Breast milk is the best drink for babies.
Alternatively, infant formula milk (and water) can be given. These are the only drinks that should be offered before 6 months.
Of course, for breastfed babies you cannot measure the fluid intake, but a well-hydrated baby no matter how they are fed, will have 6-8 wet nappies every day.
A baby who is not drinking enough will become dehydrated. Signs of dehydration include:
If your baby has any of these signs, encourage small, frequent drinks of breast milk, or if feeding with infant formula milk, use the formula milk or cooled boiled water. If the signs continue, contact your doctor, public health nurse or dietitian for further advice.
Did you know….?
Your baby doesn't need fruit juices. If you choose to give your baby juices, only give them small amounts of well-diluted, unsweetened fruit juice. Dilute 1 measure pure fruit juice to 8 to 10 measures cooled boiled water. Serve this in a beaker only at mealtimes and only from 1 year onwards.
Squash/cordial drinks are not recommended for babies. They have limited nutritional value and can reduce babies’ appetite for more nourishing foods and drinks. Also the acidic nature and sugar content of these drinks increase the risk of tooth decay. In addition to this, most types of squash, including the ‘no added sugar’ varieties, contain artificial sweeteners which are not recommended for babies.
|Created by the Paediatric Dietitians’ Interest Group (PDIG) of the Irish Nutrition and Dietetic Institute (INDI) November 2015. Review date: November 2018
© 2015 Irish Nutrition and Dietetics Institute, INDI. All rights reserved. May be reproduced in its entirety provided the source is acknowledged. This information is not meant to replace advice from your medical doctor or individual counselling withadietitian. It is intended for educational and informtional purposes only.