Eating is a multi-sensory experience. Each mouthful brings the possibility of many flavors, textures, and temperatures. A child with Sensory issues can be super hypersensitive, hyposensitive, or both. Routine and the eating of certain foods can make eating difficult too. They might want chicken nuggets every night at the same time on the same plate and they don't want any variation. Problem eating stems from a real physical and neurological response. Forcing is not going to work, but they can learn to eat at the table with the family. Here are some helpful hints.
*Have meals and snacks at predictable times.
A written or picture schedule can be helpful.
*Eating and drinking done at the table during
snacks and meals
*Offer water to drink between meals
* NO GRAZING. If children are allowed to eat
througout the day, they will not be able to
regulate sensations of hunger and satiation.
They might also snack on preffered foods and
fill up instesad of healthier foods at meal time.
* Rotate foods
* Meal time should be a non-stressful time.
Stress decreases appetite and children will
avoid the meals if it is stressful
*Dont use dessert as a reward. Using bad food
to get them to eat good food is not a good
*It is ok to leave food
*If needed, post behavior rules (written or
* Have them help in the planning, prep
cooking, and serving
* Let them choose the plates and
*Redefine Success. They are showing sucess when they try new foods, touch, or poke them. Praise any participation in a food-related experience.
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