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Doctor insights on: When Can I Start Giving My Baby Water To Drink

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When can I start giving my baby water to drink?

When can I start giving my baby water to drink?

6 months: Younger babies normally do not drink water. They just drink breast milk or formula when they get thirsty. Water is a thinner liquid than milk, so babies sometimes have trouble drinking water (but they drink milk just fine). With older babies that are already on solid foods, they can try a bit of water sometimes during mealtimes. ...Read more

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Why does young babies water (for formula) have to be boiled first and they can't just drink straight from the tap?

Why does young babies water (for formula) have to be boiled first and they can't just drink straight from the tap?

Depends on source: In most municipalities with approved water supplies, this is not needed. When the water comes from untested well or surface systems, it may be tainted with germs or parasites, which could cause a deadly dysentery and dehydration in a vulnerable infant. ...Read more

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At what age can an infant start drinking water and how much? For example, if the child is sick, can you given them only pedialyte?

At what age can an infant start drinking water and how much? For example, if the child is sick, can you given them only pedialyte?

About 6 months: Young infants typically get all the hydration they need from breast milk and formula. While it will probably not hurt to give a teaspoon or so ocationally, this could reduce the caloric & nutrient intake of the baby and risk a condition known as water intoxication. As a rule, introduce tiny amounts of water when the infants begins eating solids, which is at about six months. Good luck! ...Read more

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How about gripe waters for reflux and gas issues for babies? How about mom drinking tea w/ chamomile, fennel , and ginger? What probiotics to use?

How about gripe waters for reflux and gas issues for babies?  How about mom drinking tea w/ chamomile, fennel , and ginger?  What probiotics to use?

Possibly helpful: As someone who practices integrative pediatrics, I do incorporate these remedies for colic/gas in babies. Gripe waters that contain small amounts of fennel and ginger are likely safe as are chamomile and fennel teas (for baby or mom - if baby is under 6m, don't give more than 1 oz 3x per day). Probiotics (bifidus, lactobacillus) have been shown to be safe and effective. ...Read more

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When can I start giving water to drink to a baby he is 3 months old now and he usually gets hickups and I use breast milk to help him from that?

When can I start giving water to drink to a baby  he is 3 months old now and he usually gets hickups and I use breast milk to help him from that?

not helpful: Infants have no need and derive no benefit from water supplements. Breast milk or formula is designed to provide for all of babies needs. Hiccoughs are driven by an electrical wave in the breathing muscle like a heartbeat and will fade when it decides to, supplements of milk or water have no direct benefit. ...Read more

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My mom keeps giving my child small amounts of rip it energy drinks, watered down. I don't want to cause an argument Bc of drink but can this b harmful?

My mom keeps giving my child small amounts of rip it energy drinks, watered down. I don't want to cause an argument Bc of drink but can this b harmful?

Yes it can be: "small amounts" to an adult are NOT small amounts to a child. Energy drinks are primarily caffeine, which can have effects on children's growth, and unknown effects on the rest of their health. Tell your mother to STOP, and if she won't, you have to decide on whether you can allow your child to be with her. A family member or therapist may be needed to mediate this family problem. ...Read more

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Is drinking any kind of juice bad for a child's teeth? I read that children should only be drinking milk and water, but our son likes apple juice as well. Should we stop giving him that entirely? .

Is drinking any kind of juice bad for a child's teeth? I read that children should only be drinking milk and water, but our son likes apple juice as well. Should we stop giving him that entirely?


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Austin, I : Austin, i am not in agreement with either of my respected colleagues. Plain and simple, prolonged repeated exposure to sugar water can be horrible for your kids teeth. Sugar water goes by the name of the obvious and not so obvious; soda, sports drinks and fruit juice. Oh wait, but maybe it's all natural 100% certified organic fruit juice. Then repeated prolonged exposure to this will still cause just as many cavities between your child's teeth. I'm going to be very clear, at no point did a juice box fall off the branch of a juice box tree. But wait again, if it is mixed 50/50 with water then bathing teeth in half as much sugar will still cause just as many cavities. I see more kids in my upper class well educated location with this issue day after day. Before i get juice-aholics emailing incesently, all juice is not bad. In fact, juice is not bad at all. It is just in the way we consume it that can cause devastating and rampant cavities. Siping sugar water out of a sippy cup, sports drinks on the bench at a three hour baseball game, repeatedly taking a gulp every 15 minutes while watching tv 4 hours after school everyday will cause rampant cavities between your child's teeth. Every time your child drinks anything with sugar it feeds the bacteria that we all have. This bacteria then produces acid which demineralizes the protective layer of our teeth called enamel. It takes about 15-20 minutes for our bodies saliva to naturally neutralize this acid and stop the progression of damage. But your child's repeated exposure to even low levels of sugar water starts that clock back at 15-20 more minutes till the damaging process stops. Thus, 3-4 hours of low level sugar water exposure every day causes a hugh amount of damage. The trick is to drink it all at once and then cleanse the mouth of the acid buildup. Sugar water with meals tends not to result in this damage. When we eat we produce extra saliva, neutralizing the acid. Plus, we only eat for a limited time. In addition, I have never seen a child get cavities by eating actual apples all day. The sugar is not nearly as concentrated and the fiber literally wipes the sugar away, plus the extra neutralizing saliva. In the end, fruit is good, fruit juice with limits is good. Hope this is helpful, michael i. Wollock, dmd, agd fellow dentistry at suburban square 610-649-0313. ...Read more

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