Technical jargon is a general problem – you meet someone in a field, and they start using words that sound completely foreign (I should know. I’m a biologist.) It’s worse when the technical terms are in English, but have very specific meanings. You think you’re communicating, but are you? Us FTMs (First Time Mom) have this problem.
Ready for Solids vs Eager for Solids
My daughter is now 3 months. Ever since she grew more conscious, she’s been interested in us eating. She has learned to smack her lips, and to chew imaginary food. My mom tells her that Grandma knows she wants to eat, but she’s going to have to wait a little longer. She thinks we may start introducing solids early, although seeing how she’s having problems with her neck, we may actually be delayed.
I’ve seen a lot of posts in online forums about how someone’s baby is “so ready for solids”, and I think of my daughter. It’s only recently when I was talking to my BIL (Brother-In-Law) that I realized that “ready for solids” is a technical term. Thankfully it was too early for me to make any mistakes.
Kellymom.com has a nice list of signs to look out for to determine when baby is developmentally ready for solids:
- Baby can sit up well without support.
- Baby has lost the tongue-thrust reflex and does not automatically push solids out of his mouth with his tongue.
- Baby is ready and willing to chew.
- Baby is developing a “pincer” grasp, where he picks up food or other objects between thumb and forefinger. Using the fingers and scraping the food into the palm of the hand (palmar grasp) does not substitute for pincer grasp development.
- Baby is eager to participate in mealtime and may try to grab food and put it in his mouth.
Also, baby should be at least 6 months old so that her gut lining is fully developed to minimize the development of allergies.
But she is so ready for solids
What should you do if baby is ready for solids, but below 6 months? I’ve seen a lot of forum posters mention that they introduce solids at as early as 4 months. Kellymom.com suggests allowing baby to participate without giving her solids. For instance, giving her expressed breastmilk in a sippy cup, or giving frozen breastmilk slush (I didn’t see a recipe, but I would probably follow directions on how to make granite) while seated at the dining table.
In many ways, I’m glad that I’m blogging about my experience as a FTM, because it forces me to read up on issues so that I can rant responsibly online.