As many as 50 percent of parents report feeding difficulties with their children and are worried about their child’s physical and mental development
Studies show that 6 out of 10 mothers report that their children have feeding difficulties.
The Identification and Management of Feeding Difficulties (IMFeD) program is an evidence-based solution system that aims to screen, assess, and diagnose children with feeding difficulties. It also provides tools and appropriate treatment plans for the different types of feeding difficulties.
Currently, there are more than 400 IMFeD MD Network who can be consulted for these conditions. These doctors have collaborated to form an IMFeD network to share the advocacy of screening every child for feeding difficulties and to provide clinical expertise in managing these children.
Abbott Nutrition Philippines supports this endeavor by creating awareness on the IMFeD MD Network.
The effect may last up to 11 years of a child’s life and children with severe and prolonged feeding difficulties may experience impaired growth and low nutrient intake which result in physical and cognitive problems if not reversed.
"Feeding difficulties can be severe enough to impact on growth and nutrient intake, so it is important not only to address the eating behavior but also to provide adequate calories and nutrients to children as part of their management," said Dr. Rita Paz Rowena A. De Guzman, Fellow and Board Member, Philippine Society for Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics.
The most common nutrients lacking in a child with feeding difficulties include Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Iron and Zinc. In order for a child to reach their optimum growth potential they require these essential nutrients as well as adequate calories.
Feeding Difficulties have different types:
There are four general types of feeding difficulties:
- Parental Perceptions – child who is achieving satisfactory growth but the parents believe their child’s appetite is limited.
- Fundamentally vigorous – child who rarely shows signs of hunger or interest in food. The child is very active, more interested in playing and is easily distracted.
- Highly Selective eater – child has limited food selection, has negative reactions to taste, texture, smell and appearance of food
- Fear of feeding – child is afraid to eat after having a painful or bad experience with eating
IMFeD Aims to Address this Serious Condition:
Since there are different types of feeding behaviors that require a tailored approach, mothers need to be aware of the seriousness of this condition. Prevention and early intervention are important and these can be best consulted with a pediatrician trained on the management of feeding difficulties.
To know the doctors who are part of the IMFeD MD Network in your area, please call 995-1555 or 1-800-10-995-155.