266 chapter 12: Caring for your baby
When the baby is old enough to feed himself, he will probably make a lot of
mess at first. You may need to ask a family member, friend or neighbor to let you
know where the food has been spilled so you can clean it
up. Try to be patient. As the baby gets older and more sure of
himself, he will spill less and less food
If you have limited upper body strength and coordination
You may be able to feed your baby if you sit to the side of the
baby. This way you will not have to reach forward so much to
feed him. But if you cannot feed the baby yourself, you can sit
as close to him as possible and talk to him while someone else
gives him food. This will help him think of you as one of the
people who gives him food when he is hungry.
When a baby is 1 year and older
When your baby is 1 year and older, he can eat the same foods as adults, but he
should continue to breastfeed or drink milk whenever possible.
Every day, try to give the child plenty of the main food that the
people in your community eat, together with ‘helper’ foods that give
added high energy, proteins, vitamins, iron, and minerals, so that he
will grow up strong and healthy.
To make sure the child gets enough to eat, serve him in his own
dish, and let him take as long as he needs to eat his meal.
Comforting the baby
For a baby to feel safe and close with its mother, it is important for the mother to
comfort the baby when the baby is unhappy. If your baby starts to cry, and you
cannot get to her quickly, someone else can bring her to you. Then your baby can
see your face and hear your voice saying comforting words—even if you cannot pick
up or hold the baby yourself.
If you have no use of your arms or cannot hold your baby
Here are two ways you can comfort your baby:
Someone can hold the baby close
to you so the baby can hear your
voice and recognize your smell as
Or someone can sit behind you
and hold the baby in front of you so
you can comfort him with your voice.
A Health Handbook for Women with Disabilities 2007