At what age can a baby drink water?
The question may seem strange. It’s obvious that babies need water… from the day they are born. But up to 4 to 5 months, no need for pure water in his daily life: his needs are largely covered by all the liquid he receives with milk, whether it is maternal or from infant formula. “Except during an extreme heat wave or in the event of diarrhoea, the water is of no use for the baby, since he drinks already 700-900 ml of milk breast or bottle,” explains Dr. Laurence Plumey, nutritionist and author of Food ledger (Eyrolles, 2022).
On the other hand, only water can be offered to him from the food diversification, which begins between 4 and 6 months, if baby drinks less milk. “The child who drinks only 500 ml of milk will have to supplement your hydration. Water can then be made available to him between meals, in a bottle, the equivalent of 4 to 5 small glasses per day, but without adding syrup, of course”, specifies the nutritionist.
Can we use tap water for baby bottles?
But what is the right choice for making your baby’s bottles? What is the best water for your baby? Several solutions are possible.
Nursery nurses will probably tell you right from the maternity ward: tap water is completely suitable to baby bottles. “Tap water is no problem and this, even from the birth”, advances Marine Lhomme, childcare nurse, who distills a lot of perinatal advice via her website. “We are lucky to live in a country where the water is potable and regularly analyzed and checked. Might as well take advantage of it”, she continues, while however issuing a reservation on a region: “ Brittany is the only region where it is better to avoid tap water. The region has problems with nitrate levels in its water, I do not recommend it. “Anyway, it is quite possible to call your town hall to have access to the quality of the water of his municipality (Source 1). The nutritionist also insists on this point: “Tap water is certainly possible, but it is important to check its compositionwhile a mineral water is almost sterile, of a total health safety because resulting from the underground depths not accessible to surface pollution and naturally without nitrates. In addition, it is weakly mineralized when it is adapted to the needs of the infant. She is so perfect! »
To use tap water, you must follow certain rules:
- when you turn on the tap, let the water flow a few seconds before picking it up;
- only use cold water ; hot water can be loaded with micro-organisms and mineral salts;
- do not use no filter jug or water from a softener: the microbial load may be excessive;
- clean and descale your faucets regularly.
Finally, if you are staying in an old building (built before 1948), the water pipes may still be lead. It is therefore recommended to use bottled water.
Spring water, mineral water… Which bottled waters should be used for babies? Which to avoid?
The bottled mineral water have the advantage of presentinga constant composition, meeting quality criteria. But the only ones suitable for baby food wear a specific mention directly on the label: “Suitable for the preparation of infant food” or “suitable for the hydration of babies”. This statement proves its low mineral content.
Low mineral water suitable for infants
“It is important to turn to low mineral water, knowing that baby milk powders are already designed to meet infants’ needs in trace elements and minerals. It is then a question of choosing the purest water possible, without calcium and magnesiumand also nitrate free so as not to unbalance baby and tire his kidneys”, points out the nutritionist. More precisely, the dry residue at 180° must be less than 500 mg (even less than 50mg per liter). How to know? This mention is always written on the label, too. In this category, Evian, Volvic, Thonon Where Mount Roucous seem particularly appropriate.
To know : Spring waters often combine several springs and therefore have a less constant composition than mineral waters. The water crystallinefor example, includes 22 different sources, some of which are not suitable for infant feeding.
What to do with an open bottle?
Water does not resist well to light and heat, it is advisable not to use an open bottle for more than 24 hours. To avoid waste, think of liter bottles. And do not drink from the neck of the bottle dedicated to baby bottles.
Colic, constipation: what is the best water to give to baby?
Baby squirms, seems to push, soils his diaper a little… Perhaps he is constipated. First of all, better consult your pediatrician to ascertain the cause of his discomfort. If the examination shows that it is a functional constipation, water can indeed help relieve baby.
It is advisable to keep children who are constipated well hydrated.s and to offer them a sufficient supply of water, by offering water between meals to improve their transit. We will then still use water with a low mineral content (Evian, Volvic, Mont Roucous, etc.).
Can I give Hépar to my baby?
Among the bottled waters, Hepar water is well known to help people with constipation. But this water is also too rich in minerals for a baby (2513 mg/l) and risk of strain your kidneys. It is therefore not to be given freely to babies in the event of constipation as you would as an adult.
On the other hand, it is possible to use it sparingly to facilitate baby’s digestion: “In general, we recommend a quarter of a bottle with Hepar, and the rest with very weakly mineralized water. Or, only 1 bottle out of 4 of water per day in the form of Hépar, but no more. It is important to set the dose with your doctor and not to decide it yourself,” advises the nutritionist.