Feeding Therapy at Kara Dodds & Associates

Picky Eaters Versus Problem Feeders

Children with feeding and swallowing problems have a wide variety of symptoms, and not all of these symptoms are presented in each child. Feeding deficits can be “Sensory” and/or “Developmentally-based”, requiring an Occupational and/or Speech Pathologist to diagnosis and treat the specific feeding needs of the child.  

Some of the more hallmark signatures of feeding difficulties in young children can be:

  • Refusing food or is considered a “picky eater” (e.g. limited repertoire of food choices)
  • Failure to thrive (e.g. weight gain / growth)
  • Irritability (e.g. fussy) during feeding times
  • Difficulty to accept or tolerate different textures of food (e.g., only pureed foods or crunchy cereals)
  • Long feeding times (e.g., more than 30 minutes)
  • Difficulty chewing, moving food around the mouth
  • Pocket food in the cheeks
  • Difficulty breast feeding
  • Coughing or gagging during meals
  • Frequent spitting up or vomiting
  • Inability to transition to baby food by 10 months of age
  • Inability to accept table food (e.g. solids) by 12 months
  • Has not weaned off baby food by 16 months
  • Inability to transition from breast milk / bottle to a cup by 16 months

If you have concerns regarding your child’s feeding development contact our center to schedule an evaluation to determine current abilities and needs. Based on the evaluation, or therapists will develop recommendations and a treatment plan (e.g. individual, group feeding, parent consultation) specific your child.

Our therapists use an eclectic and holistic approach to improving feeding skills including integrating methods of: “Talktools”, Susan Evan Morris (Pre Feeding Plan), and the SOS (Sequential-Oral-Sensory) Approach to feeding developed by Dr. Kay Toomey.

 Therapy plans target improved:

  • range of motion of the oral mechanism (e.g. lips, tongue, jaw)
  • improved chewing
  • increasing acceptance of different foods
  • improved sucking and/or drinking abilities
  • improving positive mealtimes experiences

Read our Rave Reviews

Before Kara Dodds, my son received speech services else where. The way speech was set up just didn't work for us (short 25 minute appointments once a week). Since switching to Kara Dodds, my son has made incredible progress.

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News, Media and Blogs

Strength and Power Training for Children with Poor Coordination!

By Veronica Glen, PT, DPT (http://www.thesandiegopediatricpt.com/2017/01/strength-and-power-training-for-kiddos.html)

When Physical Therapists see a clumsy or uncoordinated child, one of the first thoughts we think is “That kid can use some balance training!” or “They could benefit from functional activity practice!” What current evidence based research is finding is that strength and power training can be just as helpful if not MORE helpful than functional movement training!

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