Monday, June 8, 2009

Starting Solid Foods

Newborns up to 4 months of age are fed on breastmilk and/or formula. They are ready for solids if they manifest the following:
  • drinks more than 35-40 ounces of formula a day
  • seem to be nursing all the time and does not seem to be satisfied
  • when propped up make sure that the baby's neck is stable and not very wobbly
  • make sure the baby does not have a lot of tongue-thrusting (tongue reflex that seems to push the food outwards)
  • they will be drooling a lot

Once they are ready and able you can start them with 1 tablespoon of rice cereal to 5 tbsp of breastmilk or formula. Make sure you try to sit them up so they do not choke. Give the cereal in a spoon if your baby does not seem to like it try again another time. Try to add less of the milk and more of the cereal until the consistency is thicker. Try a new food for 3-4 days before introducing a new one. Make sure your baby is not allergic to the food. Reactions result in diarrhea, vomiting or a hive like rash all over the body.

  • cereals(rice, barley and oats)
  • vegetables (yellow/orange veggies before green) the yellow vegetables is more easily digestible than the green
  • fruits
  • meats (not until 8-9 months of age)
  • give eggs around 1 year of age
  • stay away from any shellfish(shrimps and crabs) for possible allergic reactions
  • do not give baby anything that can choke(nuts, grapes,apple skins...)

Once solid foods has started you will notice that the consistency and odor of the stools will changed. If the food is not strained you will see bits and pieces of food in the stool. Feed the baby solid foods before giving their milk. you will notice that the amount of milk will markedly decrease.

Juice is not needed for infants less than 6 months of age. You can give up to 4 ounces of juice once a day during mealtimes for babies 6 months and older. Juice is not needed.

Introducing new foods should be an enjoyable process. Talk and interact with your child while feeding them.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Fun in the Sun

Summer is here and finally everyone wants to go outside, smell the breath of fresh air and swim in the cool waters of your swimming pool. It is very important to protect yourself from the intense heat of the sun. Here are a few reminders from the American Academy of Pediatrics.

First things first, since we live in Arizona and the temperatures really go up, up and up to 120F. We should not get outside. The less exposure to the sun the better for our skin. If you can not help it, sunglasses, hats and clothes are good to protect yourself. Avoid the intense heat of the sun from 10am in the morning to 4pm in the afternoon.

  • Infants less than 6 months should be protected from the sunlight. put them under an umbrella or under a shade. You can apply some sunscreen to small areas of their body such as the hands, face and feet.
  • Make sure to put on sunblock on children with sun exposure, hats and sunglasses are a must.
  • Get a sunblock which reads "broad-spectrum" this means it is good coverage for ultraviolet A and ultraviolet B with at least an SPF(sun protection factor) of 15.
  • Make sure to reapply the sunblock every hour, especially when they swim or they sweat a lot
  • Minimize sun exposure by swimming before 10am and after 4pm,
  • Cloudy days only reduce the UV rays by only 20%-40% of the time, kids still need to wear sunblock.

Start the kids with good habits and they will grow up to be adults with good habits. enjoy your summer and be safe!