Today was Faith’s oral examination with a speech and oral therapist. We are trying to understand why Faith has no interest in eating baby food. The pediatrician wants to make sure there are no physical issues with her swallowing. I don’t believe there is. She swallows milk fine, and water, and pureed foods. However, it seems she has trouble swallowing textured foods. Once textured food gets towards the back of her mouth, she tries to push it out with her tongue, or she gags. The same thing happens when we give her a cracker or a cookie. If she bites off a piece, she doesn’t like the texture of it, and spits it out. She refuses to chew it up, and swallow it.
So today we had Faith sit in the cutest little kitchen filled with bright colors, and she tried out several different foods. As predicted, she hardly even opened her mouth. First of all, she realized she was at the doctor’s office so she was quiet, big-eyed, and looked a bit nervous. When we put her in the highchair she started getting scared, and whined a little. I put a couple of her toys on her tray and she calmed down. We tried applesauce, chocolate pudding, a cheese stick, a Gerber snack cracker, and some pasta in tomato sauce. She never willingly opened her mouth for any food except once. I knew she was hungry because I made sure to delay nursing her so she would hopefully eat at the doctor’s office. She didn’t :(
We have another appointment with an oral therapist on Monday. I asked the doctor if it would be helpful if I recorded her feedings at home where she is more comfortable. She said, “Yes! That would be extremely helpful!” This way, the doctors can observe how she eats, what she eats, the quantity of food she eats, and the duration of time it takes her to eat. Also, they can better observe how her mouth works as she chews the food, and swallows. I think Faith will be able to give the doctors more information at home where she’s more comfortable, than in a kitchen, and in a highchair she’s never been in before. So I will begin creating a video log of all of her feedings.
I’m still not too worried. She is getting all the nutrients she needs through my breast milk, and I’ve heard people say, “Food for fun until they’re one.” However, I agree with the doctors that she should have more experience trying out a variety of foods by now. She should be wanting to open her mouth and try different foods, at least for fun.
I’ve researched several articles and message boards, and heard moms say, “None of my breastfed babies were interested in solids until they were at least 9 months and didn’t get solids quite regularly until they were 12+ months.” So I don’t necessarily believe Faith is behind developmentally. I won’t truly be worried until she’s 1 year old, and if she is still behaving this way. Another mom said, “None of my kids had solids before 12 months – just not interested. They’re all healthy young women now who will eat anything. They all turned into foodies, in fact!”
We went to Walmart today to get a few more foods for her to try out. I am posting her first feeding since we’ve been home from the pedicatrician. If any moms out there, or other pediatricians have any helpful advice to give, please do!