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Mealtimes are a source of strife and tension in most households where babies and toddlers are present. This should not be the case. Mealtimes should be enjoyable and fun for both the caregiver and the child.
As a parent, you need to ensure that your baby learns good eating habits from the start. It is never too late to start putting your child on the right track where food and mealtimes are concerned. But it is best if good eating habits are taught as early as 6 months or when your baby starts eating solid food.
It is seen that most parents force the baby to eat when the baby shows some resistance. This will inculcate bad eating habits in the baby. This will make your child want to resist more and he will also become more wary of new food items.
You need to make sure that these kinds of power struggles do not happen. All the people who are responsible of feeding and caring for the child must sit together and talk about the problem.
This is to make sure that all of you have the same rules when it comes to feeding your baby. Given below are a few problems that most parents face when feeding their children. You can also find some possible solutions here. Read on to know more.
Child Is Not Eating Enough
Take a good look at the portions you serve. Ask yourself if what you serve is too much for the baby. Many a times, what the parent thinks is 'enough' - is a lot more. If your child is truly not eating enough, you need to find out what the reason behind it is. Check if your toddler is snacking too much.
Try eliminating the snacks and see if the mealtimes go more productive. Your baby will never starve himself. Some other reasons might be illnesses and growth spurts. If it is summer, your child might not want to eat at noon due to the heat. Offer him foods that are cooling. This might help him eat without any fuss.
The Child Willingly Eats A Few Bites And Then Resists Any Food Offered
This is a sign that your child has had enough food. Your child will eat the amount of food that is needed for the body. Once he resists, you must stop trying to force him. Children who are forced into eating food are more likely to develop eating disorders in the future.
It is not practical to expect a toddler to finish everything on his plate. You should not try to make your baby eat food of a quantity larger than the circumference of his wrist. So, keep your eyes open for cues which tell you that your baby is full.
The Child Is Distracted During The Mealtimes
Sometimes, distractions serve well when trying to feed a baby; but at other times, a distracted baby can be difficult to be fed. Toddlers tend to run around, as they want to explore their surroundings. Babies who have just discovered crawling and walking are more likely to be distracted.
When this happens, parents and caregivers tend to run after them and feed them. But this is a wrong practice. Babies need to learn to sit down to eat.
Feed them a little and if they start to run around, let them go. Offer them food again when they are really hungry. This way, they will learn to eat at a go. They will also learn that the dining table is the place to eat and food will not be served if they run around.