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My toddler won't chew his food

(7 Posts)
Kaja Tue 02-Jun-09 22:27:52

Hello - I'm brand new to Mumsnet, but joined specifically to get some advice on this...

My 21 month-old is turning into a REALLY fussy eater - he will only eat soft things that he can 'chew' with his tongue (not his teeth) and just won't try new foods. We're pretty much stuck on food appropriate for an 8 month old!

Does anyone have any advice?

mumblechum Tue 02-Jun-09 23:09:03

What is his language like? I only ask in case there's some underlying problem (very unlikely, but it may be worth checking out if his speech isn't clear.

If his speech is ok, then maybe the health visitor could advise?

Bumping for you anyway

Dalrymps Tue 02-Jun-09 23:28:56

I have a similar problem with my 19 month old ds. He has always been fussy since day one, bf, ff and now food. We only got him to eat lumpy jars about 2 months ago. He will eat some finger foods but tiny amounts. He will eat smooth puddings,cake, mashed potato. We have started giving him more 'proper meals' and less jars on the advice of his dietician (he has weight gain prob) and he just nibbles tiny bits or shoves it in, chews it (with his only 4 teeth) then spits it out again. He probably swallows one mouthful in 10 with the help of a drink unless he's having an unusually good day.

He is not really interested in food full stop. Tonight I took his tea away and didn't offer him anything else, I can't do this all the time though, he has to have the calories! He had only eaten a few peas (most pea skins spat back out) and one mouthful of mashed potato.

We can give him jars which he accepts mostly but he has to play with toys/a book to distract him whilst we feed him or we get nowhere.

He's due to see a speech and language therapist soon so maybe she can help. He saw one a few months ago and she said she thought he was just more sensitive to textures/tastes than other babies.

I don't know really but wanted to share with you so you don't feel alone. We have tried everything, at the end of our tether at the moment!

Dalrymps Tue 02-Jun-09 23:33:06

Oh I just thought of something I saw on the house of tiny tearaways. They had a baby who didn't know how to chew so they got crisps (like skips or quavers) and sat with him and chewed them whilst looking in a mirror then encouraged the baby to. Lots of praise everytime the baby chewed etc. Might help? Maybe ask for a referal to a slt through your hv too?

jabberwocky Tue 02-Jun-09 23:33:11

DS1 was like this. It was maddening. As it turns out he does have sensory issues so I guess the texture really bothered him. One thing we did was a silly little thing where I said "Chew, Chew, Swallow, Swallow - it the fooood train" Okay, so I probably looked and sounded like a loon but it did get him going blush

also, has he had his first dental checkup? Any possibility he might have a sore tooth? Unlikely I know but it just occurred to me.

Kaja Wed 03-Jun-09 09:37:07

Thanks so much for your ideas - I saw the speech reference on other websites, but his speech (as far as I can tell) seems to be coming on pretty well at the moment (although I'll keep an eye on it). I have to confess that distraction with 'In the Night Garden' seems to be the trick that works best at the moment (I know, I know - terrible parenting!! blush )- I like the idea about using the mirror and also the 'chew chew' train! Will give them a go (when alone...!)

Dalrymps Wed 03-Jun-09 20:18:00

Lol we started off with The Simpsons' as a good distraction then moved on to toys then books, more portable! Don't worry about it, the psychologist I saw about ds said as he gets more used to feeding himself he'll be too busy plaing with the food to need distraction. Good luck! smile

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