Struggling To Get Baby To Eat
My 9 month old won't put anything in his mouth. He drinks his bottle and will eat yoghurt and fruit. what can we do ???
Reply From New Baby and Beyond
Have you tried a smooth transition with weaning? By this I mean will your baby take smooth baby food? Mashed up potatoes or fruit?
When you say he won't put anything in his mouth, do you mean finger foods? or just certain flavoured foods?
To be able to enjoy eating solid foods, your baby's tongue thrust reflex needs to fade away. The tongue thrust reflex is what causes your baby to thrust his tongue forward every time something goes into his mouth. This is natures way of preventing choking when your baby is very young. It normally disappears at around 6 months of age, but as all babies develop differently it could be sooner or later.
You could start again with smooth baby purée's, keep trying different flavours until you find some that baby likes. Then (not too quickly) try a lumpier texture to his favourite flavours. The idea is not to rush him, let him take his time and discover new flavours and textures at his pace.
Finger foods shouldn't be forced until your baby is ready, trying to force your baby to eat something that he's not comfortable with could work against you, and he will end up not wanting to try anything new.
You could always try finger foods along with his fruit or yoghurt. Let him hold the food and praise him when he puts it in his mouth, if he doesn't seem interested, don't worry, just try gentle encouragement. Give him finger foods that will soften in his mouth, such as a bread stick or rusk (soft biscuit) This way he is less likely to choke.
Some babies are very fussy when it comes to different flavours and textures, and they will need a little perseverance to get them to stick with new flavours. Your baby will get there in the end, try not to worry as your baby will pick up on any anxiety that you feel about his eating.
If you do get very worried then do talk to your health professional, they can give you very good advice on weaning and feeding your baby.
Hope this helps
New Baby & Beyond
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