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9 year old girl WILL NOT EAT!
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9 year old girl WILL NOT EAT!

Please help.  My best friends daughter will not eat.  She is only nine and will only eat Trix yogurt at lunch or at dinner.  She says she hates the smell and texture and taste of anything else.  When we try to force her she gets so upset that she cries and makes herself sick and throws up.  I feel like we should continue to force her to eat, but her mom gets upset too, and gives in... What should we do?  Is there a way to encourage kids to eat?  We are trying to get her to eat one bite of something every night...  Is this the best we can do?  Are there some well known reasons for why some kids don't eat? Personality description: She is VERY well-behaved, an A student, helps around the house, an older sibling of a sister (who eats) and even cleans up.  Thank you! ~nancy
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13167_tn?1327197724
How about Ensure or other nutrition drinks?  

Maybe both of you demanding that she eat is too much?    It might be a better dynamic if her mother and mom's best friend aren't pressuring her all the time to eat.

I understand this is a concern,  and the bigger concern here is that this is an eating disorder rather than a food preference issue.  Her personality profile fits the bill for anorexia.  

Can she talk to a school counselor?  
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603946_tn?1333945439
try zyrtec- it makes me eat- and it makes my kiddos hungry. What is her weight percentile comparatively to her age group? She needs to see her pediatrician and mention that she does not like the texture and smell of lots of foods. That may mean something. I didn't like anything crunchy that was uncooked- onions, celery, lettuce.

Anorexia is a form of control. If she is in the healthy percentile weight wise- the more pressure she gets- the more she will try to control the situation- "not eating" even if it is not a conscious behavior. She knows she is not eating but she probably doesn't associate it with control. In my day- parents were told - about me- "She'll eat when she's hungry" I did- I was 89 pounds when I graduated/ LOL I am 25 pounds overweight now at age 47.

I am worried more these days though, since anorexia has been so prevalent in our society.
What does she eat at school?
Does she take any medicines? Some meds side effects suppress the appetite.


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Avatar_n_tn
My son as a toddler refused to eat, didnt gain weight and the Health visitor said to just leave Jaffa Cakes on the table where he could reach them and he will eat them, they are reasonably healthy and to just get anything into him. Even if it meant 10 jaffa cakes a day just to maintain the weight. Worry about healthy etc later. Its the fat they need when they are young. He did Jaffa Cakes for about a month then we moved onto plain pasta with butter, followed by some cheese on the pasta then some ham etc.

I agree that probably making meal time a constant battle is not helping. Most children will not starve themselves.

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Avatar_m_tn
people who do not have this problem with their child, cannot and will not understand that "asking" a child to try something doesn't work...my granddaughter is 9, she is frail and has dark circles under eyes. We have tried LITERALLY everything. She doesn't care to go to bed hungry, or be grounded, or even swatted when her daddy has had his fill of it. I worry so about her, we've tried the ensure thing...that didn't work, she wont take vitamins. Thinking about taking her to the Dr...have you had any luck?
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Avatar_m_tn
   Its probably worth checking out SIDS or Sensory Integration (or processing) Disorder.  A good site is here - http://www.sensory-processing-disorder.com/sensory-processing-disorder-checklist.html
  Basically some of the symptoms of SIDS that could apply to her are:
        Signs Of Oral Input Dysfunction:



1. Hypersensitivity To Oral Input (Oral Defensiveness):



__ picky eater, often with extreme food preferences; i.e., limited repertoire of foods, picky about brands, resistive to trying new foods or restaurants, and may not eat at other people's houses)

__ may only eat "soft" or pureed foods past 24 months of age

__ may gag with textured foods

__ has difficulty with sucking, chewing, and swallowing; may choke or have a fear of choking

__ resists/refuses/extremely fearful of going to the dentist or having dental work done

__ may only eat hot or cold foods

__ refuses to lick envelopes, stamps, or stickers because of their taste

__ dislikes or complains about toothpaste and mouthwash

__ avoids seasoned, spicy, sweet, sour or salty foods; prefers bland foods
              Signs Of Olfactory Dysfunction (Smells):



1. Hypersensitivity To Smells (Over-Responsive):



__ reacts negatively to, or dislikes smells which do not usually bother, or get noticed, by other people

__ tells other people (or talks about) how bad or funny they smell

__ refuses to eat certain foods because of their smell

__ offended and/or nauseated by bathroom odors or personal hygiene smells

__ bothered/irritated by smell of perfume or cologne

__ bothered by household or cooking smells

__ may refuse to play at someone's house because of the way it smells

__ decides whether he/she likes someone or some place by the way it smells

      so its probably worth checking out.
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1801781_tn?1410753824
good info sandman

some other links!

http://www.livestrong.com/article/540331-what-are-the-sensory-issues-when-a-child-wont-eat/

http://www.sensory-processing-disorder.com/picky-eaters.html

http://community.advanceweb.com/blogs/ot_4/archive/2011/02/28/non-medical-reasons-for-not-eating.aspx
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Avatar_m_tn
im a nine yearr old girl named carrie and my mom encouraged me to eat
by telling me that it does not matter if you are fat or skinny you still are the same to me. And todays my first day of eating good meals and im lovin' it!
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1801781_tn?1410753824
honey that is so true.  The pictures we see in the magazines  are usually fixed so those pretty skinny girls look skinnier than they really are and they have any problems fixed so we never see them.  Those models that wear the pretty clothes on the runways starve themselves to fit clothes you and I will never be able to wear or even afford.

  Your mommy is very smart.  Give her a hug for me!
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535822_tn?1417529476
what a super dooper girl you are ...and mommy is really right she loves you whatever, I am sure mommy makes you healthy foods anyway ..and some are really delicious but treats are also okay...
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