The point of finger foods

We are going down the traditional line of weaning, with pur????es and it's going really well. We've been doing it about 4 weeks now and I'm gradually introducing lumps, which he is taking fine. I've also started to offer some finger foods but I don't understand the point of these.

Are you supposed to give the food to your baby so he can feed himself?
Is it so that your baby gets used to biting/chewing?
Should finger foods be part of his daily diet?

While my LO will happily suck on a melon stick when I put it into his mouth, he won't put it in himself. I'm therefore wondering if there's any point, will I just make him lazy if I continue to feed him in this way? Sorry for being a bit dumb, appreciate any advice, thanks xx

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  • Hi chick, you're right in saying finger foods help to develop biting and chewing, as obviously they are quite "solid". As well as this they aid hand-eye co-ordination and this will in turn help when they are older and begin to spoon/fork feed themselves.

    As well as aiding development in this way, they give LO's the idea that food, comes in different forms, so although they're filling up and getting the nutrition from the purees, they're also familiar with food in it's natural form.

    My advice would be to offer finger foods at some point every day, be it at a set snack time, or a little something ie carrot batton along side his puree or what have you. If he's not interested don't force it upon him, but encourage him to hold food and put it to his mouth. Often they won't actually bite/chew/ingest much but just playing with the food is good for development.

    xxx

    [Modified by: linziMc on June 25, 2010 09:44 AM]

  • agree with everything linzi said, plus the different textures and colours of finger foods aids their sensory and awareness development, also the sucking/biting etc helps to develop the mscles in their mouth aiding speech development.

    hth xx
  • Thanks so much for your replies. The thing is, he really enjoys the finger foods I hold for him but he's not interested in putting it there himself. Should I continue as I am or should I give them to him and wait for him to start feeding them himself? Obviously I'll continue spoon feeding anyway, so he won't actually need it as food xx
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