6 important things to do BEFORE your baby starts on solid foods
1. Consider taking an infant CPR/choking class or if you already have, brush up on what to do in the event of a choking situation. While it's very unlikely your baby will truely choke (vs gagging) if you're using safe feeding techniques, it can happen & you'll feel much more confident if you know exactly what to do.
2. Bring baby to the table to let him/her watch you eat. Hold your baby on your lap. Talk to your baby about foods you are eating. Say the names and tell him/her how the food tastes.
3. Start letting your baby play with spoons, cups, and bowls outside of mealtime.
4. Take note of your baby's breast/bottle feeding schedule and try to get a general sense of when he/she eats. Also note when during the day he/she is most calm, alert, interactive. This will serve as a guide for scheduling solids food meals. Aim to identify a time when your baby is awake and well rested, calm, and not hungry. First meals are all about taste and exploration, not eating and quantity so there is no need for your baby to be hungry.
5. Talk to your pediatrician about any potential allergy risks or special considerations for your baby with feeding.
6. Have the equipment you need ready: out of the packaging, clean, set up if needed, & familiar to you so your not struggling or using incorrectly at first. I suggest considering the following:
- non-breakable bowls/plates
- child size spoons
- high chair or booster seat with safety straps
- splash mat
- lots of towels
- an apron for you to wear (sounds excessive but feeding is messy business at first!)