When Should You Start Feeding Your Baby Solid Food?

One question that pediatrician hears when a mother notices that their baby is hungrier than normal is “when should I start my baby on solid foods”? Your baby will let you know when they are ready for you to introduce solid food, but there are a few signs that a mother can look for. The timing for starting to feed your baby is important, along with the importance of the solid foods you actually choose. 

Just like other children, your baby will go through growth spurts. Going through these growth spurts may make them hungrier than usual sometimes, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are ready for solid food. You want to be mindful of the times when they want to eat more and check for consistency in this hungrier state. 

You will still want to keep breast milk and formula as part of their diet when introducing your baby to solids. The milk will still provide the nutrients that your baby requires for the first year of their life. 

Between four and six months old a baby can begin eating solid foods, but this is not a hard rule of parenting. If the baby isn’t ready to start eating solid foods at this time in tier lives, it will be wok. They will know when the time is right. Listed here are few signs that might help you to figure out when your baby is ready for them. 

The first sign to look for is that your baby has learned the skill of controlling their neck. If the baby still has trouble with holding their head up on their own, then this is not the right time to start them on solid food. Being able to hold their head up on their own will allow them to swallow foods that are thicker than milk. If the baby cannot properly control their neck, then choking can be the result. 

It is natural for a baby to push things out of their mouth. This begins when feeding with a bottle or breast. This is called the extrusion reflex and helps the baby avoid choking. In order for a baby to eat solids they must first overcome this reflex. You want to wait a little while longer if at four months old your baby is still pushing food or formula out of their mouths. 

Now just as a baby must crawl before they can walk, they must also be able to chew before they can eat. When you chew food, it pushes the food towards the back of the mouth and allows us to swallow. If your baby shows good and fluent chewing motions, then this can be a sign that they are ready to eat solid food. 

An increase in your baby’s weight is another good sign that they are ready. This alone is not a sure-fire sign, but when added to other signs that your baby shows could mean that the time for your baby to start on solids is close at hand. 

If your baby is still not eating solid food by the age of six months, do not be alarmed. Continue to be patient. If your baby is still showing signs of being hungrier but not quite ready for the change, then you can double up on their milk intake for the time being it will be perfectly alright. 

When your baby is ready for something more than milk or formula, they will let you know. Determining exactly when your baby is ready for solids is different with every baby.