Parents’ Guide to Letting Baby Play with Food



Playing with food actually helps your baby! It helps with baby’s sensory development. Is baby’s face messy? You may be tempted to wipe their face right away, but having food on their face lets them experience the food.

Pediatric speech-language pathologist, Heidi Sloan, MA, CCC_SLP, C/NDT says, “The biggest thing at their young age is to relax and have fun with the food. So it’s not so important that they are eating, chewing, and swallowing the food that you present. (*Best for 6 month olds when first introducing solid foods) But they’re having positive interactions with the food. That might mean that they touch the food and mush the food. It’s just being able to gradually introduce the idea of jumping into chewing and swallowing food.”

Time to get messy with your food!

Visit Pathways.org for more information about children’s development. All materials including videos are provided at no cost; no fees or charges may be associated with any of the Pathways.org materials without prior written approval.

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