"There are several different options when it comes to weaning and it's important to choose the one that's right for you and your baby.
Everyone's experience is different. We asked one mom to share her reasons for choosing baby led weaning. "Weaning my first-born son was one of the most exciting and scary times of my life. We chose the baby led weaning method very early on and he took to it straight away. It's one of the best parenting decisions I've made and now he's a fully-fledged toddler and happy to eat anything and everything. My second born son is soon to turn six months old. We will be following the same method of weaning again. Are you still unsure whether to choose traditional or baby led weaning? Read on for five reasons why you could choose the baby led way.
You can both enjoy mealtimes together
Baby led weaning is all about you enjoying mealtimes as a family. No more cooking separately for baby and spoon feeding it while your food gets cold. I loved that I could rustle up an evening meal or a healthy breakfast for us all. I could put chunks of bread or pasta on my son's highchair while I enjoyed my food too. Eating together also teaches baby how to chew and eventually use utensils too.
The mess can be cleaned up
If fear of the mess that baby led weaning causes is putting you off, then don't let it. By purchasing a few simple items, you can combat the mess and make your life ten times easier. We swore by a washable cover-all bib, a high chair with a huge tray. And eating on tiled or laminate flooring which can be quickly cleaned up with a dustpan and brush between mealtimes. If you've got a dog, then even better!
You don't need to invest in unnecessary equipment
If you choose traditional weaning, it means purchasing blenders, steamers, pots and spoons. All completely unnecessary if you choose baby led weaning. Apart from the coverall bib, you don't need anything extra to baby led wean. Simply cut the food you're about to eat appropriately (eg finger sized pieces for fruit and veg) and off you go! doddl's ergonomic baby utensil set is great for babies from 6 months and makes it easy for them to use on their own. It took a few months of practice, but once he was 18 months old he was really adept with using a toddler knife and fork thanks to doddl toddler utensils being perfectly shaped for little hands.
Eating on the go is easier
When you need to go out and about, don't worry about packing jars and pouches and having to heat them up. Instead, you can simply take a few snacks such as veg sticks, fruit or rice cakes. Or even share a little bit of what you're eating if you are out in a restaurant.
It's great for baby's fine motor skills
When baby first starts weaning, it's so hit and miss to whether they can pick up the food and get it in their mouth. With bigger bits it's easier, but with small pieces like peas or blueberries, it can be slightly more challenging. Baby led feeding gives baby the chance to practice using their fine motor skills to pick up food and transfer to the mouth. We loved practicing with Cheerios, peas, sweetcorn and squished blueberries. Whatever method of weaning you decide to choose, this period of baby's life will be one of the most fun experiences you will ever have. The exploration of new tastes is an exciting time and I wish you the best of luck on your weaning journey."
Nicola who blogs at Mummy to Dex lives in West Lancashire, UK with her husband, three year old toddler Dexter and newborn baby Felix. Extremely passionate about baby led weaning, she mainly blogs about this topic, but also write about pregnancy, travel, days out and life as a Mom of two boys.