Weaning the child
Sooner or later, infant’s nourishment plan is accommodated to include solid food. Mammal babies, including human children, at first usually receive mother’s milk, which provides them with all necessary nutrients. However, there comes a time when they need to get used to being fed solid, adult food.
Weaning process usually takes place when baby is approximately six months old. Note that this period is not the same for every child. Weaning is a step by step process, due to the fact that a baby’s digestive tract is not immediately prepared to digest solid food. It is desirable that solid food be introduced along with the breast milk so the transition is smoother.
What is usually first given to babies as a part of their new, solid food nutrition plan is soft food. Pulped fruits and vegetables are particularly suitable because very small children don’t yet have teeth and are not able to grind food with them.
There are some types of food that are not recommended for very small, freshly weaned children. The list includes nuts, gluten-rich food, salty food and sugar.
Troubles with weaning
The transition from breast milk to solid food can be a sentimental one, both for the mother and for the child. For example, there are some situations where the mother has decided to stop breast-feeding the child, but the baby just isn’t ready to quit the breast.
Some tips for smoother weaning process
Regardless of the fact, whether it is the infant or the mother that needs to end the breast-feeding phase, bearing in mind a few bits of info can be beneficial.
Sometimes a mother has had more instances of viral or bacterial affliction. These conditions are usually cured by medications, but the problem is that the medications can enter the mother’s milk. Since it is undesirable that the medicament enter baby’s body, mother needs to stop feeding the infant with her milk.
Practical steps towards weaning
Babies usually suckle from 8 to 12 times a day. Switching from this regime to that where the child is given solid food is a process that requires some time.
The process of weaning can roughly look like this: the mother can eliminate one breast-feeding session during the day and instead introduce, say, formula or some solid nourishment. The body of the mother may require a period of adjustment to this change. After some time, the mother can do the same with another session of breast-feeding, again giving the body enough time to adapt to the rearrangement.
Follow this pattern until all the breast-feeding sessions are substituted for regular, solid food meals.