What to do with the problem of children eating?

In families where children have difficulty eating, a cycle of bullying can be seen. Usually, these children have many negative behaviors when eating, such as stubbornness, complaining, disobedience, playing with food and …



Problems eating children know

Some children are bad at eating, do not eat a lot of food, or do not chew on all foods that have a particular taste or are made from a particular food. Obsessive – compulsive disorder or poor eating habits, characterized by fear and anxiety about eating, are other problems for children not eating. It is estimated that 20 to 30 percent of children have eating problems. These problems are usually accompanied by other eating habits such as eating too slowly and not wanting to eat.


Psychologists have suggested four reasons for this problem in children:
1- The child associates food or eating with a disturbing experience such as suffocation, involuntary raising while eating, giving medicine to the child, etc.

2. The child’s parents inadvertently and unintentionally reinforce the child’s obsession with choosing food or not eating, for example; When a child refuses to eat a particular food, the parents remove it and prepare the child the food they want.

3- Some children do not have proper nutritional experiences due to certain diseases of a certain stage of their development, such as food-borne illness due to inflammation of the stomach and esophagus, small bowel syndrome, etc.

4- In families whose children have problems eating, a cycle of coercion is visible. Usually, these children have a lot of negative behaviors when eating, such as stubbornness, complaining, disobedience, playing with food, etc., and at the same time, parents show more negative behaviors when feeding the child, that is, more They give negative and unpleasant commands or make many negative statements when feeding the baby.


Solutions to children’s eating problems

Treatment of children not eating problems
Children with eating disorders usually eat enough to grow. Their problems are usually resolved without treatment; However, some of these children do not receive enough food and in some cases their physical, social and emotional development is endangered, in which case it is necessary to set a proper program for feeding the child.
Therefore, for faster progress in treatment, the cooperation of a nutritionistThe child and the child psychologist are necessary. But in more common conditions, the treatment is different than before.


The nature of the problem greatly affects the treatment. It is very important to pay attention to family factors, especially parents and the environment. Parents who seek help for their child’s eating disorders, in many cases, have emotional and marital problems, which in itself has a significant impact on the child’s problem, treatment alone is not effective and can even be said with certainty. The treatment is ineffective. Numerous clinical experiences have shown that solving the problem of parents can also solve the problem of the child not eating.


Change your usual eating routine:
Change your child’s usual eating routine to make him or her more inclined to eat. It is better for a person to eat with the child, but that person must be patient in the face of the child’s refusal to eat and never resort to playful language and sarcasm. In the interval between main meals, try to minimize the child’s access to food. You should probably skip snacks between main meals and give your baby only water. Although many parents do not like this method, if we are going to give light food to the child, the food must be given on time and in a very limited amount.


Use the Differential Attention Technique:
In this technique, you need to make the desired stimulant or positive booster depend on the occurrence of a proper eating behavior (for example, on the food that the child previously refused to eat). At the same time, ignore the child’s inappropriate responses (such as not eating), or turn away.

To do this, it is better to give the child a small amount of food that the child has not eaten before, if he eats, encourage him if he does not eat, do not tell him anything, just turn your face away from him for a few seconds. Then bring the food forward again. Repeat this several times (in order for the child to accept the food that he / she has previously refused to eat, it is necessary to provide food 10 times). Sometimes it may even be repeated several times for the child to accept the refusal.


Use other behavioral enhancers: 
1 – Eat your child’s favorite foods, depend on eating foods he does not like.
2 – After eating a junk food, he is allowed to do enjoyable things like playing with the PlayStation for a short time.
3 – After eating a junk food, the child can play with his favorite toy for a short time.
4 – Give the child a score for each unhealthy food that he eats, and finally, after the scores reach a certain level, exchange the scores with some activities.

See Also Misconceptions about having children

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