11 month old barely eating/gagging
My son will be a year old at the end of this month. We started him on cereal around 6 months and baby food not too long after. He did pretty well for a while, then it was like he kind of just got tired of the baby food. I no longer give him cereal because he became constipated (his ped is aware) but I try to incorporate oatmeal baby food into his diet. Now, for the past month or so, he seems to choke and/or gag on a lot of the food I give him and plain refuses most baby food. He will eat yogurt and puffs and that's about it. I give him what I'm eating sometimes if its really mushed up but he sometimes gags on it, as well. I'm concerned that once he's a year old and older that he won't be able to eat real food! I know he's getting what he needs from breast milk but I'm still worried that he will have issues with refusing food and choking.
Re: 11 month old barely eating/gagging
I can empathize because mine is 1 yr and pretty much had no interest in solids until about 6 wks ago, and I can also empathize with the fear about choking. But I think you might want to expand your offerings beyond the mushy stuff. I found that my little man really wanted nothing to do with the soft baby food -- he was much more willing to explore solids when I started giving him foods with texture AND things that he could hold onto and self-feed. Truthfully I think "baby food" probably gets boring for them, and they can stay interested if you engage all of their senses -- taste, touch, motor skills, etc.
I talked to my pediatrician about the gagging/choking thing at our 9 mo checkup. She said that as long as baby is secure in his high chair, and you can squish the food if you push with your thumb/forefinger (think cooked carrot, wedge of really ripe fruit), baby won't choke. She said choking is more common with toddlers who are eating on the run -- they are playing, walking, while chewing food, maybe trip or fall, inhale quickly out of surprise -- and that's how the food gets inhaled into the windpipe. This makes sense if you think about it -- choking happens by accidentally aspirating the food ... that won't happen if baby is sitting securely, focused on the activity of the food. And she said that yes, in the process of learning how to chew and push the food to the back of the throat and coordinate their muscles to swallow, they will gag ... but that's the learning process with food. I watch mine really carefully while he's eating and now I can definitely tell the difference between gagging vs choking. Yes, he gags on the food - but less and less the more he experiments with it. I also give him things that are either small finger foods (cheerios, slivered/shredded meat, etc) OR big enough to hold in his fist like a wedge, fry, or chip shape (like a soft ripe wedge of pear or peach, a fry-shape cooked veggie, etc) -- not in-between sizes that could be choking hazards. Common sense stuff :)
Anyway that's just my $0.02. I'm not an expert or anything, mine is still not really eating them -- but I just though I would offer those thoughts since I can relate to where you are :)