Weaning Week is Here!
We hope you are having a lovely week, we have been very busy in Cognikids HQ! We have been sharing our top tips for weaning all week on our socials; be sure to head over to check them out – Click for our Instagram!
Below, we’re sharing Ollwyn’s top tips for weaning – please get in touch if you have any tips that we might have missed!
- There are a number of different approaches to weaning – traditional spoon-fed weaning, baby-led weaning and the combined approach. With traditional weaning, babies are spoon-fed first, (eating smooth puréed or mashed food) and chew later. With baby-led weaning, babies learn to manage lumps and chew finger food from the beginning.
- The combined weaning approach is a great way to start. It means that the same food is offered in two ways, purée and finger food. Finger food gives your baby a great oral motor workout and this helps with the development of their oral motor skills. By also offering purée you can be sure that your baby is getting sufficient volume of food, although sometimes there is more on their face, highchair and floor than in their mouth!
- I like to recommend avocado as a first food because they are easily digested (just make sure they are nicely ripe) and they don’t have a strong flavour. Avocado can also work for whichever weaning approach you choose to go with.
- For those wishing to make the purée or traditional weaning method more baby-led, parents and caregivers can pre-load a Cognikids Dip Spoon with the puree and place it on the highchair table in front of the baby. They will then pick it up and feed themselves. Encouraging self-feeding is very important and is why the baby-led approach is so valued. It also helps to teach self-regulation, so that they will stop feeding when they feel full and satisfied. When babies are spoon-fed they can often be overfed and when this happens repeatedly, it actually teaches the brain to stop telling the body that it is full. As I always say, “independent feeders become independent thinkers”.
- A key pointer to remember is that the action of feeding takes all 8 of our sensory systems working together to complete successfully. It’s a very complex task. Often early feeding issues can be a flag for future problems. So, if there are any issues or areas of concern seek advice from a professional as soon as possible.
- When weaning becomes messy and your baby is wearing most of their food, don’t panic and wipe it off right away. This is an incredible sensory time with a huge amount of learning and brain wiring for your baby. Let the child feel the textures, smell their food and basically have some fun! Your baby must get messy before they can understand how not to be messy.
For more tips be sure to follow us on social @cognikids_ !
Until next time,
Team Cognikids 🙂