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Sensitivity in the Mouth

Usually parents worry about their children having Ice creams. With a 5 year old son who has autism, we were a different lot. Our son was very much sensitive to many things which included lot of food items. He would never take any food which was semi solid or jelly like or cold or whatever new conditions he could come up on tasting it.

It was simply not because of his choice of food, that he was rejecting some of these items, his senses were simply uncomfortable with some of the food sensations. Oh! how nice it would have been to have a kid who did not have to fight with the pulls and pressures within his body. And just said, "I want that Ice cream mummy". We weren't that lucky, but we did not wait for our luck to turn around.

We worked on his sensitivities in various ways, by gently encouraging him to try new food, by giving required oral massages around his mouth, by using a special oro-motor brush and by treating other sensitivities likewise. Broadly these kind of activities are covered by occupational therapy. The school that my son is studying is excellent in this regard. With their occupational therapy support, one day we were in for a nice surprise. Our son started having Ice creams. Yes. Ice Creams(can you hear us screaming). This is not to say we should encourage kids to have Ice creams, which has a junk food status. But this is to share our joy of how our son overcame his sensitivity to enjoy the simple pleasure of something that every kid like him enjoy without a second thought.

Here is a big thanks to all the professionals who supported us.

Also a little note to other parents who are facing similar challenges. When it comes to food behaviour, rather than forcing your son or daughter into a diet plan which they do not like, start with the food they like. Gently nudge them to eat the food they like by themselves in a disciplined way. This routine itself will prepare them for taking other foods. All the best.