What is Dysphagia? Dysphagia is difficulty swallowing or eating.
Dysphagia can occur during any stage of the feeding process, from chewing of food, formation of a bolus, to the passage of the bolus through the esophagus. Dyspagia can result from a variety of underlying problems such as muscle weakness, physiological malformation, and sensory integration dysfunction. Feeding problems can cause mild to severe malnutrition, behavioral complications, and serious health concerns.
Even a child incapable of speech can directly communicate a feeding problem. Nonverbal clues may include one or more of the following:
- Arching or stiffening of the body during feeding
- Irritability or lack of alertness during feeding
- Refusing food or liquid
- Failure to accept different textures of food (e.g., only pureed foods or crunchy cereals)
- Long feeding times (e.g., more than 30 minutes)
- Difficulty chewing
- Difficulty breast feeding
- Coughing or gagging during meals
- Excessive drooling or food/liquid coming out of the mouth or nose
- Difficulty coordinating breathing with eating and drinking
- Increased stuffiness during meals
- Gurgling, hoarse, or breathy voice quality
- Frequent spitting up or vomiting
- Recurring pneumonia or respiratory infections
- Less than normal weight gain or growth
How We Can Help
The clinicians at Baron Therapy specialize in the treatment of dysphagia through expert feeding therapy. We combine research-based methods with 20 years of clinical experience to successfully provide expert care to children who have difficulty talking. We have a passion for helping children become effective verbal communicators.
If a child has a feeding disorder, the younger a child starts treatment the better. Early intervention can help remove these problems to the fullest extent.
Have a Question?
Ready to Go?