For Baby

Learning to swallow: the Extrusion Reflex

Learning to swallow: the Extrusion Reflex

Your baby is born with a sucking reflex, and when it comes to feeding this is what they’ll use for their first few months of life.

The other reflex your baby has is an extrusion reflex. This is when they'll push any food placed on their tongue out the front of their mouth. 

This is completely normal, and doesn't mean they don't like their food - it just means they're not capable of swallowing it yet. Somewhere between four and six months the extrusion reflex should disappear, and it's from this point that you can look at giving your baby new types of food

Comment 3

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Gemma's Comment

My baby is nearly 4 months old how can I tell when his extrusion reflex has disappeared? I understand its probably to early now.

Reply from The ForBaby Team

Hi Gemma, The ‘extrusion reflex’ is when a baby thrusts their tongue out when food/spoon approaches, this means baby isn’t ready for solids. Wait until this reflex has disappeared and instead, baby opens their mouth to take food from a spoon. For more advice please call our Careline experts on 0800 55 66 66.

Anoushka's Comment

My baby is 3+1/2 months and a couple of people have suggested I give him Baby Cereal mixed with formula to help him sleep. He is fully BF, I don't mind him waking, I know it's what little babies do, this just doesn't make any sense to me.
Would you ever recommend this?

Reply from The ForBaby Team

Anoushka – You’re right little babies need feeding often and many don’t sleep through the night for quite some time. We would not recommend solids before 4 months old, current guidelines are for introducing solids at around six months. If you introduced solids at this stage he may become uncomfortable and therefore more unsettled. It might be useful to give us a call on our toll free number 0800 55 66 66 to talk it through.

Lisa's Comment

i just start giving my 3 half month baby little rice cereal and fruit as he love it as only little as teaspoon a day or second day.

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