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Top Infant feeding MYTHS!

Updated: Oct 24, 2020

We are going to go through 5 different myths of introducing solids and feeding an infant in the next few posts. Let's start with one of our favorites because of how often it's cited and because of how off base it is.

MYTH ONE: “Wait until the tongue thrust reflex is gone before starting solids.”


Not entirely sure where this little bit of advice comes from, but we've seen and heard it all over the place. On a quick Google search of "feeding recommendations" most of the main parenting sites mention this as a recommendation. None have a citation, mention research, or clinical reasoning to support this. It's even suggested on the AAP's Bright Futures website.

Just as Delaney & Arvedson (2008) found: “oral skill development as texture changes are made through the second half of the first year of life is an under studied phenomenon" we are also not able to find anything in the literature to consistently indicate when the tongue thrust reflex integrates, and whether it's integration is essential for transitioning to solids.

Due to a lack of scientific knowledge, we delve into the literature regarding motor learning and critical periods of feeding development.

What we know: the tongue thrust reflex is PROTECTIVE.

If baby takes something into the mouth that he/she can't handle, the reflex is triggered and the baby's tongue protrudes (or sticks out) which pushes whatever is in the mouth, back out.