Have you seen people use a baby weaning mesh feeder?
It’s like a soft dummy, with the ‘teat’ made of netting. You add food to this soft pouch and your baby can suck the food out through the gaps.
Are they a good thing?
Frankly, we think they are a little odd. Whilst we’re not saying you shouldn’t use them, it seems counter intuitive teaching children to eat through a net.
The potential the drawbacks are:
- Texture – babies may get used to the texture of food through a net, and not take to food on it’s own as well. If you use a mesh feeder then don’t rely on it too often.
- Babies aren’t learning to pick up food with their hands, missing an opportunity for the pincer grip development
- When children bite off a piece of food and move it around their mouth they are learning to eat. A mesh feeder will not aid this process.
- They are messy to clean!
Why do people use a mesh feeder?
There are a few reasons people are choosing to use these new inventions:
- It can help babies hold slimy food that otherwise might prove tricky to hold (e.g. avocado, mango pieces)
- It can help parents who are anxious about choking transition their baby from purees to more solid food.
- The feeders can be like a toy and keep babies busy at their high chair whilst you clear the kitchen etc.
- Some parents add frozen food and use them as a way to help with teething or cool babies down in hot weather. Babies can gnaw on the cool frozen ice cubes (or use frozen breastmilk cubes) which would otherwise be a choking risk.
From what age can you use a mesh feeder?
What to put in a mesh feeder
You can put anything in, broccoli, sweet potato, pineapple, mango, strawberries.
On balance, it’s up to you, but this equipment certainly isn’t necessary. You can just give baby age appropriate foods.
Join one of our popular weaning classes in Bristol or request a 1:1 Baby Weaning Consultation with Anna, our Registered Nutritional Therapist.
Anna is a Nutritional Therapist working with babies and children in Bristol and online. Weaning Consultations, and 1:1 Children’s Health appointments available to support the whole family.