What is the ideal 8 month old baby feeding schedule? Now that your child is eight months old, he or she will most likely be past the nighttime feeding phase and the tricky first introductions to solid foods. However, that doesn’t mean that you’re completely in the clear of all feeding problems just yet.
In fact, many new parents find themselves struggling to figure out what the best feeding schedule is for their children. Deciding what your child should be eating and when can be quite a personal thing and something that you and your own little one will really have to discover on your own.
However, recognizing and understanding what your child really needs and what you can do to make sure that he or she gets it can be incredibly helpful in creating this kind of schedule. Here are just a few tips that you should keep in mind when it comes to creating your child’s new eating schedule so that everyone ends up happy and healthy at the end of every day.
8 Month Old Baby Feeding Schedule
While you might be dying to introduce your child to all your favorite foods, it’s important to remember that infants’ tummies are still developing. While you certainly want to start him or her off on solid foods, he or she is not exactly ready to dive into the four-course meals that you’re probably excited to share with him or her. In fact, at this age, the most important food that he or she can consume will be breastmilk or formula.
Breastmilk and formula will still be his or her primary form of nutrition at this point in their lives. It has almost everything that he or she will need in order to grow healthily and still needs to be the principal form of food.
However, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t start exploring a range of new, exciting table foods in order to get your child accustomed to these new and fun flavors. In fact, for an 8 month old baby feeding schedule, there’s an extensive list of things that are safe for your child to try. This list includes things such as mashed carrots, sweet potatoes, and cauliflower in addition to slices of fruit such as bananas, pears, and even mango. Feel free to give your child small pieces of baked chicken and fish or try giving him or her a taste of meatballs.
It is important to remember, though, that keeping an eye on your child whenever he or she is eating still needs to be the main priority and keep whatever you give him or her cut extremely small. That way, you can avoid the rare but still completely possible choking situation. And remember that if this is something you’re really concerned about, you can always take an infant CPR class in order to give yourself the peace of mind that you need.
What Foods Should Be Avoided?
While the list of what your child can eat at eight months is actually much longer than many parents initially imagine, there are still a number of different foods that you’ll want to continue to avoid until he or she is older. Almost all pediatricians recommend that parents avoid foods such as hot dogs, popcorn, and grapes that are considered potential choking hazards for young children. Keep in mind that you want to give him or her foods that are easy to break down just by gumming and that easily dissolve in the mouth. That way, you can be sure that your child will be safe while he or she explores these new options.
How Can You Tell That Baby Is Ready?
If you’ve been waiting to introduce your child to solid foods, you may be wondering still whether or not he or she is really ready for the jump. While most children will be more than ready by eight months, there are a few signs that you should look for that will tell you when your baby is ready to start exploring the world of real food. First, make sure that he or she is able to completely sit up by himself or herself without any support from either you or a pillow. If a child cannot stay upright, it’s much more likely that he or she will end up choking after falling backwards or forwards and forcing the food in his or her mouth down the throat.
Another sign that you can look out for is that he or she opens his or her mouth for a spoon when you bring it close. This is a clear sign that he or she is aware of other options and is open to trying out this new experience. Finally, check and see whether or not your child has decent hand-to-mouth coordination. If your child is constantly missing his or her mouth when he or she tries to eat, it will most likely result in getting more food on his or her surroundings. Just give him or her a little bit more time until he or she is really ready.
How Much Should an Eight-Month-Old Eat?
At this point in time, it’s important to remember that, again, your child’s main food source should still be either breastmilk or formula. And, generally speaking, children at this age should be consuming anywhere between 24 and 32 ounces of breastmilk or formula per day in order to get all the nutritional benefits that they need. While supplementing this with solid food will also provide them with basic nutritional benefits, it will also increase their calorie intake. Most pediatricians believe that children of this age should be consuming around 825 k/cal per day for boys and 765 k/cal per day for girls. However, when you’re considering these calculations, make sure you take into account what actually makes it into your child’s mouth and not necessarily the amount that you serve to him or her.
When Should Children Eat Solid Foods?
While you may want to get your child on a more regular feeding schedule, the fact of the matter is that the feeding schedule that he or she currently has with breastmilk or bottle feedings will still be the primary concern. However, a fun way to get your child more involved with solid foods is to include him or her at the table during mealtimes. Try giving baby a bit of his or her own mashed-up vegetables to enjoy while you and your partner sit down for dinner together. Not only will this get him or her accustomed to sitting and eating with everyone but it will also help him or her adjust to the idea of feeding at these particular set times. Also, enjoying meals together can be a great bonding experience for everyone involved, especially a baby who will enjoy being a part of something that he or she may have been excluded from up until this point.
The idea of sitting your child down and exploring new and exciting culinary options can be one of the best experiences for new parents. However, there is a wide range of concerns and doubts that can plague parents’ minds as well when they first start out. Understanding what your child really needs and how to best provide it at this in-between age can make a world of difference in helping him or her along through the process. Rather than turning introducing your child to solid foods into a chore, make it into a fun adventure for both of you. Keep these tips in mind and start building a feeding plan that works for you and your child starting today.