San Diego: (619) 692-0622
Santee: (619) 749-7059

Request Appointment

We are here to help during COVID-19


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Pediatric Speech, Occupational & Physical Therapy Centers
in San Diego
Kara Dodds & Associates

San Diego: (619) 692-0622

Santee: (619) 749-7059

We are here to help during COVID-19


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

Funding / Insurance Options

We accept a variety of plans to cover your child’s therapy needs. We bill and work with insurances directly taking the hassle out of it for families. We accept:

  • Tricare (Health Net Federal Services)
  • Kaiser
  • Easter Seals of Southern California
  • San Diego Regional Center (in home or center based)
  • PPO plans including: Anthem Blue Cross, UHC, Blue Shield, Coventry, and more.

We will take the lead on determining coverage and finding the best options available with your plan. Call today at 619-692-0622 for more information.

Ready for a fun therapy environment, that truly cares about your child and your family?

Come experience the difference!

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Mission Valley Center

Kara Dodds & Associates - San Diego
7840 Mission Center Court, Ste. 200
San Diego CA 92108

(619) 692-0622

Monday through Friday: 7:45am6:30pm
Saturday: By Appointment Only

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Santee Location

Kara Dodds & Associates - Santee
8840 N. Magnolia Ave Ste 220
Santee CA 92071

(619) 749-7059

Monday through Friday: 7:45am6:30pm
Saturday: By Appointment Only

Get Directions