One of the first things that parents look forward to as a sign that their baby is getting bigger is when they can start feeding baby cereal. Though there are some parents that skip it, almost all give cereal as the first food a baby has other than formula or breast milk. Cereal is simple, but there are things that a new mother and dad have to know about starting it with their baby.

Some myths drive parents to make mistakes, but usually everything comes out okay. Talk with your paediatrician about what is best, but use common sense as well. There is one thing that parents have done up until now was to start feeding baby cereal in the bottle. They cut the nipple a bit to allow thicker cereal-laden milk to go through. This was something many did very early, long before they should have. First, baby should never have cereal through a nipple, especially one that has large bore altered nipples.

Secondly, though believed that it helps baby sleep through the night, there is no truth to that myth. The average age to start feeding baby cereal is four to six months, with six months being the very best time. There are a few reasons for this. One reason is that you need spoon in feeding cereals, no exceptions, and babies under four months are not ready for that until they can sit up with some assistance or on their own. The other is that their digestive systems are not ready for the cereals; therefore, baby could get excessive gas and have a lot of unnecessary discomfort.

Some informed parents knew when to start with rice cereal mixed with formula or breast milk when starting with feeding baby cereal. The next after that is single grain oatmeal. Either is fine to start with, or you can skip cereal altogether. There are studies that suggest that rice cereal is not good for young babies, and that oatmeal is the better first choice. Some babies simply will not eat it.

If you are going to start your baby on fruits and vegetables soon after the time when you would be feeding baby cereal, you may find that mixing a teaspoon of cereal in with a serving of fruit is more appealing to your baby and they will eat it more readily. Feeding baby cereal is a big step and a fun one too. Just do not start too soon in ways that may cause your baby to choke. They will eat when they are ready, and they will sleep through the night when it is right.

If they are still waking up, they still need those calories at night. Do not rush them. Babies grow up so fast anyway, so enjoy the simple days. The milestones in feeding therapy will be upon you soon enough. Baby gets enough of everything through breast milk and formula, so waiting to just the right moment is the best choice for your baby and for your peace of mind.

Author's Bio: 

Andrea McManus is a professional, licensed speech and feeding therapist that has been successfully providing Long Island feeding therapy for over 10 years. She has helped hundreds of kids from babies and toddlers to teens achieve success in better eating habits and doing so as an ongoing solution. Connect with her through the website,