toddler and "solid" food.(4 Posts)
Our 2and a half year old came to live with us 7 months ago.
We were told that he ate all kinds of food but it's became apparent he only had "soft" foods. So he'd have baby food and processed food egsausages , ,fish fingers. He can eat biscuits etc.
We've realised he can't eat chicken, beef bacon etc. He chews and chews. He cries and says it makes him sad. I've tried giving him drinks with them which sometimes works.
He's a funny devil about having things mixed but I am going to try adding gravy or mayonnaise.
We've never weaned a child so I don't really know how to do this! Any advice would be much appreciated.
I think the important thing is not to make mealtimes unhappy or stressful if you possibly can avoid. So if trying to chew meat is making him cry and get upset, then I wouldn't push it at the moment.
The usual advice is to serve them food you know they can eat, with one thing that they won't or find difficult to eat. Don't draw any attention to the food, let them eat it or not and clear away when they are done. That takes all the anxiety out of the meal, and lets them try things at their own pace.
The meat issue seems to me like he may have had no exposure to the texture of meat when he was little, and so doesn't know how to chew it.
It will take a good long while to get the hang of it. The good thing is that it isn't essential to eat meat for good nutrition - you could look at vegetarian recipes for children for some ideas. I would then perhaps serve a small amount of meat alongside but make no mention of it and let him do whatever he wants with it (barring chucking it around!).
It might be possible to get a referral to a dietician who might be able to give you some expert advice. Maybe speak to your GP and see what they suggest?
Thank you ever so much for replying.I felt So sorry for him when he was crying but he wouldn't spit it out. Finally convinced him to. At the moment I'm finally dicing it (almost like mince) and mixing it with mayonnaise on a sandwich and he loves it. I'm going to try making it a bit chunkier over time.
I worry that when I put things on a plate for him and he just eats what he wants, then asks for a snack. What do I do? Give him the snack? I also thought of going back to toddler meals (the ones up to 3 years old) or is that a backwards step?
Gosh this is hard! I might talk to my health visitor too.
He's asked for fish fingers tonight thank you again.
I would plan the meals and snacks that you're going to offer and then stick to them. Plan in things that he will eat with things that are a bit more challenging, but make sure there's enough of what he can eat so that he won't go hungry. I think you will need to go gently and slowly with this as essentially it's not his fault - he's not being badly behaved he just doesn't know what to do with this kind of food! I guess the aim is to increase his exposure to different types of food and support him whilst he learns and experiments with what to do with it.
I wouldn't offer the toddler ready meals if you can avoid them, as he's going to need to get used to real food in the long term.
I have read on here before that sometimes a speech and language therapist can be helpful as at this age it's all connected together with eating and the ability to coordinate his mouth. Maybe the HV or GP can advise. I do think that you and he deserve some specialist input given his rocky start to life. Good luck with it all
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