Your baby’s diet and any changes you make to it does not only have an impact inside their body, but also on their behaviour and how they relate to other people – traits which are just developing. As a result, their diet can play an active role in their growth. This is why, once your child reaches the age of around 6 months, their behaviour changes. They begin to show various signs of being ready to change the way they feed, moving on to eating solid or semi-solid foods.
Here is a non-exhaustive list of the signs that your 6-month-old baby is ready for weaning:
The table below shows the main stages of development in your child, in terms of their age, dietary habits, signs of physical development and social skills, from birth to age 2.
|PHYSICAL STAGE||SOCIAL STAGE|
|BIRTH TO 4 MONTHS||· Opens the mouth wide when the nipple or teat touches the centre of the mouth
· Suckles and swallows
|· Around 10 weeks, recognises where milk comes from|
|4 TO 6 MONTHS||· Increases their strength of suction
· Puts their fingers in their mouth
|· Socialises whilst drinking|
|6 TO 9 MONTHS||· Drinks from a cup held by an adult
· Eats soft foods off a spoon
· Begins to chew (with a circular motion)
· Likes to hold food and eat with their fingers
|· Likes eating at a table with other people
· Begins to show preferences and dislikes of certain foods
|9 TO 12 MONTHS||· Tries to use a spoon
· Improves grip to eat food with their fingers
· Eats at regular times
· Is conscious of what other people are doing
· Imitates others
|12 TO 18 MONTHS||· Picks up and releases food with their fingers
· Holds the spoon but uses it clumsily
· Turns the spoon towards their mouth
· Uses a cup, but clumsily
|· Wants food that others are eating
· Loves being the centre of attention
· Understands simple questions and and demands (such as ‘no’)
|18 TO 24 MONTHS||
· Sees their appetite diminish
· Likes eating with their fingers
· Likes tasting different textures
· Is easily distracted
· Prefers certain foods
· Finds routines important
But it’s not just physical signs that count; we have seen that your baby’s diet plays a role in their development as they begin to display new social behaviour:
To ensure that your baby’s nursery encourages their development and helps them grow, may we suggest the convertible nursery designed to grow with your child.
Try to remember that all babies are unique, and that failing to meet certain criteria does not necessarily mean that a baby has a problem – they are just doing things at their own pace! Keep an eye on things to make sure the discrepancy does not become significant, in which case it’s always recommended to see your paediatrician to make sure that your baby does not have an iron deficiency.
See our other articles on this topic!