You've gone through pregnancy, child birth and now are in the early months of baby's life...you have probably figured out by now that people have opinions about EVERYTHING. I hate to tell you, but it gets worse when people start thinking your baby is ready for solids.
I think I received every opinion in the book regarding rice cereal from the time my daughter was just a few weeks old until she was 6 months. "Put it in her bottle to help her sleep" or "Give it to her before bed to help with reflux" or "You are giving her rice cereal ALREADY?"...I heard it all. So what do you do?!
As always, check with your pediatrician before starting your baby on solids or anything new for that matter. Most articles I've read say that baby doesn't need anything but milk until they are about 6 months. If you look at the comments under some of these articles, you can see that some Mom's give their children rice cereal as early as just a few weeks old...some wait until 9 to 12 months old.
I started giving my daughter rice cereal right around 4 1/2 months old. She was waking up hungry WAY too much at night and I'd been told over and over again that it would help her sleep. She just got a tiny bit mixed with breast milk and fed to her with a spoon but you know what, it totally worked for us! It also DID help with her reflux (she was on medication at this point) and it helped with spitting up too. Rice cereal was our miracle and I loved it.
So you think your baby is ready for something a little satisfying than milk, milk and more milk? Great! Give it a try! Here's how we started:
- Put about 1 tablespoon of rice cereal to 4 -5 tablespoons of breast milk or formula. I found that my milk made it a bit runnier than formula, but that was perfect for the beginning.
- Set baby in a bouncy seat or swing if they aren't sitting up on their own yet. Make sure the head is propped up...you don't want baby to choke (same as with bottle feeding).
- Have lots of burp rags, wipes and bibs ready to go!
- Using a soft baby spoon, "pour" small amounts of the cereal into baby's mouth. The consistency should be SUPER runny so the pouring method is easiest.
- Be prepared for a HUGE mess and maybe even a few tears. My daughter actually did amazing with cereal...it was love at first bite. But if your baby doesn't like it, don't give up! Eating from a spoon and the texture of the cereal are both new experiences for baby, they need some practice and words of encouragement.
When did you start giving your baby solids? Did you start with rice cereal or something more adventurous?