I see soooooo many women who are being pressured by family to start weaning early. Here are some quick facts for you to use to bat the unwanted pressure away if you need it!
When to start:
Guidance is that babies should be weaned at around 6 months of age. Until this age, milk (formula/breast) is all that a baby needs. Weaning too early (before your baby is physiologically ready) can increase the risk of picking up infections,may increase the risk of them developing food allergies and there may also be links between early weaning and adulthood obesity. So unless there is a medical reason to commence weaning early you are best to wait until around 6 months.
Signs that your baby is ready:
1. They can sit up (with some support if needed) and hold their head steady
2. They can purposefully reach out, pick up food and put it straight into their mouths
3. They have lost their tongue thrust reflex (pushing food out of their mouth with their tongue - this is a mechanism to stop them choking before they are ready for solid food)
The following are NOT signs that your baby is ready for weaning:
1. Waking in the night despite previously sleeping through
2. Watching other people eat food
3. Chewing on fists
4. Being a large baby