Children need to eat a variety of healthy foods to help their bodies grow big and strong, but sometimes this can be difficult. If your child is a picky eater, our expert feeding therapists are here to help. Keep reading to find out what picky eating is, why it should be addressed, and how it can be improved with pediatric feeding therapy.
What Is Picky Eating?
Many parents think that children who are excessively picky about their food will simply get over it as they grow up. But most of the time, picky eating is actually a sensory processing challenge. They are not being picky out of malice or bad manners—there is some sensory quality of the food that is too much for them to comfortably process, so they refuse to eat it.
Common Signs of Picky Eating
Your child may be a picky eater if they:
- Refuse to try new foods
- Get angry or fight with you about food
- Have a short list of foods they will eat
- Get anxious or upset at mealtimes
- Don’t enjoy eating at restaurants
- Don’t want any foods from a certain food group
- Are very particular about how their food is prepared
- Won’t eat their favorite foods if they are the wrong temperature, brand, etc.
How Picky Eating Can Impact a Child’s Growth
Picky eating can impact a child’s physical development if they don’t get enough of the vital nutrients their growing bodies need. This can stunt their growth, cause health problems, and even impact their energy levels and ability to focus in school. And because sharing food is an important part of many cultures, holidays, and family events, children who are picky eaters tend to avoid social gatherings and miss out on these traditions. These are some of the reasons why early intervention is so important for your child’s overall development and happiness.
How Can Feeding Therapy Address My Child’s Picky Eating Habits?
Our pediatric feeding therapists are trained and experienced in every aspect of feeding. We use proven therapeutic exercises, techniques, and activities to help children build their sensory processing skills for successful feeding and increased nutritional intake. We can also give you tips and activities you can do at home with your child to help them continue working on increasing the number of foods they will eat between therapy sessions. With our one-on-one treatment and your support, we can work together to help your child develop a healthy relationship with food.
Benefits of Pediatric Feeding Therapy for Picky Eaters
If your child is a picky eater, feeding therapy can help them achieve fantastic benefits such as:
- Better behavior at mealtimes
- Increased willingness to try new foods
- More confidence in social situations involving food
- Improved nutritional intake
- Less anxiety about food
- Increased overall health and wellbeing
Schedule Your Child’s Evaluation
Pediatric Therapy Partners has clinics in Bossier and Shreveport, LA, to meet your family’s needs. All you have to do is call us at (318) 746-1199 or fill out the contact form below and our Intake Coordinator will help you schedule your child’s speech therapy evaluation.