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Child likes to taste non edible items, what could be the problem in child?

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Pediatrician, Pulmonology
Practicing since : 2003
Answered : 1710 Questions
My 8 year old daughter has the liking to taste stuff that are not eatable. example lotion , glue,colours. I have spoken and advice her the consequences. Despit that she does it. What can I do .
Posted Tue, 18 Feb 2014 in Child Health
Answered by Dr. Arun 6 days later
Brief Answer: This needs further evaluation Detailed Answer: Hi Thanks for writing to health care magic. Your kid has the medical problem called pica which is eating non eatable items despite regular advice and persistent for more than a month. There are several medical causes for this problem. You need to evaluate your child for them . Few include iron deficiency, worms in stomach, zinc deficiency, eating disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder etc. Pica is XXXXXXX as it can result in lead poisoning, intestinal obstruction , even perforation, anemia. Treatment is to identify some of the causes I mentioned above and treating them. Example if she has worms in stool , she needs deworming. If she has iron deficiency , she needs iron supplements. If the problem persists , she needs psychological counselling too. But don't worry, give time and the problem will settle soon. Keep telling her all the while, but do investigate. Wishing her great health Dr Arun
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