Eating and Drinking

If your child has any of the following issues, a feeding assessment might be needed.

Picky Eating
  • Frequent gagging, choking or vomiting during meals
  • Difficulty with self-feeding
  • Refusal to try new foods
  • Picky eater – only eating certain foods or a food range of less than 20 foods
  • Difficult to feed and mealtimes are often more than 30 minutes
  • Requires entertainment (e.g. iPad, TV) to eat

Picky Eating or Something More?

All children go through a phase of picky eating and being choosy with their food. This often happens when they are around 18 months old when their growth rate slows down and their appetite reduces. They are also learning about autonomy and control and the power of "no"!

However there are some children who do not outgrow this period and can become “problem feeders”. These children often eat less than 20 different foods, refuse to try new foods, and may go through periods of eating only 1 food and then not eating it again.

Feeding skills are vital to ensure that the child is receiving adequate nutrition for his or her development. Eating and drinking are also key tasks that we perform daily in every setting (e.g. home, school) and can affect how we interact with others and our environment.

If your child shows signs of being a problem feeder, it is important that you seek help from your paediatrician or consult one of our feeding therapists.

Fussy Eating and Children with Autism

Picky Eating

Children with Autism can have increased difficulties with eating including, food refusal, eating a limited range of foods, selective eating by food groups, texture, colour etc.

Carers often report difficult behaviours during mealtimes including not wanting to sit at the table, inspecting the food, positioning foods and not eating them.

Diet and eating problems in children are very distressing for many parents. It is important to recognise that children with Autism have developmental differences and different preferences when it comes to social skills, routines, sensory sensitivities, likes and dislikes. Strategies such as ignoring behaviour, threats/punishments, force feeding, will usually not solve the feeding issues that your child faces.

Do contact Dynamics for an assessment so you can understand better how to manage your child’s fussy eating.