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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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How can I increase my child's appetite?

Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Diptanshu Das

Pediatrician

Practicing since :2005

Answered : 3586 Questions

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Posted on Mon, 23 Jul 2018 in Child Health
Question: My 16 month baby is not eating food from past 5 to 6 days whenever we are trying to feed her she closes her mouth if we try to force feed her she cries and falls on the ground before she used to eat regularly but now not eating anything.We have given her deworming for 2 times 5 ml as advised by pediatrician. She is very cranky most of the time. She cries for everything like.. bathing, changing clothes, etc.. In night also she sleeps very less and wakes up every 2-3 hrs and starts crying. She passes gases many times in night. We feed her regular food only like roti, dal, rice, khichdi etc. Please suggest so that she starts eating and her crankiness also we can make less.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Diptanshu Das 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Avoid any sort of feeds in between meals.

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for asking on HealthcareMagic.

I have gone carefully through your query and understand your concerns. Incidentally your problem is not unique. Children are often fussy eaters. My suggestions for you would be:
* Please be informed that there are NO syrups, medicines or tonics that can help in changing the situation. I would insist you not to go for any one of them.
* You can feel free to give this Pediakid Syrup a try but let me mention that the claims are not evidence based and many of the reviews that you read could actually be paid reviews. My personal opinion would be not to fall for these but in case you want to go ahead with it, just follow the package insert or the instructions.
* Do not force feed the baby. This will increase the child's apathy towards food. Rather wait for the child to get hungry. At times you may have to wait several hours. Be patient. The urge should be her and not yours.
* Visit a dietician and discuss the scenario so that she can design a calorie-dense diet chart in accordance to the preferences of the child.
* The build of a child depends upon the build of the parents. If you and your spouse were thin in your childhood you cannot expect your child to be otherwise.* Try to avoid any minor feeds between meals. They take the appetite away.
* Restrict the number of times she receives breast feed (if at all). Limit breast milk intake to not more than thrice daily.
* Treat the child as a member of family and make him dine together with others. Even if the child is not eating, make her sit with others while they take their meal.
* Keep the meal amounts small and keep other food items readily available for the child to pick up. For example, keep fruits ready to be picked up from the table.
* Please be informed that there are NO syrups, medicines or tonics that can help in changing the situation. I would insist you not to go for any one of them.
* Treat the child as a member of family and make him dine together with others. Even if the child is not eating, make her sit with others while they take their meal.
* Keep the meal amounts small and keep other food items readily available for the child to pick up. For example, keep fruits ready to be picked up from the table.
* Take the child along with you while you go to fetch groceries. Pick fruits and vegetables as per his choice (ask for his choice). Make food preparations using those food items. The child is more likely to eat those without a fuss.
* The way out might not be easy. But remember that you need to reduce your botheration. With careful improvisations I am sure that the situation would improve.

Feel free to write back.

Regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Kampana
doctor
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Follow up: Dr. Diptanshu Das 14 minutes later
thank you very much will try to implement what you suggested. can you please suggest anything for her crankiness she is always crying or shouting she doesn't like to take bath or change clothes she wants to stay with me or my wife. we live in joint family and she hardly goes to other members.
doctor
Answered by Dr. Diptanshu Das 38 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Behavioral modification therapy & cognitive behavioral therapy should help.

Detailed Answer:
The underlying cause of her crankiness needs to be identified. It could be a behavioral issue. It might help if you visit a child psychologist. After a clear communication with the parents he/she would be able to suggest behavioral modifications for the parents that could help in managing the situation more effectively.

Regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Nagamani Ng
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