Understandably weaning can be a daunting and scary time for parents, especially if your baby is happy on their milk and in a settled routine. Often parents think that by cutting their baby's milk they won't get enough food, especially in the early stages of weaning, but with the right balance and know how of when to cut feeds this shouldn't be an issue.
What does the plan consist of?
To begin with I would need you to send me your baby's current feeding and sleeping pattern, 3 days is enough to give an idea of this. I will then use this to create an individualised plan for you to follow over the next week. The plan will have an age appropriate routine with the guidance of where to change milk feeds and how to go about it such as cutting the amount of feed your baby may be having.
I would also advise on best products to use when weaning, shared through an amazon list.
The plan also includes daily support messages for the week of routine setting so you can send messages as things progress and what may need to be done next and, at the end of the day, a summary of the tracker.
The plans are full of professional information about routines and the things you need to know.
At the end of your week there will be a sign off phone call to give any further advice you could use going forward.
Baby led or adult led?
The way in which you chose to wean your baby is completely your choice and I will incorporate this into the plan.
Often you don't know how your baby is going to react to food so it's nice to allow them to explore through baby led, where they use their skills to pick up food and feed themselves. This allows them to discover new textures through both touching and eating. Baby led isn't necessarily just giving them finger foods but allowing them to get messy and independent in the way they eat.
Fears of choking and wanting to ensure your baby gets a good amount of food leads parents to do solely adult led, which is where you would feed your baby and most likely of pureed meals. This too is a perfectly acceptable way for your baby to discover food, but what I do encourage is some age appropriate solids, such as the huge amount of snacks available on the market now.
When should I start weaning?
Whilst many people and companies say you can start from 4 months, government guidelines are from 6 months. Whilst I agree with them I often suggest introducing first tastes at 5 and a half months as it's more about exploration then nutritional needs.
Whilst the weaning plan described is for pre-weaning preparation I can do the plan for older babies who are yet to get into a weaning routine. This can happen in situations such as a baby who is a bad eater, having tried it but you're still not sure whether your baby is having too much milk and so forth.