get easily distracted and tend not to feed as long so then play catch up at night :-) . Even when you do start weaning there is no need to give baby rice. Its just a bulking agent and has no nutritional value for baby ! As everyone else has said you're better starting with fruit and veg :-)

  • I would recommend Baby Led Weaning, there's a book by Jill Rapley, you can borrow it from the library or children's centre. It's an interesting read about how to wean your baby. NCT do weaning courses too that are very good, see if you can find one in your area. I think current guidelines are still to wait until they are 6 months to start weaning. Your lo should be able to sit up unaided and bring a piece of food to their mouth themselves. BLW is great fun if rather messy. My oldest is 26 months now, we did BLW and she is fantastic at feeding herself with a fork and spoon and has been for at least 6 months. We ate with some friends who hadn't used BLW and they were amazed at how well she used cutlery. She also holds a pencil/pen/crayon/paintbrush really well and has excellent control to draw circles, squares and lines.

  • Baby gets everything from you, so water and food until 6 months or so if ur breastfeeding. Not sure about.bottle feeding? Was this other mummy bottle or breastfeeding feeding? So weaning wise it's up to you really all babies are different, sweet potatoes is a good first food to try? I baby led weaned mine which is when you give solid food and not purees. We did purees for a while, but then my breastfeeding counsellor suggested this and it worked for me. My son is 8 and has always eaten everything! Chilli, rice, salmon are some of his favourites :) i am newly pregnant and I will be doing baby led weaning with this one, but do whatever is best for you and your family :)

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