Feeding Therapy

Let's get them eating right!

At a Glance

If you suspect that your child is having difficulty eating, contact your pediatrician right away. Your pediatrician will examine your child and address any medical reasons for the feeding difficulties, including the presence of reflux or metabolic disorders as well as make the referral for feeding therapy.

Addressing feeding problems is a necessity for preventing or eliminating nutritional concerns, growth concerns including failure to thrive, unsafe swallowing which may lead to aspiration pneumonia and future poor eating habits/attitudes.

Feeding therapy helps infants and children with a wide array of feeding difficulties which may include one or more of the following:

Oral Motor Concerns

Difficulty with sucking, chewing, and moving food or liquid around the mouth. Other concerns include, loosing food out of the front of mouth, overstuffing the mouth, and residue within the cheeks.

Texture Concerns

Difficulty transitioning to solid, table, or mixed consistency foods. Concerns include, gagging, choking, food refusal, and a self-limiting diet.

Aspiration Concerns

Some consistencies are not considered safe to eat due to risk of food entering the lungs (aspiration). Continual assessment and upgrading of diets are needed to determine a safe diet and treatment options. Therapy can also address transitioning off tube feedings.

How We Help

How are feeding and swallowing disorders diagnosed?

Our speech-language pathologists (SLPs) who specialize in treating children with feeding and swallowing disorders can evaluate your child and will:

  • ask questions about your child’s medical history, development, and symptoms
  • look at the strength and movement of the muscles involved in swallowing
  • observe feeding to see your child’ s posture, behavior, and oral movements during eating and drinking