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Pediatrics/Re: Infant Mealtime

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Dear Doctor,

My daughter is 10.5 months weighs 7.9 kg (BW 1.48 Kgs, born in 34 weeks). Since I am working, she is kept in the day care. She prefers solid food and her does like milk so her intake is very less upto 75 – 100 ml per day. Her eating schedule generally is -
a) morning 9 am – little milk – 30 to 45 ml with a small elaichi banana mashed in milk
b) midmorning around – 11 am -  idle/dosa with vegetable dal/rasam or suji halwa/upma
c) noon – 2 / 2.30 pm – veg. khichdi / veg. dal & curd rice / chapatti with dal / ragi cereal / mix veg. upma
d) evening 4.30 / 5 pm – apple / avocado / banana or any fruit milkshake  
e) night around 8 – 8.30 pm - veg. dal & curd rice or wheat dalia / chapatti with veg. dal or curds
At the daycare two ladies are looking after her and I was told that she takes around 15-20 mins to eat the food, since one is feeding her and other lady is playing and talking to her. At home, for dinner or at weekends when she is at home, she takes around 30 to 45 mins sometimes 1 hr to eat the food. She doesn’t refuse to eat but wants to crawl/ explore/ stand / play with toys while eating which consumes some time as I have to go behind her. Moreover, she has the habit of passing motion while eating food particularly dinner which also consumes some time for cleaning her. I can understand if she has done with the food as she turns her head away or refuses to open her mouth.
I would like to know whether it is ok for her to take so much time to eat at home considering other habits as mentioned or should I adopt any other strategy? I was suggested by family members to hold her hands and body firmly and feed her, so she is stationery and completes eating fast. I am not happy with this strategy as the baby is also uncomfortable?
What kind of mealtime discipline should be introduced at this age or how to make it more pleasant?  We regularly show her how to feed herself but she does not take anything into her mouth by herself.

thanking you in advance

Answer
here are answers

whether it is ok for her to take so much time to eat at home considering other habits as mentioned or should I adopt any other strategy?
== this is absolutely fine and no change needed, as her weight gain is better compared to her birth weight and hence appropriate though looks smaller.start adding variety in mashed feeds.



I was suggested by family members to hold her hands and body firmly and feed her, so she is stationery and completes eating fast. I am not happy with this strategy as the baby is also uncomfortable?
=== baby's main need at this age is curiosity (as depicted in picture at www.infantfeeeding.blogspot.com) so forceful feeding should be discouraged. rather .. feeding for her should be an entertainment or game.. start chewing with her.. she will finish faster.
satisfy curiosity first and then babies will take more feeds. A bypass option is to feed the child while child is in walker or swing enjoying the moments and movements.

What kind of mealtime discipline should be introduced at this age or how to make it more pleasant?
== make the baby sit with family for meals... donot feed baby first(before mother's meal)... always let the baby eat whatever she eats with you and then remaining you feed her afterwards.

We regularly show her how to feed herself but she does not take anything into her mouth by herself.
-- start finger feeds.noodles, wafers,pappads in crushed or mashed form too.

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