In-depth mental health evaluation of a community sample of nonreferred infants with feeding difficulties




Evaluate the clinical characteristics of feeding difficulties in 30 community (i.e., nonreferred) infants in the first 2 years of life, and their correlation with mother/child interactions.


An “in depth” mental health evaluation of feeding difficulties, and the psychosocial functioning of the child in other areas. The mother-infant relationship and the feeding interactions were also assessed.


Four “groups” were identified. (1) Young infant with difficulties in regulating states and sucking. (2) Older infant with difficulties in self-regulation, focusing, hyper-alert, and with aversion to feeding. (3) Older infants hypersensitive to stimuli (taste, odor) and with difficulties in chewing. (4) Group of with varied and unique feeding problems (pica, rumination).


Feeding problems tend to have patterns according to the age of the baby in a nonreferred sample. They are not associated with an altered parent-infant relationship nor poor feeding technique. Parents often adapt successfully to the uniqueness of the baby to maintain weight gain. © 2008 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 2008