Before the arrival of J. I thought I would be one of those hip moms who would do baby lead weaning from the start. Skipping purees all together.
Nope. Turns out I’m not that bold. The fear of choking was too strong. Even though there hasn’t been any good studies that prove that BLW is more likely to cause choking (or at least that’s what my book said).
I think if you choose to go this route, either from the start or later on. It’s important to do some research to understand what type of texture and size would be the safest for your little one. I also highly recommend taking an infant CPR course. This will put you more at ease, and will better equip you in an event of a real emergency.
Speaking of CPR, I also urge you to get all your baby’s caregivers to take an infant CPR course. In event of choking, you only have precious seconds to help your baby. So calling 911 isn’t going to cut it. They need to know what to do if it happens. If they won’t take the training – don’t leave your kid with them.
Follow your LO’s cues. I also recommend that you follow your little one’s cues to see if they’re ready. If they’re gagging a lot, I personally would wait and try again in a few weeks. I took my own pace and did a combination of purees and soft foods that I was comfortable with.
Starting slow. When I’m introducing new textures and sizes. I’ll give J 1 piece and watch how he eats it. I try to avoid offering other items on his plate – just so he doesn’t shove more food in his mouth before figuring out how to eat what I gave him. To learn more about what are considered choking hazards you can view the list by CDC.
List of choking hazards according to CDC.
Do your research. I said this before, but I think it helps greatly to understand the sizes and texture that is appropriate to start with. I followed a couple of instagram pages, consulted other moms, and purchased a few books on BLW.
TL;DR – Before starting on baby led weaning:
- Make sure your baby can sit uptight
- Take an infant CPR course
- Do your research – learn about sizes, textures, what are commonly known to be choking hazards
- Know the difference between gagging and choking
- Follow your baby’s lead
- Always stay with your baby
That’s all I have to share for now! Remember even though your little one is getting better at chewing, I would still be careful with what you serve them. Even though they can chew it, you don’t want to risk them accidentally choking the one time.