Baby Led Weaning and Down syndrome – why we chose to do it, and how we made it work.
I’m going to kick this off with a disclaimer (what fun!): I am not a health professional, and this is not medical advice. I am a mum, and a bit of a science nerd. Where there are things to learn, alternatives to the mainstream and multiple options available – I like to hunt out information and remain open minded until I am satisfied that I know enough about all the options to make an informed decision. I have created this post with the intention of helping other parents make an informed decision about introducing solids to their child with Down syndrome.
So what is this “Baby-Led-Weaning”? What does this all mean?
Baby Led Weaning (BLW) is a method of introducing solids and has nothing to do with weaning an infant off milk. It involves skipping spoon fed purees and mush and going straight to putting whole family foods in front of your baby. There is no spoon feeding and the babies feed themselves. Initially this means sticks of whole foods like veges and fruits, and very quickly moves to baby eating everything the rest of the family eats (with a few exceptions). BLW first teaches the child to chew solid food, with swallowing being a natural progression on from this. In comparison, traditional weaning with purees first teaches the child to swallow non-milk foods, with chewing being introduced slowly and gradually over time.