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Thread: 5 month old seems ready / desperate! Start BLS early or hold off?

  1. #1

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    Default 5 month old seems ready / desperate! Start BLS early or hold off?

    We're planning on doing BLS with DS (after a brilliant experience with DD) and starting at about 6 months. He's currently 5 months and 4 days.

    ATM he sits with us at dinner time and stares at us putting food in our mouths and in the past wek has started smacking his lips and crying / shouting and sounding really frustrated. He mouths EVERYTHING - but has done since he had any control of his hands at all. More recently though, he's been shoving my fingers in his mouth and chewing on them as if he is trying to rip the meat off the bones (hurts!!). It's not gumming down like with teething, it really feels like he is trying to rip off food! Today he started lunging at my lunch, so out of curiosity I relented and gave him a big fleshy bit of tomato. He chewed and sucked and played with it for ages. I think a little bit went in but most came out again as he still def has the tongue-thrust reflex. When I took it away, he cracked it and was inconsolable!

    My gut tells me he wants food. But my intellect says 'not 'till 6 months, not 'till he can sit up a bit better and has lost more of the tongue-thrust reflex'. I've read a great deal on here about gut maturation etc and it makes sense to wait. Except for the worry that my little man is going to spend the next 4 weeks utterly frustrated as he has such a strong drive to eat!

    I'm really confused. Any thoughts or advice? Happy for strong opinions either way.



    TIA

  2. #2

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    If he hasn't lost the tongue-thrust reflex I would wait. I think he just wants to do whatever you're doing, just a normal curious baby. I would hold out another 2 wks at least

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    I am in the same boat with my DD except she has just turned 4 months. She has no tongue thrust reflex though - if she has food in her mouth she will eat it. She gets overly excited if I am eating and frantically grabs for it and shoves it in her mouth if she catches a piece. Today I was eating what was apparently a mighty yummy looking cracker and when I didn't give her any she did a face dive towards me and latched on to my lips and tried to suck it out of my mouth!! (Gross BTW!)

    I am holding her off before I start giving her regular meals, but I have been giving her the odd bit of fruit/vege/rusk to suck on.

  4. #4

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    If he still has the reflex then he's not quite physically ready. It probably won't be too much longer. It is confusing when they behave like this - they're so sure they desperately need it. There's no harm in waiting a bit - except to your eardrums maybe

  5. #5

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    Some babies are ready earlier or later than others, they don't have 6 months programmed into them. If I had a baby that was ready a bit early I'd go with it and give them food. I mean if you are saying the reflex is still there he probably won't get much down but he will get used to feeling/rubbing/squashing it all, which is all good!

  6. #6

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    DS was the same - I stopped putting him at the table with us because not giving him food seemed so mean - we did start three days ago with BLS - he is 6 months today. My main reason for not starting earlier was how he sat up, his sitting up is still not great but ok (DD was sitting great by time started BLS at 6 months) and the fact even with BLS it is still more work than breastfeeding (A big reason to wait in my opinion :-) ) . He is very very keen on getting the food into his mouth now have started but isn't really swallowing yet - so for us was probably right to wait. Although looking back I think when I felt mean a few weeks back I could have just given him a piece of broccoli etc to suck on and he isn't really ingesting any so doubt would have done any harm. I think the other thing to remember is they don't know what food is, they don't know that food will take away hunger etc - they just want to do what they see others doing - so will probably be just as happy with something that looks food like to chew on.

  7. #7

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    Thanks ladies. And sorry DS! Will hold off for a little longer until reflex goes and he is a bit more 'upright' I think. If he wasn't dairy intolerant I would consider giving him a rusk so at least he was having a bit of the experience without actually ingesting food, but as far as I know, they have dairy in them right?

  8. #8

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    yes they do

  9. #9

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    Like your new avvy by the way Santosha

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by wysiwyg View Post
    I think the other thing to remember is they don't know what food is, they don't know that food will take away hunger etc - they just want to do what they see others doing - so will probably be just as happy with something that looks food like to chew on.
    I think this is a great point and a great idea. Do you have any play food in the house that he could play with while you eat? It would possibly also be good for his motor skills and hand eye co-ordination for when he starts on real food

  11. #11

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    Hehe. Yup, have plastic and knitted food. Mmmmm wooly.

    Great idea. DD will think that's hilarious. Either that, or she'll get all bossy big-sister-knows-best and tell him off!

  12. #12

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    A toddler watching a baby do BLS adds a whole new dimension of fun "He's putting it in his eye", "He doesn't like broccoli he pulls a funny face when he eats it" "you have to eat it not just suck on it" "not on your cheek in your mouth silly boy" "he is covered in pumpkin" etc etc. I can just imagine the "that's not real food it's play food" comments.

  13. #13

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    My DS went through a similar thing at around the same age. I was able to give him rusks, but actually found carrots a better alternative. I would give him a whole one, straight out of the fridge so it was nice and cool, peel it and then give it to him to gum/mouth. He loved it. It had a little bit of flavour and the cold sensation was a hit, but he wasn't ingesting anything. A lot of people told me I was crazy and that he would choke (the same one's who poopoo'ed BLS too), but I kept a close eye on him when he had one and he never managed to actually bite in to it or break it.

    Also, I'm sure I've heard people talk about making their own rusks. Maybe do a quick google and see if you can find a dairy-free recipe...

    HTH

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