Experiencing different textures encourages your baby to learn how to chew, this can help speech development.
As well as helping baby learn to eat, solid food plays a part in the physical developments in the mouth, strengthening the jaw, lips and tongue muscles that are needed for speech.
Babies grow quickly!
By 6 months they should have doubled their birth weight, and by 12 months they should have tripled it. Introducing solid foods help babies learn how to eat.
- To move food around in their mouth
- To chew, swallow and eventually bite
- To self-feed,
- To enjoy new tastes and textures
If you’re not sure whether your baby is ready for their first food you can look out for some other developmental milestones, such as improved head and neck control which can help babies swallow food safely. Children are able to suck, bite and munch on foods, even before their first teeth have appeared, as their jaw movements are developing and their gums are hard enough to break up food.
Kiddylicious gently baked rice Wafers are an ideal way to introduce solid food, and are firm enough to sooth sore gums. With a light texture that dissolves easily, wafers have been developed specifically for young babies, and are low in sugar and gluten free. Their chunky size is perfect for little hands.
Firm textured snacks can help soothe sore gums, keeping mum and baby happy
Ideal first foods should melt in the mouth easily. Firmer textures can given to help to soothe sore gums. Babies who are chewing on their hands, toys and anything they can grasp could be looking for comfort during teething.
Between 6 and 12 months, as you and your baby grow in confidence in trying new foods, you will have fun trying new flavours, and experiencing new tastes and textures. The variety that your baby is given now will mean they are likely to enjoy a varied diet as they grow older. As children become familiar with solid foods you can gradually start to introduce meals, and reduce milk intake.
Self-feeding can help develop hand-eye co-ordination and independence around eating
As baby starts to try out the “pincer grip” from around 7 to 10 months, they will start to bring food (and anything they can get their little hands on) up to their mouths. Most children can self-feed using finger foods by 8 months. Use mild flavours and gentle textures as finger foods to encourage self -feeding.