Weaning : Hi lovely ladies my baby was born at 35 weeks... - NCT


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Channie1983 profile image

Hi lovely ladies my baby was born at 35 weeks and I was told that as she is premature I should not start baby on path to solids until she is 6 months as her body would not be ready for it. I have tried to make contact but not getting through. I am a first time mum so have absolutely no idea to start and really need guidance but at a loss as am unable to get hold of them. Any suggestions would be really appreciated. Thank you all so much xxx

18 Replies

Health visitors tell everyone weaning from 6 mths it used to be 4 mths but they say 6 now. My baby’s just 4 mths I’ve gave him a little fruit purée pouches to taste just a little at a time to get used to taste and textures.

Chloe0789 profile image
Chloe0789 in reply to gcw104

It isn’t just health visitors, the nhs don’t recommended It due to the gut and digestive system not being ready and milk being far more important and more nutritious! Even more so when the baby is premature, as the gut has had even less time to develop!

It's 6 month always has been start them off on baby rice I've had 4 children always started at 6months they don't advice earlier how premature was your baby mine was a month early and still I have to wait till 6 month wouldn't do it earlier it's not good for the system

It's not advised for any babies to move onto solids before 6 months, because they've found this causes less issues with gut health abs for the first year food is only complimentary alongside milk.

Baby also needs to be ready to be able to eat solids and often aren't ready to move into solids at dead on 6 months and it might take a bit longer.

They should be able to sit up and hold their head steady, they should be able to get food to their mouths and their gag reflex should be less so that they can eat the solid they're given.

The nhs start for life has lots of good information, there's a good list of what is not signs baby is ready for weaning too, like waking up at night, chewing hands etc.


There's lots of weaning groups on Facebook with ideas on how to wean. Whether you want to do baby led weaning or spoon feed weaning (Baby led weaning groups won't tend to let you join unless you plan on doing full baby led weaning, as 'doing a bit of both' is not considered baby led

There's also several good Instagram weaning accounts, what mummy makes, wean in fifteen etc for ideas of food to give baby.

My sister got me an Annabel Karmel weaning book which had some great recipes in and goes from 6 months up to toddler hood.

It's so much fun introducing them to food, messy but lots of fun 😁

Hiya my daughter was also born at 35 weeks and I’ve been told the same thing by my health vistor. She said babies kidneys are still developing at 4 months so 6 months is the baseline. I am dreading it but looking forwards to seeing her enjoy food xx

Hi- what is it you are trying to make contact for? What questions do you have about weaning? If it’s just the age thing-All babies are recommended to start at 6 months to make sure digestive system developed, but especially premature babies. There are some exceptions for babies with bad reflux where the doctor my advise some porridge to thicken the feed. Obviously some mums do it sooner but that’s the (current) recommendations.

Our health visitor did give us a leaflet but I have found Facebook groups or the peanut app helpful for tips on what and how to start weaning (I’m going with baby porridge and some boiled carrot sticks to start as doing a mixture of spoon fed and baby led). My wee one is just 5 months but I now sit him in the high chair while we eat so he gets used to it and he does watch us put things in our mouths (we make the occasional daft ‘yum yum’ noise 😜). I did let him lick a strawberry the other day that he was interested in 🤣 (his face was a picture) but I haven’t given him any solids at all and will wait another few weeks to try the porridge once he is 6months or there abouts☺️ I see no need to rush it. He’s still doing good just on the milk for now. Hope you and your little one are doing well 🤗 xx

Channie1983 profile image
Channie1983 in reply to Twiglet2

Thank you so much xxx

Thank you all for your amazing guidance and support it has really helped me understand the process as the HV has not really been a great source of support. I truly am grateful to you all and will work on the basis of your extremely valuable knowledge xxx

Hi, I'm currently weaning my 3rd child. They all went 40+ weeks before birth and I started weaning all 3 at 6 months as reastmilk or formula is the best thing for them until then while their digestive system develops. 37 weeks is classed as full term so your baby was only a couple of weeks premature so I wouldn't worry about waiting longer than 6 months, the HV just wanted to make sure you didn't do what some people do and start earlier than the recommended time as your baby's digestive system would be a couple of weeks behind so it would be bad for her to start too soon.

