Helpful Tips For Feeding Your Baby
Whether you are first time parents or you have had other children before, feeding a baby can be challenging. However, it is important that you ensure that your baby is well fed so that they can grow and develop well. It also provides the right opportunity for you and your baby to bond. Some of the useful tips you can use when it comes to feeding includes:
Tips for Breastfeeding and Bottle Feeding:
During the first few months, it is advisable that you breastfeed your baby exclusively if possible. This is because when you have a new born baby, their immunity has not developed well, and they are very vulnerable to infections. Breastfeeding also helps boost immunity and is rich in all the nutrients your baby needs for growth. Some parents find that expressing breast milk and using the bottle to feed the baby allows both father and mother to share in the role of feeding. However, there are circumstances where the mother cannot breast feed and they have to use the baby formula. Whichever method you use, always remember:
– Positioning: Hold your baby on your lap while supporting the head with one hand. Always ensure that the baby is held close to you so that they can feel safe and feed well. If you are using the bottle, tilt it so that your baby does not strain to take in food, suck in too much air. If you are breastfeeding, then you should support your breast while the baby is feeding so that it does not block their nose while they are feeding.
– Burping: After feeding, your baby will need to be burped. This is because they take in air and the only way to help them expel it is by holding them against your shoulder and pat them lightly on the back. If your baby is not burped, they will become uncomfortable and fussy, so it is important to do it after they have been fed. Remember to give your baby small breaks during feeding to minimize the amount of air they take in.
When your baby is a little grown, maybe from four months, then you may decide to introduce solid foods into their meals. When weaning your baby, you should always consider the following
–Foods to avoid: Foods such as sea food, honey, nuts and cow milk are to be avoided when you baby is still young because the baby’s digestive system has not developed well enough to process them.
–Take it slow: It may be exciting to see your baby starting out on solids. However, you need to introduce the foods one at a time. This will ensure that you are able to monitor any allergic reaction they might have towards some types of food.
– Smooth texture: Ensure that the solid food you are giving is either well mashed or blended. Since the baby is not used to taking in solid, they might choke if you give them large lumps. You should also give them the food in small portions, like maybe half a tea spoon for a start and allow them to get used to it. Use a plastic spoon with a smooth edges so that you do not harm the baby’s delicate gums.
– Water: You may need to give your baby water once in a day, especially if the weather is too hot. Always check that the water is in the right temperature; neither too hot nor cold.
Most parents always wonder the right portion they should give their babies, and when to know if the baby is full. Babies feeding is mostly dependent on their stages of development. A new born might not need as much feeding as a 3 month old. You will need to increase portions as they grow and learn to know your baby’s pattern. When the baby is full, they may start turning their mouths away from food or spit it out. When babies are young, especially new born babies, it is best to let them feed on demand.
The most challenging part if feeding is when you have a fussy eater who never seems to feed as well as you want them to. At first, you may need to talk to your baby’s pediatrician to check if everything is okay. If your baby does not have a medical condition, then all you need is patience. Keep encouraging the baby to feed, but do not lose your temper when they refuse. Maintain a positive atmosphere, be cheerful. The fact is, when they get really hungry, they will eat. Meanwhile, keep introducing new foods in their diet, and at some point, you will learn what they love, and feeding will become easier.