IT IS NOT TOO LATE TO MAKE A CHANGE WITH A PICKY EATER
Our team of Registered Dietitians & Psychotherapists are here to help you or your child break their eating habits and develop new ones!
Many times it is not just about the food, but there is some mental, emotional, psychological problem that is affecting the desire to eat certain foods or entire food groups. Our approach is to make the patient feel as comfortable as possible as we discuss, counsel, and expose the fear of foods.
We never want our patients to feel forced to do something they do not feel comfortable doing, however, our goal is to try and break these habits by using the proper counseling. Our counseling skills allow our team to understand the fears, concerns and limitations without making the patient feel pressures to eat/try something they do not want to. We often use Exposure Therapy, which is when we expose the patient to the foods and counsel while being in the presence of it. We have found virtual sessions to be extremely helpful with helping the patient feel comfortable in their own home while challenging their habits.
With children that are picky eaters, we often make food FUN! We create fun activities in our sessions that involve the food, which helps take the pressure off of the food and makes it more about the enjoyment of the session.
We also know this can be an issue for an entire family. We also help guide and counsel the family members that may be involved to make it a less stressful environment for everybody. Accordingly, if this is your child, we counsel the parents on the best ways to deal with their family's particular situation.
The goal is to help decrease the level of stress and anxiety around the foods and make it feel easy and as natural as possible.
We are also skilled in working with children/adolescents/adults that are delayed or have developmental or physical disabilities. It is common for individuals on the autism spectrum to have problems with eating. This makes it hard to get them to eat a healthy range of foods. We are skilled in working with this population and helping increase the variety of foods in a calming and enjoyable way.
We want to reassure you that we work around you and your family's eating habits/preferences. If there are certain food guidelines you have, we will respect those! We also know that it is normal to simply dislike foods. We will never make you eat foods you truly dislike, but we want to be able to help you better understand which foods you truly dislike or think you may dislike/or are just scared to try.
It is an environment where individuals feel extremely comfortable and are able to express freely what is affecting their eating behaviors.
When would I need to seek help for my child being a picky eater?
Every child is different and there is some normalcy about children having food preferences. But, knowing when it is becoming an issue is extremely important. You should consider whether your child's picky eating seems to be getting worse as he/she is getting older instead of better. As children age, picky eating tends to start improving, however, if it isn't that is when it is important to seek help/guidance.
Some signs you should seek help for your picky eater: you are concerned about your child's growth (weight and height), your children refuses major food groups (fruits, vegetables, dairy, protein), demonstrates a very emotional response/behavioral issues/ temper tantrums to new foods, shows social anxiety with eating, is highly aware of food "imperfections" (like flecks of black peppers or change in food brands), expressing OCD behaviors with foods, having trouble swallowing, recurrent vomiting, severe sensory aversions (not just to taste but to texture, consistency, color, temperature),