Feeding therapy targets two main areas:
- Food types in the child’s diet
- Using oral motor and fine motor skills to eat
We can help your child expand their diet through behavioral and sensory strategies. Children with oral motor difficulties may also need help with strengthening and/or coordination of the lips, tongue, and jaw.
Speech Language Pathologists and Occupational Therapists can provide feeding therapy to target diet expansion, oral motor skills, and fine motor skills related to feeding (such as using a fork). Your BCBA may also write feeding goals into your child's ABA treatment plan.
Here are some of the red flags for feeding difficulties:
- Are they a “picky” eater with a restricted diet?
- At least 10 vegetables/vegetables in their diet
- Less than 10 sources of protein
- Less than 10 grains or carbs
- Less than 20 total foods in diet
- Food falls out of their mouth
- Extended time between taking a bit and swallowing
- Slow or limited weight gain over time
- Issues with ongoing vomiting or reflux
- Coughing or gurgling after swallowing
- Uses hands to eat when other kids use utensils
- Avoids foods of specific textures
- Your child avoids meal times and eating
- Your child engages in barrier behaviors at meal times
- Cannot drink from an open cup
- Cannot drink from a straw