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My child won't eat after "near choking" incident
rsjc1062 posted:
It has been over 3 weeks since my 7 year old daughter had a "near choking" incident on a pretzel. She was able to cough it up but it scared her to death and she will hardly eat anything for fear she will choke again. I know this is a normal reaction but my question is "how long is too long?" She has lost several pounds and I have taken her to her pediatrician and they do not believe there is anything physical that would stop her from being able to swallow food. I have tried to not make a big deal out of it and I make sure she eats at the table with the rest of us. She will occasionally eat small amounts of soft chicken but prefers mashed potatoes, cottage cheese and yogurt. That is really about all I can get in her and per her doctor, have been supplementing her diet with Pediasure. She has always been a picky eater and she is small to begin with and she has been acting out more than normal which I attribute to hunger. She is not eating lunch at school, even though I pack it myself with things I think she will eat. The anxiety this is causing for me as a mother is beyond words and when she goes to her father's for the weekend, her grandmother coddles her and her father has a strict "swalllow it now" approach which I strongly disagree with. Her father is now insisting that I take her for tests because he thinks it is a physical problem but I know my child and I can see her fear. Please help...what else can I do and, most importantly, how long can I wait before it becomes detrimental to her nutrition needs? Also, should I subject her to invasive tests when I believe it is fear and anxiety? She doesn't express being uncomfortable when it is not meal time and will say things while eating such as , "it doesn't happen every time I eat, right?" I keep the conversation at mealtime on everything other than her fear of eating. I'm very worried and don't know whether to take her for testing or find a phycologist or just wait it out and if I need to wait it out, for how long? Any advice would be appreciated as I don't know what to do at this point.
momuv4girls responded:
When an incident such as this happens, it can cause a child such severe anxiety that they just won't eat - - it happened to my friends daughter.

I highly suggest you finding a "feeding therapist" - yes, there are such a thing! My friend found one for her daughter, and she was SO helpful.

Now depending on where you live, one may be not as easy to find (if you live in a more rural area). You may need to do some the local Hospital Children's Dept., call local Child Nutritional Services - something along those lines, to get a referral of someone who can help young ones.
Here is a link I found - - it would be great to find something along these lines:

Take care, and the best of luck to you and your daughter!!
rsjc1062 replied to momuv4girls's response:
Thank you so much for the response. We are making slow but steady progress and we do live in a rural area so I will definitely research feeding therapists and see what I can come up with. I knew she needed more psychological help then physical to help her overcome her fear but never new a feeding therapist existed. Thank you again for your response and the link.
momuv4girls replied to rsjc1062's response:
You're so very welcome! I hope you are able to find some local resources for your daughter.

Take care!!
mommytomason8 responded:
Hi there, can you tell me the progress with your daughter? I have an 8 year old son that choked about 7 weeks ago and now gets very anxious to the point it's hard for him to get full breathes. I tried the heimlich maneuver on him but it was to lodged and I had to call 911. I feel like he thinks I can not help him if it happens again. I have been able to get him to eat yogurt, vanilla icecream and will lick his food. it's becoming unbearable to watch. He's had an xray and seen his Dr and he said it will take time. Any suggestions?
bailee10 replied to rsjc1062's response:
Hello, how is your daughter? I to have the same problem now. My daughter is 10 and it's been since July 16th. She has lost weight and doesn't look good under her eyes. I'm going through so many emotions right now. I get scared and then angry. I took her to a doctor and he said when she gets hungry she will eat. I'm so worried. Please tell me your daughter is doing good now. I need some hope. As a mom I'm so fearful. I just don't know what to.

Thanks for your time.
arysdad replied to momuv4girls's response:
Hello! I recently noticed my daughter doing similar things,like chewing her food till it's liquefied and only wanting soft foods. She has choked on food before and ofcourse was scared! But she returned to normal eating habits. This chewing her food till its liquid kinda came outta nowhere. I asked her why she chews so much n she says she's scared of choking. I'm so scared for her and don't know what we should do? I'm making her a drs. Appt but till then should i just ignore her excessive chewing? She's only 5 and i don't want her to be scared of eating. Plz any other help or ideas would be so very appreciated thanks
tina_deli replied to bailee10's response:
Same here ladies except, my 8 year ols daughter witnessed a boy choking on his lunch at school and she is not eating good at ALL . Im very worried and scared.. I had to give her pedisures a couple of times because she did not finish her meals... Im hoping this passes another thing to mention is she has already began to lose weight
tina_deli responded:
How is your daughter now hun? My daughter is going through the same thing and im hoping this passes soon,
carri3k replied to tina_deli's response:
Hey guys...I have a 4 year old who choked on a peppermint a few weeks ago and then a week later had a stomach bug which he had vomiting(he thought choking)...since then he will only eat oodles of noodles, powdered doughnuts and yogurt:(. Like yall I see the fear in his eyes when I try and make him eat, he cries and said mommy I choke! I feel so helpless and all the doctor says is he will eat when he gets hungry:/
mskrista25 replied to carri3k's response:
My daughter who is 4 had a tortilla chip scare almost 2 weeks ago. She went 4 days without eating ads only drank juice and milk. I know it wasn't right to scare tactic her but I threatened to take her to the dr. Who would poke her to find out what's wrong. She hates shots as most kids do. She ate a little that night. Cut up Mac and cheese. I got her eating that, spag o's cut up also, that's a fun one to do and I've just added pediasur and she will inhale gogurts. She is freaked out to eat andi feel helpless that I can't help her. I have been trying to reinforce her also by telling her that I will be right there when we try something else to eat but she's a stubborn one and hasn't budged either. I feel like im losing my mind slowly. I wish us all the best.
carri3k replied to mskrista25's response:
Well I finally got my 4 year old to eat mac and cheese and mini pancakes, he still eats the gogurt and I bought the squeeze fruit out of the baby section he loves the earths best banana, rasp, and rice! I have added infamil liquid is a slow process and I still have anxiety over the whole situation, I pray that he eventually forgets about the experience! He doesn't like anything in his mouth now:/.

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