Fifteen months into her child’s life, a toddler’s mom left her son’s well-child visit “stressed out” and “frustrated.”
Barron was born at 29 weeks and weighed a total of two pounds. He spent 52 days in the neonatal intensive care unit with oxygen support and an NF feeding tube. As Barron grew, he continued to face trouble with feeding. Chewing was a struggle, and either lost or gagged on any food he would try to eat. Even soft solids gave him a problem, and had an aversion to purees and certain textures.
At his 15-month check-up, Barron was underweight and his growth in feeding was minimal. His mother, Laura, did not know what to do. Barron was doing fine in lots of developmental areas, but food was a constant struggle. She had tried to introduce table foods to his diet, but Barron was “uninterested” and would spit them out.
After voicing her concerns to her early intervention specialist, Laura got a recommendation to meet with a speech-language pathologist, which specializes in eating alongside verbal skills. She contacted The Warren Center and was put into communication with Elle. On her first visit, Elle explained that eating is a fine motor skill and is closely connected with walking.
As Elle and Barron continued their weekly visits and Barron’s fine motor skills increased, so did his feeding. They started with small steps: mixing some solid food into purees, and gradually built up Barron’s eating abilities by adding more solids into the mix. They set goals together that Laura would work on with Barron when Elle wasn’t there to help his fine motor and feeding skills. With the combination of Elle’s outstanding work and Laura’s dedication towards Barron’s growth, he is now eating favorites such as grilled cheese, meatballs, and peanut butter protein bars. He can feed himself, and even gets excited for meal time!
Barron is currently working on skills such as using utensils, pacing, and widening his variety of foods, but The Warren Center does not doubt him. Barron is a lively, kind child and has made massive progress since his 15-month check-up. With Elle’s help, alongside The Warren Center, there is no doubt that Barron will soon be eating whatever his heart desires!
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