Blowing raspberries is a developmental milestone that helps prepare your baby for future language and fine motor skill development. Most babies blow their first raspberry between the ages of 6 and 8 months, and will likely enjoy the new skill so much that they won't stop -- even when they're eating. This can make for sticky, messy mealtimes. With a few gentle reminders and a brief withholding of another bite, you may be able to prevent baby from blowing raspberries with a mouth full of food.
Gently Reprimand Your Baby
Firm reprimands are an appropriate way to discipline a baby who is demonstrating undesirable behavior, according to Sandy Bailey, a certified family life educator writing for BabyCenter. When your little one blows a food-filled raspberry, tell her "no" in a firm, but gentle, voice. Babies can tune in to tone of voice, so your little one will most likely understand that you don't like what she's doing.
Stop the Meal
Babies want instant gratification, so withholding another bite of food from a baby who is too busy blowing raspberries to eat properly is a simple tactic that can have big rewards. When your baby blows a raspberry, splattering food all over the place, remind her that it's not allowed with a gentle reprimand, but also pull the spoon away and don't offer her another bite for another minute or two. If she's feeding herself, take the spoon away from her for a few minutes. This delays gratification and sends the message that another bite won't be offered as long as your baby is blowing raspberries.
Distract, Distract, Distract
When it comes to babies who can't understand reasoning about discipline, distraction can work wonders. When your baby is displaying unwanted behavior, distracting her often works, according to KidsHealth. If your baby won't stop blowing raspberries while she's eating, distract her with a song or short board book to take her attention away from raspberry blowing. Once you've sung a song or read a book, try the food again -- she just might take several bites without blowing them all over the place.
Offer Different Food
If all else fails, offer your baby foods that don't make a mess when she blows a raspberry. Babies tend to adore repetition, especially if it gets a reaction from other members of the family, which means that convincing her to eat without blowing her food all over might be a losing battle. Offering more solid-type foods, such as banana slices or avocado chunks instead of pureed baby foods, will make it less likely that she'll be able to blow food-laced spit, or at least reduce the mess.