Feeding Therapy

Feeding Therapy services offered in
Palatine and Chicago, IL and Kensington, MD

Feeding Therapy

If your child has difficulty eating, the specialists at Express Yourself Pediatric Therapy, with locations  in Palatine and Chicago, Illinois and Kensington, Maryland, can help. Board-certified child language specialist and credentialed infant mental health specialist Melissa Grosvenor, PhD, MS CCC-SLP, I/ECMH-C, BCS-CL, and her team provide feeding therapy for children, teenagers, and young adults. Schedule an evaluation by phone or request one online today to get started.

What is feeding therapy?

Feeding therapy at Express Yourself Pediatric Therapy consists of physical, occupational, or speech therapies that aid in feeding, chewing, swallowing, or other components of effective eating and proper nutrition. 

The practice offers fun, play-based therapy that helps children develop normal, effective feeding behaviors.

Feeding therapy involves more than simply teaching a child to eat. The Express Yourself Pediatric Therapy team works closely with children and their families to determine the source of any difficulties and develop specific therapies that make eating easier and more enjoyable. 

Which challenges can feeding therapy address?

Candidates for feeding therapy at Express Yourself Pediatric Therapy include those who:

  • Have difficulty feeding themselves
  • Experience stress related to eating
  • Have poor nutritional habits because of eating challenges
  • Are picky eaters
  • Have difficulty chewing or swallowing foods
  • Don’t enjoy eating
  • Avoid certain foods or textures
  • Have problems transitioning from bottle feeding to solid foods
  • Gag or choke when trying to eat
  • Struggle to move food around in the mouth
  • Are irritable or fussy when eating
  • Frequently cough when eating
  • Vomit during or after meals
  • Rarely or never try new foods
  • Push food away during meals
  • Struggle to transition to oral feeding from tube feeding
  • Have negative mealtime behaviors
  • Refuse to eat
  • Have problems sucking during breastfeeding or bottle feeding
  • Eat for more than 30-40 minutes during meals

Mealtime can be an excellent time for bonding and enjoying fun experiences with family members and friends. Through feeding therapy, your child can be part of it.  

What happens during feeding therapy?

The Express Yourself Pediatric Therapy team completes a feeding evaluation to determine which type of feeding therapy is best for your child. 

A therapist works with them to develop the skills needed to make mealtime effective and enjoyable. Play time during feeding therapy creates a fun process. 

The skills learned during feeding therapy help children get better at:

  • Chewing
  • Swallowing
  • Trying new foods
  • Using a fork or spoon
  • Sipping from a cup
  • Socializing while eating
  • Having an enjoyable overall eating experience

The Express Yourself Pediatric Therapy experts encourage parents and caregivers to participate in feeding therapy sessions to ensure an effective outcome. Families can observe real-time progress and learn developmentally appropriate activities to complete with their children at home.

How long does therapy take?

Since there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to feeding therapy, the time it takes for a child to thrive depends on their individualized needs. The Express Yourself Pediatric Therapy team lets you know what to expect. Your child might see a therapist once or twice weekly (for 30-60 minutes) for several weeks, months, or even years.

Schedule a feeding therapy evaluation at Express Yourself Pediatric Therapy by phone or request an appointment online today.