Why doesn’t my child want to eat?

Often, it is difficult to determine the reason why your child won’t eat. There are many
factors that could influence this. For example:

1) Many times, a child has learned that eating is a painful experience because of a medical condition. Once the medical condition is resolved, that child should be involved in feeding therapy to unlearn this.

2) Some children are born prematurely. Sucking is a reflexive behavior; if sucking does not occur within the first six days, then the reflex can lose strength.


What is the youngest age that you work with?

We work with babies as young as one month. At this age, it’s fairly simple to get things on track.


Does using a behavioral approach mean that my child is misbehaving?

No. A behavioral approach means that the eating process is broken down into individual components that can be measured, such as mouth openings and swallows. The frequency of each behavior is then altered through learning until the desired distribution exists.


How does a behavioral approach differ from speech therapy?

The focus of speech therapy is physiology, while a behavioral approach focuses on habit and learning.

Ultimately, eating is a behavior, and behavior changes through learning. A behavioral approach best addresses feeding issues if there are no physiological issues preventing the eating. If there are physiological issues present, a speech therapist or medical doctor would be the best professional to see.


How long should feeding therapy last?

It depends on the case. On average, feeding therapy should last 4–6 weeks for major transitions such as getting off the tube or happily eating 30 additional foods.


Do children outgrow feeding problems?

Many times, a child can get better over time without therapy. The factors for therapy consideration are: (1) how severe the problem is; and (2) is the problem affecting your child’s development or health?


Do you offer an inpatient program?

No, we only offer a day treatment program.