Does your child refuse to drink milk, taste peanut butter or touch a carrot? Are mealtimes a dreaded nightmare for your family? Are your child’s rigid preferences for food causing you concern about his or her health?
Using interventions based on the work of Dr. Kay Toomey SOS (Sequential-Oral Sensory) Feeding Solutions and Marsha Dunn Klein Mealtime Notions, LLC, occupational therapists at UNMC’s Munroe-Meyer Institute are here to help.
“Food School: A Therapeutic Feeding Group” for children who are three to five-years- old, medically stable and safe for oral feeding is available on a year-round basis. Food School consists of 12 sessions, once a week that last approximately 1 ½ hours. Fees vary.
Therapeutic feeding groups are most successful when the participants are thoughtfully matched. Our application/questionnaire/intake form will provide us with a brief overview of your child’s feeding history, preferences and your concerns / goals for your child’s eating behaviors. The information from the questionnaire will help us ensure your child’s eating skills and feeding problems are similar to other group members.
Parents / caregivers play an important role in our Food School sessions, as well. You will be able to observe the ‘meal’ portion of the group through a 1-way window. At least one occupational therapist will be observing and talking with caregivers throughout each session. Educational materials also will be provided at every session, explaining more about our process and serving as a basis for discussion among caregiver participants. Previous participants have enjoyed the opportunity to discuss their situations with other families experiencing similar feeding frustrations.
In addition to food school, our occupational therapists also provide outpatient therapy and support for other feeding and swallowing problems, including neuro-motor and/or sensory-based feeding challenges.