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Please help i'm wavering about finger foods / BLW / mush

(19 Posts)
crevee Tue 21-Jul-09 21:18:55

I started weaning ds 3 weeks ago using the puree route - everyone i know is doing this and he was bottle fed from 5 weeks (please don't judge i feel guilty enough) and has always had probs with knowing when he was full so not sure BLW was right for him although i really like the idea.

He is a very slow starter though, pretty much has to feed himself with spoon & often refuses to eat more than a tiny amount. I'm paranoid about ending up with a fussy eaterblush.

He is very happy to stuff food in his mouth esp if i'm eating too and has sucked happily on toast & butter, rice cake & cheese. Only problem is he gags/chokes (goes red & eyes run & i get scared & pat him on his back) as he is teething and so manages to break up rice cakes / cheese / toast into bits he then tries to swallow & chokes on. After one rice cake incident he coughed all afternoon and eveming!

Is this normal or is it because he's eating puree too? Has anyone combined the two? Do i just have to be brave and keep going with finger foods & choking? I know this is a massive post but i'm so confused and HV here are USELESS so any help / advice is appreciated

theyoungvisiter Tue 21-Jul-09 21:27:44

how old is he?

Gagging is different from choking and nothing to worry about - it's just their way of getting stuff forward in their mouths quick if it slips back too far. DS2 did this quite a bit for the first couple of weeks of BLW but is now much, much better.

Choking is where it actually gets stuck in their windpipe. Basically as long as they are breathing and making noises they are probably fine!

I don't think there is any reason not to combine purees and finger foods - after all most people have done that for years - but if he's hard to feed with purees then perhaps it's better to offer more finger foods and hopefully with practice he'll get better at manoeuvring them round his mouth.

What about trying softer foods rather than brittle things like ricecakes which are prone to snap?

Current favourites with my DS include:

very fat slices of tomato cut in rounds, and he then pokes out the seeds and uses the hole as a kind of handle.

well cooked scrambled egg - which he just crams into his mouth - it's very funny to watch!

the ol' ubiquitous pasta and "stuff"

roast veg are surprisingly popular - fingers of courgette, peppers, etc.

roast chicken wings - not the bendy tip but either of the other two joints are great - do you know the bits I mean? I take them off roast chicken and we eat the rest with DS1. They are particularly good if they are teething as they can kind of gnaw on the bone and mush the fibres in their mouth. Plus the fibres from the wings tend to be softer and more flavourful than breast etc.

theyoungvisiter Tue 21-Jul-09 21:30:12

oh btw I should have said that very slow start is absolutely normal for many babies - neither of mine have ever done that little bird-mouth thing!

DS1 accepted teeny spoonfuls of yoghurt but other than that refused all spoons pretty much, and ate almost no solids until about 9 months.

DS2 has a brilliant trick where he can actually make himself vomit on the texture of purees so I have given up offering anything on a spoon. He loves mushing finger foods but I doubt much goes down.

Food is really just for fun/textures at this age so don't worry too much about how much is going down.

sweetnitanitro Tue 21-Jul-09 21:30:46

How old is your DS? Have you tried him with some soft fruit (like banana or melon) or some mashed potato? Toast and rice cakes might be a bit scratchy for him.

My DD has both finger food and purees (well, she is on mashed food now mainly) but her finger foods are stuff she can gum on easily, she only has 2 and a bit teeth.

mrshedgehog Tue 21-Jul-09 21:31:25

I would do what you feel most comfortable with and keep trying all methods. I've not tried BLW but purees with finger food worked for me.

My DD choked quite a lot in the early stages so I mainly used purees gradually increasing lumps - soft fruits etc were offered but usually just played with or spread around !! If i put chunks of fruit etc. in her mouth she would pull a face and spit it out. About 2 weeks ago at 9 months finger feeding suddenly improved and now DD will eat almost anything offered. Just be patient and keep trying things it will come with time.


MrsMattie Tue 21-Jul-09 21:41:41

Take it nice & slow, let your baby go at his own pace and try not to worry (easier said than done, I know!).

My DD is 8 mths old and is still not hugely interested in food. She only eats very small amounts of mush and has no interest in finger foods other than the odd bit of banana.

All babies are different. Milk is their main nourishment until their around a year old, so it really isn't a huge deal and definitely not worth comparing your baby with any other.

crevee Tue 21-Jul-09 22:49:20

He will be 6 months at the end of the month.

I'm confused when i should start introducing lumps as he doesn't seem to like lumpier food like mashed banana.

He did try chunks of banana but he found it too slippery & lost interest but maybe the bit wasn't big enough, how big should it be?

Main reason i stress is that HV (and pretty much everyone else!) says he needs to be eating solids to sleep through the night - he's waking hungry still....sad

Thanks for the reassurance though everyone, we'll just keep going & try and add some more finger foods

theyoungvisiter Wed 22-Jul-09 09:08:14

If he's not yet 6 months then seriously DO NOT STRESS! Firstly he's very young so it's not surprising if he's finding finger foods hard to manage - I would put the whole lot on the back burner for a few weeks and concentrate on milk feeds.

Secondly, sorry but IMHO (I am not a medical professional) your HV is spouting total rubbish about his needing solids to sleep through the night.

Most of the babies I know continued to wake with hunger until well past the age of one - DS2 is 7 months (nearly 8) and absolutely needs at least one and often 2 milk feeds in the night.

DS1 needed milk feeds at night until well into his first year, and continued to night wake even when not being fed right up until the age of 3.

