Baby’s First Spoons

When your baby starts on solid food, the spoon will become an important part of every meal. At first, you will want a spoon that works best for your hands, but when your baby is ready to try using a spoon on his own, he’ll need something a little different. Find the right spoon for both purposes with a few easy tips.

A Spoon for First Feedings

When choosing the right spoon to start feeding your baby solid baby food, there are a few things to keep in mind. Babies have very tender gums, and they can be especially sensitive if your baby is starting to cut teeth. A good first baby spoon will have a rubber coated tip to be gentle on baby’s gums.

Because you will be handling this spoon, you will need a long enough handle to make it easy to grasp and control. Baby spoons also have long handles to make it easier to reach the bottom of a baby food jar. These spoons are ok for your baby to hold onto and to get used to the idea of what a spoon is and how it works, but they won’t work very well for baby actually feed himself. This requires something a little different.

The Right Spoon for Self-feeding

When your baby is ready to try self-feeding with a spoon, you will need to get him something that works better for his little hands. This time, look for a thicker handle with a rubber grip that baby can wrap his fingers around. He won’t hold a spoon quite the way you do at first, but will hold it in his fist in a tight grip.

A self feeding spoon will have a larger tip that can hold a little more food. Look for something more concave that will allow some food to stay on the spoon even when your baby tips it. Bringing the spoon steadily to his mouth without tipping it will take a long time and plenty of practice.

When to Give Baby a Spoon

You can give your baby a spoon to hold right from her first feeding. She won’t do much with it, but over time she will start to imitate your motions, dipping the spoon into the food and bringing it to her mouth. When you see her start to do this, she is probably ready to try in earnest. It will be a messy process, but your baby will be learning necessary skills for life, so hang in there and let her figure it out!

Although your baby already has the general idea down, show her how to scoop food onto the spoon and bring it to her mouth. Hold your hand over hers on the spoon and direct the motions a few times. Then, let her give it a shot. Thick foods like oatmeal are a great choice for these early feedings as they will stick to the spoon a little better and not fall off quite as easily. It will be a while before she can take on soup, but she is working on the steady hands and careful motions required to get that food all the way to her mouth!

Learning to use a spoon is an important step towards your baby’s independence. Encourage her to keep trying, and don’t get upset over the mess; she isn’t doing it on purpose, and it’s all part of the process. Before you know it, she will be a spoon expert!

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