Author Topic: BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!  (Read 263 times)

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Offline BlueandPinkMum

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BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!
« on: March 08, 2018, 09:58:37 am »
I've been trying to wean my 6.5month old DD since she was 5.5months as seemed ready for food.

I weaned my now 2 year old DS at 5.5 months via the puree - mash - lumps route and it went really well, it's a good eater now. So tried that again and my DD is just showing no interest in the spoon (other than to chew). She will pick up those soluable baby crackers/crisps and munch away.

However my fear of choking is overwhelming me and can't get past it to give her finger foods which is such a shame as sure she'd do better with finger foods. I gave her a piece of avocado (rolled in baby rice for easier gripping) and she sucked it back - she gagged and it came back out but my nerves were shot and I threw it away. https://smiley.babywhispererforums.com/Smileys/classic/sad.gif

Can anyone give me any advise as to how to proceed - ease my fears or a way on how to start?

She has eaten purees but if's been force-fed and I don't feel that's any way to teach her to eat. On a positive note she has liked EVERYTHING!

Online becj86

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Re: BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2018, 11:44:07 am »
BLW is great for LOs who won't touch a puree and you're right, its not nice to start her relationship with food as force feeding.

I think the thing to know about choking is that its silent. If she's gagging and making noise, her body is protecting her from choking - doing what its designed to do. Giving her things she can grab in her hand (rather than pincer grip which is tricky for LO at this age) and pretty big so she can bite or suck pieces off it rather than getting the whole lot in her mouth at once may help your anxiety. Knowing that you can cut foods that are round (eg. grapes) into smaller pieces so if they do (and most likely they won't) get into her airway, they don't fully block it. You can do baked vegetables cut into chip-shaped pieces, fruits and salad veges cut into wedges/strips... there are heaps of way to start off with BLW. With avocado, I used to cut it into wedges the length of the avocado so DS had something to hold onto and couldn't fit the whole thing in his mouth.

For your peace of mind, you could do a kiddie first aid course so you know how to tell what wrong and what to do if she is choking vs. gagging vs. has something in her airway but not fully blocking it.

Offline eva026

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Re: BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2018, 19:25:57 pm »
How about a mesh feeder for the start? When you gain confidence that she can do it, you can progresss to finger foods.





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Re: BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2018, 22:31:34 pm »
How about a mesh feeder for the start?
Forgot about those! Great idea :)

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Re: BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2018, 10:18:51 am »
Have you seen this FAQ, it's helpful to know about the difference between gagging and choking:
https://babywhispererforums.com/index.php?topic=241398.0

As pp said gagging is the body's way of protecting itself.  A baby's gag reflex is more sensitive and further forward than an adults.
Babies also have a great way to bring back up foods which they have swallowed which are too big - so it didn't block the airway but it was too big and they can look like they are vomiting or gagging but the food was swallowed. The whole chunk is then brought back up and out (and my DS would just pick it back up and have another go at it).

I agree on the paediatric first aid course giving greater confidence, find out if there is one in your area you can join. they are usually just one day or a couple of sessions and cover the basics including what to do in a choke situation.

A few things that helped me feel more confident about finger foods and the choke risk:
- a paedi first aid course, I only managed to attend half of it but it covered what to do if choking occurs so I knew what action to take
- one day I saw a button had fallen off an item of clothing, it was on the floor right by DS and he could have picked that up and choked and I might not even have been aware if I was distracted by something else (tidying up or whatever) whereas when I gave him food he had my full attention and was never left unattended.  Food was safer than buttons.
- one day when he'd been on solids a little while there was a horrific story of a baby choking and dying when being fed mushed food at nursery. Choking can happen with puree, mush and lumps just as easily. The key to any weaning is vigilance.
- one day my DS was happily munching on a big piece of kiwi and I just licked my finger which had a piece of kiwi the size of a grain of rice on it. Unbelievably it semi-blocked my airway and I was instantly gasping for air trying to cough the tiny bit of fruit out, eyes streaming, one of those moments when I really feared I might not be okay and I was alone with DS.  Scary. Tiny bits of food which are harder to manipulate in the mouth can be just as dangerous or even more dangerous than big chunks which are more easily manipulated and pushed out by the tongue.

It can be scary.  I avoided any small round foods for quite some time, no cherry tomatoes or grapes even if cut in half (at the paedi first aid course I met parents of a child who had choked on half a grape), never cut sausages or carrots into rounds always batons. I avoided foods which I felt could be claggy and stick to the roof of the mouth such as regular bread (I gave toasted crusts which are harder and less claggy). I offered everything in big wedges, fingers or batons, never cut up into small pieces.
And always make sure LO is sitting fully upright, if anything more leaning forward over the tray/table and never leaning backwards.  Not all high chairs make this position easy so you can check on this, and some very small babies need a folded towel behind them if the chair is big but the LO can otherwise sit up well.

There are lots of benefits to introducing finger foods, eating lots isn't one of them at this point.


Offline BlueandPinkMum

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Re: BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2018, 12:51:35 pm »
Thank you for all your replies, they were all incredibly helpful. I reached breaking point at the start of this week and alongside my post here also contacted a friend who gave me a book on BLW. Likewise she said about a baby first aid course and I have now booked onto one at my local Children's Centre.

creations - your experiences you listed were really interesting. Thank you for sharing. What I find amazing is I've heard a few times now about choking is just as common (if not more so) with mushy food.

I gave my DD Weetabix this morning but this time I gave HER the spoon and she was eating it (to a degree), I would have been happy for her to dig into the bowl and just have a play but she likes to chew on the spoon. Did notice she didn't stick it in as far as I had been when spoon feeding her. It was the confidence boost I needed to see that she WILL eat if given the reins.

Lunch soon and going to attempt some steamed carrot & broccoli, so fingers crossed I hold my nerve!

Offline eva026

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Re: BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2018, 14:34:05 pm »
Good luck ! She’ll do great.





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Re: BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!
« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2018, 14:39:49 pm »
Chewing on the spoon could be a sign of teething, she might like the hardness on her gums.
I used a fork far more than a spoon (fork at about 6.5 - 7 months) and would pre-load it then offer it to DS to take hold of, later I pre-loaded and put it down and he'd pick it up.  The food stays on a fork more easily and when they are really young it's hard to control a spoon as it requires so many different movements in the wrist etc so as to not let all the food drop off.  Mostly mine ate with his fingers but the fork helped with slippery foods.

Hopefully in a short time you can start to really enjoy the process. It was one of the most enjoyable baby experiences for me.

Hope lunch went well :)


Offline BlueandPinkMum

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Re: BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2018, 21:33:54 pm »
Oh - good call on the fork instead of a spoon.

Well - **UPDATE** - My DD is LOVING food! My week has done a complete U-turn! My DD tried a few pieces of carrot, avocado and broccoli yesterday.
Today at dinner time she was so excited to be sat in her highchair and could not stop eating/playing, when all the food was gummed to death (or dare I say it eaten as some was being swallowed...will know it tomorrow's nappy!https://smiley.babywhispererforums.com/Smileys/classic/grin.gif ) or thrown on the floor she was searching for more. I'm stunned over how enthusiastic she is and also how calm I've been.

So so pleased - thank you everyone for all your help x

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Re: BLW - Am intrigued but petrified of the choking hazard!
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2018, 08:38:07 am »
Lovely update :)