Cutting food in tiny pieces...how tiny for how long? - Mothering Forums

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Old 05-21-2012, 01:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Just out of curiosity, do you still cut your toddlers food into tiny pieces or do you allow for more bite-sized pieces? 

 

DD is 17 months old and DH and I disagree on how small the food needs to be. He will re-cut food that I've already cut if he thinks it isn't small enough. I keep wondering if this is really necessary.

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Old 05-21-2012, 03:10 PM
 
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Hmm.  At 18 months, I still cut stuff pretty small.  Like, grapes into quarters.  And I peeled apples until 2 or later.  Meats got cut pretty tiny too, for chewability reasons.  There's also a sort of "danger valley" for our kids.  Some things are hard to cut into itty bitty bits, but tend to get crammed dangerously into mouths at their normal bite size.  (I'm thinking bread sticks...)  These we started to leave whole when they started to learn the "bite off a piece" concept.


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Old 05-21-2012, 03:16 PM
 
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I think this depends on how many teeth they have, how well they can grind food (as in do they have the motion down) and the texture of food more than their age, so it's one of those things that you have to feel out. For example, I cut pizza for my LO for a long time because she had 8 teeth and could not grind very well yet. I tried not cutting it, and she kept gagging and seemed to like it better when it was cut small. I don't know if this will help, but my dh and I have an agreement that we defer to which ever way is safer when we disagree.

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Old 05-21-2012, 05:40 PM
 
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We've never cut food into tiny pieces. We found "chip-shaped" worked best for our LO. I would cut things like grapes in half to reduce the choking risk but that was more about changing their shape than their size. Stone fruit I cut in half or quarters and remove the seed. I leave all edible skins on although they often don't eaten.

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Old 05-21-2012, 06:03 PM
 
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DS ate an entire pear (including the core) when he was 14 mo.  

I used to cut pizza smaller so that if he dropped a piece, he didn't drop all of the pizza.  

Other than that we started with french-fry-sized pieces of everything, BLW-style.

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Old 05-21-2012, 06:18 PM
 
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I tend to do smaller pieces for my 26 month old, who still only has 10 teeth (should be 12, but she knocked out the bottom middles in an accident).  She is not a good rotary chewer, and doesn't like to bite pieces off of things.  DP and I disagree about the size, but it's not so much about safety as just how well she's able to consume the food.  He tends to cut larger pieces and she almost always spits them out.  I think something about halfway between a halved and quartered grape tends to work best.
 

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Old 05-21-2012, 06:29 PM
 
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I tend to leave things in bigger chunks too and let the child take a the bite they need.  If I am cutting something, I make it smaller because otherwise they try to put the whole thing in their mouths.  When it's obviously too big for one bite, then they will take appropriate bites.


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Old 05-21-2012, 06:44 PM
 
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Yeah, I think it depends more on the kid than a set age.

There's s difference between choking hazard size (grapes, hotdogs) vs my child is unable to take e proper bite (breadsticks, pizza, sandwich).

My dd will often shovel a lot of bit size pieces into her mouth, when if I would have left the food whole, she would/could take small bites.

I do like to cut messy foods as she can't use a knife. So I cut and then she uses a fork.

It is hard to judge. Watching a friend's baby, I gave the young toddler an entire baby wafer, only later to see the mom break it into really tiny pieces. Maybe she was working on the pincer grasp, but he had no problem biting off the proper size piece.

So trial and error. When attempting a new food watch and see.

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Old 05-21-2012, 07:17 PM
 
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We did BLW, so we've never cut food small (save for whole nuts and grapes). We give it more in stick shape so he can have some to grab and some to munch on. If he takes too big a bite, he spits it out (after chipmunking it for a little bit) then breaks it smaller. I think it is just one of those things that you let your child expirement with and then decide based on that.


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Old 05-21-2012, 08:05 PM
 
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One of my kids never choked easily, and one did up till about 3, so for the one I didn't cut much up except obvious choke hazard stuff like grapes, and the other got about everything cut up because she would choke otherwise. I think this is a "know your kid' issue.
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