As for weaning technique, I always start with a bit of baby porridge or baby rice for a few days as the ingredients are mostly the same as formula. That way, baby can get used to the eating process and the gut can get used to the thicker food without also having to deal with new ingredients. Then I move on to adding a bit of pureed fruit into the baby porridge. Then adding a second solids meal each day in the form of a pureed veg. When giving a fruit or veg I also give baby a bit of it as finger food of possible. So pureed carrot and a boiled carrot stick, pureed mango and a stick of very ripe soft mango. You can also get a little mesh bag with a handle (cant remember what they're called) that you can put other foods into that aren't good as finger foods when baby is really young and they can euck at it through the mesh eg. Strawberries, grapes etc so nothing big enough to choke on gets through but they get the flavour.

You can quickly move on to weetabix, porridge oats etc too so you're not spending silly money on baby cereal. Each new food item I give it them for 3 days before moving on to a new food. That way at any given time baby has only recently had 2 or 3 new foods so if there is an allergic reaction or nasty nappies suggesting trouble digesting you can more easily identify the culprit. Once you've tried something out of each food group and had to reactions you can speed it up and be a but less careful if you like eg. Parsnip, swede, carrot etc. are all root veg. Orange, lemon, lime, grapefruit etc are all citrus fruits. Once i've tried a good amount of different fruits and veg and baby is happy processing them I start adding meat, carbs and dairy to the mix, so a bit of mushed up corned beef or very finely chopped chicken in the veg mush, a yoghurt or rice pudding, baby pasta etc. This adds to the variety of ingredients and the texture.

Dont forget:

Baby should still be having formula or breast milk as well as solids until age 1 (formula box says how much). Cows milk can be used as an ingredient in weaning but should not replace breast or bottle milk until age 1.

Baby needs vitamin drops (free from HV, baby centres or Tesco pharmacy) until age 4.

They reckon it can take babies up to seven times of trying something to decide if they like it or not, wo dont worry if their first (or second, or third, or...) reaction to something isnt that positive, keep giving it them until they come round. I've not found anything that any of my babies didnt like at weaning stage, it's when theh get older that theh start being picky eaters.

My way is just one way of weaning. Some people do fully baby led i.e. all finger foods until they can use a spoon themselves. Some introduce foods in a different order or at a different speed - I certainly got more flexible with the 3 day rule and one food at a time rule with each child - with the 3rd I've done two fruits blended/stewed together from the start, since we haven't encountered any allergies or digestive issues with the first two. As long as baby is safe (no choking hazards, always supervised, check out the nhs list of foods not to give before age 1) then do a bit of research and choose what is best for you and baby.

Most importantly, dont stress about it or baby will sense your concern and it will affect her attitude to food. The formula/breast milk and vitamin drops will ensure she has everything she needs to be healthy whilst weaning - so remember the rhyme that doesn't quite rhyme "food is fun until age 1" and by then your little one will be wolfing down anything and everything.

Good luck! xx

Hi you are so Amazing thank you for taking the time out to write such an informative response it is really helpful xxx

Wow this amazing advice I’ve screenshot this as my daughter is 5 months and was born at 35 weeks she is not able to fully sit up on her one without help so not sure I will start dead on 6 months but love your suggestions best post regarding weaning I have come across. Thank you so much x

Everyone is so amazing, thoughtful and insightful. It is great it has helped you too. Good luck when you do start the weaning process xxx

Thank you sweet xx

Hi ladies, Si glad youve found my thoughts helpful.

My two girls were much better at sitting up than my little boy, but we used a 'bumbo' for the first month or two as they sit in it more snugly so it offers better support.

Bumbo 1

Hope this helps too x

Bumbo 2

It depends really my we girl was born 36 weeks with severe silent reflux I’ve been told by a ped to start weaning her at 4 months even though she was early I’m a little scared to start I’ve let her try a few spoonfuls of organic pouches she likes them so probs give her those and start her on actual solids when she’s 6 months xx

Cmc2020 profile image
Cmc2020 in reply to Cmc2020

Ps she’s 4 months on weds x

Channie1983 profile image
Channie1983 in reply to Cmc2020

I know how you feel. I hope she is doing well and a healthy and happy four months and that you are doing well too. Thank you so much for taking the time to reply to my post sharing your experience is greatly appreciated.

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