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Eating solids but refusing fluids
help me
mercurykitty wrote in parenting101
My son will be 8 months old on the 21st. He's been eating baby food purees since he was 6 months old and, as of last Saturday, has been following a breakfast-lunch-dinner schedule (8/8:30am - noon - 7:30/8pm) with his meals. He has bottles of formula in between and usually averages about 20oz of formula a day. He flat out refuses water or juice in a bottle and won't even attempt a sippy cup. For him it's formula in a bottle or nothing at all.

Today he WILL NOT take a bottle. Daddy fed him breakfast before dropping him off at the baby sitter this morning. Baby sitter tried to give him a bottle at 10:30am but he would not take it and opted to nap until almost noon instead. He ate his lunch at noon and took 3oz of formula at 2:30pm. I picked him up at 3pm and he was not fussy nor was he acting hungry so I didn't push the issue until 5pm when I tried to give him a bottle. He threw a fit. My MiL came over to watch him so I could go grocery shopping and he would not take a bottle for her either. He was getting a bit fussy so she gave him dinner at 7pm. He was still acting hungry after dinner but again refused the bottle. I mixed 1.25oz of formula with 1 tablespoon of rice cereal and 0.5oz of fruit baby food (he refuses to eat cereal 'plain') and he inhaled it (via spoon, of course). My MiL then proceeded to get him to take 2oz of apple juice via spoon before he decided he was full.

He's had three meals and I know there's a percentage of water in each, but he's still not had anything close to his normal fluid intake (only 4.25oz so far!). Should I worry? Is there another way to 'sneak' some more fluid into that's not via a bottle or a sippy cup? How long should I let this go on before I call the doctor?

ETA: He's been a bit fussy and chompy the last few evenings so we suspect that his second set of teeth may be coming in. He wasn't nearly this bad about eating when his bottom teeth came in, but formula was his only source of nutrition at the time so I guess he didn't have a choice.
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I bet he's teething and it hurts to suck.

Yep this. Try giving him a wet/frozen cloth to "chew" on. He'll get water in him that way, and it'll help him feel better. As long as he's having wet diapers, don't worry about the lack of fluids.

Top teeth were way worse than bottom teeth. They took longer, they grew in fits and spurts, and they made my placid kiddo into a fuss bucket. Massaging her gums helped, as did frozen stuff (we put frozen berries in a mesh feeder). My kid also likes drinking from a regular cup (with help from her parents, of course) so maybe give him sips of formula or juice from a regular cup?

Yep, top middle were by far the worst for my son. Even his molars and canines weren't as bad as top middle.

Good to know! We're not at molar stage yet and I was worried on the basis of how awful those teeth were that we were in for a ride with molars.

Ooooh no way for us....my DD's molars were absolute friggin' nightmare. She woke up multiple times a night for two weeks straight from those damn molars, speaking of which I am sure she's working on the 2 year ones now. At least that will be it after these buggers come in.

Will he take any kind of fluid (water, juice, formula, milk) from a straw cup? What about thin smoothies or drinkable yogurt/kefir?

You can thin down the purees a bit to get a little extra fluid in them. Be careful to avoid constipating foods - including the rice cereal - as those require more water than other foods to keep the BMs soft and not painful.

My son's about a month older than yours, and we've definitely been dealing with the teething causing him to refuse things, too. Definitely try out a straw (regular straw or straw cup -- the latter usually has a little flow-regulator in it, so one may work better than the other), and maybe try making 'popsicles' out of apple juice or something he usually likes. I don't know if 'popsicles' out of formula would work at all, but it may be worth thinking about; we're BFing, and I make milksicles, which seem to work really well. :)

And, of course, baby tylenol might help him some, too, if it gets to that point. :)

Unrelated: Is that a Sailor Mercury icon? That was my first thought seeing it, but I don't recognise the dress or pose off-hand (though something made me think of the first season in the Rainbow Crystals arc, when she's on that 'date' with the psychic boy) and so now I'm wondering if I am just a way-too-obsessed fan who recognises art styles that much, or if I'm just way off-base.

My daughter went through this around that age. It probably was teething but she also weened herself from the bottle around that time and I think it was all kind of related. Try some new sippy cups an see how he does. Will he take any liquids by regular cups or spoons? Also, popsicles and frozen berries are AMAZING in those mesh feeders for teething (and sickness...honestly, there aren't many ailments that can't be cured or at least helped by a popsicle -- and you can make your own!).

FWIW (and I'm not a doctor and don't have any special scientific information) my daughter pretty much stopped drinking formula or anything milk related from about 9 months to a year. I would spoon feed her purees mixed with formula out of desperation but she almost always saw through it. Eventually (and after MANY doctors visits) we gave in and started beefing up the solids (I paid especially close to the nutrition) and phasing out formula completely. She did end up being okay with soy milk in the end. She is almost three now and perfectly happy and healthy.

YOu could also try giving him some water from a spoon or a straw (that trick where you put the straw int he water, cover the open end with your finger, lift up the straw and the water will stay in it until you remove your finger).

Have you tried a straw cup? My son wouldn't drink from a traditional sippy, but was great with a straw.

I'd guess your suspicion he is teething is probably true. My daughter has done this a few times shortly before her teeth begin to cut through when her gums are very swollen....that of which she is starting again as she is working on her final teeth...her two year molars. The first five or six teeth our daughter cut were easy peasy....then the rest. She goes on what I call a hunger strike, where she gets super ass picky and refuses to eat pretty much anything except for fruit, cheese and cheerios. She also majorly cuts back on her liquid intake. Once it was so bad I was having to try to feed her milk through a syringe because she wasn't drinking much and her diapers were quite dry. It was to the point where I was calling the pediatrician late at night after a very frustrating day...they suggested trying to give her baby tylenol and listed the correct doseage for her weight. It worked like magic. So when she is working on teeth, if I don't keep her medicated, her liquid intake and food intake drops off, but once the pain meds kick in, she is back to her cherry milk guzzling self. Now since she is older, she can use baby ibuprophen which lasts longer than tylenol, so we use that. But at 8 mos we were using baby tylenol.

If I remember correctly, I also took her to the pediatrician, just in case to make sure there wasn't something else going on like strep throat or something of that nature.

As for the stubborness on liquids other than milk/formula DD is the same way, she rarely likes water. What I have to do is mix her milk with half water so she will actually drink some fluids other than pure milk, because if I didn't she would literally be getting about 50 oz of milk a day. DD doesn't like juice either.

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