September 2015 Moms

Another BLW question

LO is just about 9 months and as I posted before, we had an overnight stay at the hospital because she aspirated some food. Are your LO's still frequently gagging and choking on food?? When does it stop? I'm a little bit more scared now because of everything that we just went through, but I'm starting to question my baby's abilities. Is it common for her to still be choking on food so often? I feel like it's beyond the normal gagging, it's like a down the wrong pipe thing. Sometimes her eyes water a little bit and she has to do a few good coughs to get the food back up. She still gets all soft steamed foods with the exception of Cheerios, cucumbers, bread, and fruits which are naturally pretty soft. Am I just traumatized from the hospital experience or is she having swallowing problems???

Re: Another BLW question

  • We've been doing BLW since we started food, and the gagging was every meal at first, but I rarely notice it now. I'm much more lax with size of pieces because she's good at taking smaller bites, so when she does gag or cough now, it's because it was hard to bite through, so it was too long (like asparagus or green beans).

    Where your LO did aspirate, I bet it's so nerve wracking now to feed her! DD1 only choked once (on orange wedge, and it came out with back thrusts) but it was the scariest experience, and I've been chopping citrus into teeny tiny bites for LO, probably will til she's old enough to cut it herself!
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  • I do not see gagging/choking now. If it were me, I'd ask my ped and maybe get a referral to check it out (occupational or probably more likely speech language therapist). I always play better safe than sorry. 
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  • We are seeing an occupational therapist for gagging/puking problems. She made some tweaks to our feeding routines to help get us on track. Things like crumbling up a cracker into purées to add some texture and using carrots and celery sticks and her purées like a dip. And she had us buy one of those banana teething toothbrushes to help dd desensitize her mouth. 
  • An SLP or an OT can absolutely do swallow studies.  My sister-in-law is an SLP, and has preemie twins, one of whom had some delays in developing his swallowing capabilities (ended up hospitalized with pneumonia due in part to some aspirating issues). 
  • Thanks everyone!! I'm hoping I'm just paranoid. Sometimes she eats just fine and other times it's a lot of coughing. I'll just keep an eye and if it gets bad enough I guess I'll look in to the swallow study thing. We've always done solids so I would think after 3 months she'd be a little better at swallowing but every baby is different I suppose
  • You should look into posterior tongue tie. There's a tongue tie baby support group on Facebook. Difficulty swallowing and particularly solids is a huge symptom of it. My son had it and it made nursing excruciatingly painful and he couldn't transfer milk. We had it revised even though we had stopped nursing (I EP) and he's gagged on foods maybe five times and we've done BLW from the start at 6 months. 
  • I'm a SLP but I've been working in geriatrics for awhile now and it's been some time since I've seen babies.... But it sounds like she may be getting a little bit more then she can handle. Maybe her bitesare big? Or is she chewing less? I would say try encouraging lots of drinking while she's eating or slow her down. Just give the food enough time to get to her stomach before she eats another bite. Really pay attention to what she's coughing one. Some food are hard to chew (things with skin,seeds, things that don't form into a bolus in her mouth) is it just solids? If so she probably is ok just adjusting to chew! Did she get weaker with pneumonia maybe it's lingering from her not feeling well. if she keeps coughing enough were her eyes are watering ask for a referral from the dr to see an SLP over and OT. We specialize in the actual swallow vs feeding :) 
  • I think she was just going through a stage where she was learning to put more food in her mouth or chew it better or eat faster or something. She spent a couple days being a really scary sounding eater and then all of a sudden she was an eating machine. Much faster and all around better at eating. Some sort of phase I think! Thanks for the input everyone 
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