Your Supported Sitter's digestive system
- Prior to four months of age, a baby’s digestive system is not ready for food other than breastmilk or formula.
- Baby’s tummy is still small so he needs frequent feedings.
- The type of formula as well as any solid foods eaten will influence the look and frequency of his stools.
Your Supported Sitter may be ready for his first taste of solid food. Previously his digestive system was too immature to digest the proteins and carbohydrates in infant cereals and baby foods purees. At around four months, his digestive system may begin to produce enough of the enzymes and digestive juices needed to properly digest and absorb certain foods other than breastmilk and formula.
Whenever you introduce a new infant cereal or baby food purees, always wait 3 to 5 days before offering a new food. This allows time for you to check for any symptoms of food intolerances or allergies such as a rash, congestion, runny nose, chronic cough, diarrhea or vomiting. If you recognize a problem, stop feeding the new food and let your pediatrician know immediately.
What else affects digestion?
In most cases, breastmilk or formula (at standard dilution) provides enough fluid so that you don’t need to add more water into his diet at this time.
Your baby’s stomach is tiny so you can expect he will be hungry and want to be fed about every three to four hours. Yes, that’s about eight feedings in a 24-hour period.
What your baby is eating and drinking will influence the look and frequency of his stools. Breastfed babies tend to have soft unformed stools and rarely have hard, dry stools or constipation. If you’re formula feeding and your baby is experiencing hard stools or constipation, you might consider transitioning him to a formula with partially hydrolyzed protein clinically shown to promote soft stools. Talk to your baby’s pediatrician and see if a change in formula may help.
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