Night waking is nothing to worry about - and unfortunately solids will not necessarily make your baby sleep longer. And whatever other mothers/HVs tell you - babies who sleep through without needing a ESPECIALLY at 6 months, are in the minority.

theyoungvisiter Wed 22-Jul-09 09:11:48

sorry, that should have read babies who sleep through without needing a feed especially at 6 months are in the minority

Rhian82 Wed 22-Jul-09 09:21:13

Yep, the thing about solids helping them sleep through is a complete myth, sorry!

HensMum Wed 22-Jul-09 09:22:56

He's teeny still. Is he still having all the milk he used to before weaning? If so, don't worry, just consider any food he has as a bonus.

I started weaning DS at about 6 months, mainly on purees but with some finger foods too. It took him a couple of weeks to get into purees and a bit longer to get into finger foods. Soft fruit and veg worked best as finger foods to start.

To be honest, it does sound as though he's not quite ready. Don't stress about how much he's having.

mrshedgehog Wed 22-Jul-09 09:47:08

For the first few months he will probably get on best with purees. I used a book as a guide which just advised fruits such as pear, apple, carrot, sweet potato etc to start off with. Not lumpy at all. I've found lumps weren't coped with well until 8 months or so after I had introduced a variety of fruits and vegetables.

If he's not even six months yet don't worry about how much food it's more about tastes.

I agree with theyoungvisitor - sleeping through is not the main objective of weaning. DD has just started sleeping through and is 9 months.

fgpl Wed 22-Jul-09 10:00:02

please could you tell me what BLW means. Daughter 5 1/2 months and feel I should know.

KirstyJC Wed 22-Jul-09 10:09:55

Baby Led Weaning - basically from 6 months you start weaning by letting baby self-feed. This means no purees, no mush - just give 'em what you're having and they'll eat it if they want it.

I hadn't heard of it with DS1 but have been doing it with DS2 who is now 8 1/2 months and it is SO easy!! Eg - For breakfast he had toast/marmalade, porridge, a strawberry and some pineapple juice (normally diluted but today I forgot and he drank LOADS blush). For lunch we are having leftover rabbit stew - he had some last night for dinner and picked out all the carrots, then all the celery, then all the meat, then licked his fingers to get all the juice). He often has sandwiches, cheese spread is his favourite, also soup with bread rolls, tomatoes, veg sticks etc.

Basically he will try absolutely anything you put in front of him, and you never need to worry about having baby food - he just has what you do.

Try the book by Gill Rapley (on Amazon) it is great and very reassuring.

There is also a thread on here which I was on but have been too lazy to update for ages...blush.

Montifer Wed 22-Jul-09 10:29:54

Loads of useful BLW tips and a great forum for 'live' advice here and general weaning advice here
Remember "food is fun until they're one" !
DS didn't start eating 'properly' until 8 months-ish, it seemed to click for him when he mastered a pincer grip. He now guzzles everything edible in his sight so no concerns about fussy eating grin
Sorry, I agree with other posters, HV is talking nonsense regarding the sleeping through eating myth, DS still wakes at least once and he's 13 months (not what you wanted to hear I'm sure). I subscribe to the theory that they sleep through when they are ready.
Wholeheartedly recommend BLW, we've had lots of stress free fun this way (and I've watched a lot of mush preparing friends getting very stressed and spending hours on baby food prep)

crevee Wed 22-Jul-09 13:42:54

Just logged on and realised in my sleep deprived state i put his age wrong, he'll be 7 months at the end of the month and we didn't start anything solid until he was 6 months, sorry everyone.

Just tried some more toast fingers and pear pieces at lunch and he guzzled at the pear when he finally managed to pick it up off the table, i peeled half of the piece so it might be easier to hang onto. Didn't gag too badly so will ust keep going with mush & finger foods i think.

crevee Wed 22-Jul-09 13:46:03

Also not surprised (if slightly disappointed) HV is talking nonsense, in my experience that's all they do talk....

And still waking at 13months Montifer, ouch...have a feeling we're heading that way too

cara2244 Mon 27-Jul-09 22:14:57

I got worried about all the advice and started weaning at 4.5 months to try and get my BB to sleep through - at the time he was having a growth spurt and waking for feeds every two hours. I was a zombie and would have tried anything.

After puree feeding for a (stressful) couple of weeks, we stopped and went back to milk only. I came to the conclusion that, for my baby at least, solid food DOES NOT = sleeping through the night. Now he is 7 months and a week and that is still the case. No matter how much solid food he eats, he still wakes. I have tried all sorts and have now given up and just accept the fact that he wakes up at night. He sleeps in our bed from around 4/5am most nights - I keep it to myself as I know there will be all sorts of comments from friends and grandmas!!

He is BLWd and it works really well for us. We enjoy meals together and I don't worry about how much he's eating. I share my food with him, which keeps me healthy as well, and he has what he likes. When he's sick, he just has milk as that's all he wants.I was very worried about choking and made sure I knew how to deal with it. We are very lucky as we have not had to deal with any choking so far.

Don't worry about advice and go with what works for you and your baby.

cara2244 Mon 27-Jul-09 22:18:17

A couple more things: I would also recommend the Gill rapley book. Although I normally avoid books on babies (having thrown Gina Ford in the bin about a week after my BB was born), this one is really good.

Also spoon feeding - my BB at 7 months can take a loaded spoon and feed himself. We do that with porridge, weetabix and yoghurt, In fact if offered a spoon he will grab it and feel what's on it before putting it in his mouth. Not so useful with calpol of course....

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