Baby Feeding Problems – Four Scenarios & How to Deal With Each
To onlookers, feeding a baby can seem like a cute activity, what with that little bundle of joy seemingly eager to get his fill of food. However, to parents, this can feel like a gruelling affair, with all sorts of problems to encounter.
So, how do you deal with the most common baby feeding problems? We have come up with a simple guide to help you out.
Baby Feeding Problem 1: Your child spits out food
This problem usually occurs from your baby’s birth to around 6 months and is characterized by your baby thrusting his tongue to push food out of his mouth during bites. This is mainly because your baby’s digestive system is still not yet fully matured. In particular, the esophageal sphincters (the rings of muscle at the ends of the esophagus) are not yet able to fully close. This causes them to not be able to hold food from moving back from the stomach, leading to your baby spitting out food.
Luckily, in most cases, this is just a minor annoyance rather than an outright problem, as long as your baby is well fed. Your baby gaining his proper weight is already a good indicator that he is being well fed. In this case, you can minimize spitting by putting him in a proper, semi-upright position during feeding. Also, burp him regularly during mealtime.
Baby Feeding Problem 2: Your child is a picky eater
Once you begin introducing other food items besides formula or milk, your baby’s choices become more varied. However, there will come a point where he finds one particular food item he likes the most and would not want to eat anything else. And this can become a struggle between you and your young one.
One reason why babies become picky eaters is because they find their favorite foods as a source of comfort. They also use insisting only on a particular food as a means to test their boundaries with their parents. These are normal reactions as they slowly acclimate themselves to their environment.
When dealing with this situation, act as if you are not that concerned with him not eating, as it can lead him to needlessly use food to get your attention. However, do note that you might want to relent a little from time to time, but you can use this opportunity to introduce other food items in small amounts. You can also give him some multivitamins to ensure he gets the right nutrients he needs.
Baby Feeding Problem 3: Your child eats a lot one day and a little the next
Irregular feeding can be observed from your child’s first year to his third. However, experts say that there is nothing to worry about this one. They point out that young children are actually a lot better in assessing their hunger than adults. Experts add that the period from 1-year-old to 3 years have growth spurts, which lead to them eating more than usual.
One way to ensure your child is eating the right amount of food that he needs is by setting a reasonable time limit during meals. Also, make sure that your child isn’t drinking too much milk or too much juice, as this can decrease his appetite for food. Get him used to drinking water when he is thirsty by gradually diluting his cup of milk or juice more and more.
Baby Feeding Problem 4: Your baby develops rashes
Seeing rashes form on your baby’s skin moments after feeding can send you into a state of panic. However, before you go nuts and take away the food you think is the culprit for this, you might want to observe first to see other potential signs of an allergic response, such as vomiting, watery eyes, and wheezing.
If your suspicion is indeed correct, the best thing that you should do is to call your paediatrician. He will likely tell you to serve the particular food item again to see if it induces the same effects. If it does, take it out of your child’s menu and only reintroduce it once your doctor gives a go signal. Luckily though, most children get over their food allergies as they grow older.