Behaviors at Mealtimes

Parent-child interactions can also influence feedings. Ineffective communication, lack of bonding, the absence of social interaction or poor interactive skills, family dysfunction, and decreased environmental stimuli can exacerbate feeding difficulties or lead to frustration and anxiety with subsequent food refusal or parental withdrawal. Aversion to oral feeds can also be an outcome of medical complications, such as esophagitis and GER, or lack of feeding experience at critical milestones secondary to prolonged tube feedings. Behavioral treatment should only be undertaken after thorough medical, nutritional, and neurodevelopmental assessments are completed.

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