Mealtime support

Our multidisciplinary team of therapists can support children, young people and families with a range of strategies and intervention for happier mealtimes.

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What is it and why do I need it?

Family mealtimes can be a great way to bond with your child and teach them healthy habits that will last a lifetime.

However, sometimes mealtimes can be challenging. You may also have concerns about the limited range of foods and quantities that your child is eating.

We know the importance of nourishment, and the significant effects that food has on development, moods, behaviour, concentration, and overall health.

Yet, despite your best efforts your child’s eating a food intake may be insubstantial.

Causes of mealtime struggles

A variety of factors can be the cause of mealtime struggles, including:

  • Experience with reflux
  • Negative associations with the mealtime environment such as with a highchair
  • Negative associations with feeding such as choking experiences
  • Medical reasons such as constipation
  • Sensory issues with tastes, textures, and smells
  • Difficulties chewing and/or swallowing
  • Food refusal and aversions

An assessment can help to identify what factors may be causing mealtime distress and address them with tailored therapies to help overcome your child’s challenges and increase your family’s enjoyment of food and mealtimes.

How can we help?

Eating is a complex physical task, especially for children.

Our speech and language pathologists can assess and identify any developmental challenges, structural or medical issues or environmental conditions that may be hindering successful mealtimes.

We’ll provide you with a plan on how to tackle feeding challenges for better outcomes.

Our therapy plans may include other therapists including occupational therapists, psychologists, physiotherapists, or dietitians depending on the feeding challenges identified in the assessment.

Or we can assist you with referrals to other medical professionals where required.

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Program structure

When you seek support from Early Start Australia, we begin with an intake session where a therapist will meet with parents and carers (without the child) and discuss the child’s full history and gain an understanding of the mealtime challenges.

The therapist will suggest assessment options which will, in most cases, occur over 2 sessions with a speech pathologist.

After the assessment, the therapist will produce a report on the findings, identifying challenges, strengths, and areas for development.

The speech pathologist will make recommendations on the types of therapy required and help you engage with medical professionals if a medical issue is identified.

Therapy programs can vary greatly depending on the child’s needs, from 1:1 support from a speech pathologist or support from a range of therapists such as occupational therapists and dietitians to group therapy programs.

We’ll work with you to develop a tailored therapy plan that works with your child and family’s goals in mind.

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Book now

Book now with one of our Speech Therapists as part of a multidisciplinary team and start your therapy journey now.

Find a clinic near you

We have clinics in every state and territory providing assessments, early childhood intervention therapies, and support to help you thrive.

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The ESA difference

esa difference

Our dedicated teams of Occupational Therapists, Psychologists, Speech Pathologists and Physiotherapists work with our clients to help them meet their growth and development goals.

We focus on supporting clients (and their families) to develop language, motor, cognitive, social and emotional skills, and provide therapy supports for children with developmental delay or disability, including autism spectrum disorder.

Why choose Early Start Australia

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Multi-disciplinary team

Our multi-disciplinary teams work together with you to understand your needs and develop a plan using evidence-based strategies to help you achieve your goals and aspirations.

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Australian wide network of centres

We have clinics in every state and territory creating a strong community of allied health professionals with the collective knowledge and expertise to deliver you the best outcomes.

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Registered NDIS provider

We are a registered NDIS provider and are here to help you on your NDIS journey.

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Early intervention for all ages

Early intervention is not just for the kids. We offer therapies to cater for all ages, needs and abilities,
and we know the sooner you start your therapy journey the better.

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