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When Should I Start Giving Water to My Baby?
When Should I Start Giving Water to My Baby?

Introducing Water to Your Baby

Updated over a week ago

Introducing water to your baby is a step that comes with its own set of guidelines and best practices. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, here's what you need to know about starting your baby on water:

Age Recommendation:

  • Babies can begin to have small amounts of water at around 6 months of age, provided they are showing healthy and steady growth. This is also typically the time when solids are introduced, making it an appropriate period to introduce water in minimal quantities.

How to Introduce Water:

  • Using an Open Cup: To aid in developing their drinking skills, offer small sips of water from an open cup. This method helps your baby learn how to manage and drink water effectively.

  • Adjusting to Water: Initially, babies may find water challenging to drink due to its thin consistency compared to breastmilk or formula. It's normal for there to be some coughing as they learn to adjust.

Quantity of Water:

  • Before the age of 12 months, only a few sips of water a day are necessary. Your baby receives adequate hydration from breastmilk or formula, and additional water is not required in large amounts during this time.

Monitoring Hydration:

  • A good indicator of sufficient hydration is the presence of 4-6 very wet diapers a day. If you have concerns about your baby's hydration levels or notice a decrease in wet diapers, it's important to consult with your pediatrician for guidance.

Introducing water to your baby at the right time and in the right way supports their overall development and introduces them to a healthy habit of staying hydrated. Remember, the primary source of nutrition and hydration for infants under one year should still be breastmilk or formula.

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