How do I know if my baby is ready for solid food? Solids

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Baby getting fed applesauce
iStock/Ivanko_Brnjakovic
Moms and doctors say to wait for signs of readiness from your baby before starting solids. Check out the signs an expert recommends looking out for -- plus the ways moms just knew their babies were ready for their first real meal.

Age Matters

"Babies will often signal an interest in food visually by facial gestures and salivation. Though they usually may show an interest earlier, it is still advised to wait until 6 months." -- Gary M. Kramer, MD, pediatric specialist, Coral Gables, FL

She Can Pick Up Food

"I believe that if baby is truly ready for solids, she should be able to pick up small soft chunks with her fingers and self-feed."

Developmental Cues

"We started when our daughter was sitting unsupported, using a pincer-type grasp to try putting food in her mouth, and losing the tongue thrust reflex. She was about 6 to 7 months by that point."

Wait Until He Shows Interest

"We waited until he showed an interest in what we were eating. The doctor said they're usually ready when they try to reach for your plate or watch you eat."

Get the Doctor's Sign-Off

"My son was small for his age, so our pediatrician recommended we start him on solids to help him put on a bit of weight. He also showed all the other readiness signs!"

The advice on CafeMom aims to educate, inform, and provide a range of solutions to the issues moms care about. It is not a substitute for consultation with a medical professional or treatment for a specific condition. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem without consulting a qualified professional. Please contact your health-care provider with questions and concerns.