Eating and drinking

Children can be fussy eaters, and this is a typical stage that most children go through. Parents can often find their children start refusing certain food groups, or foods that they have previously eaten. 

Top tips for fussy eaters:

  • Eat together as a family and be a positive role models for meal times and snacks
  • Offer something you know your child will eat at meal times
  • Give small portions sizes as this is less daunting for your child. When they finish, praise them and offer more.
  • Offer finger foods, this gives children the opportunity to touch and feel the food and they are always in control. 
  • Meal times should last no longer than 20-30 minutes.
  • Involve your child in food related activities such as shopping, putting food away and cooking.
  • Allow your child to experience messy play activities.
  • Avoid cleaning your child's face during meal times, allowing their face and hands to get messy.


More information about sensory feeding difficulties

Your baby's first solid foods - NHS (

Picky eating 1 - introduction

Picky eating 2 - what and how children eat

Picky eating 3 - sensory issues

Picky eating 4 - practical strategies

Factsheets - Infant & Toddler Forum (

32 Steps To Eating STARGOLD 04-23-18 (


Dysphagia - Eating, drinking and swallowing difficulties

Speech and language therapy service (Children & young people’s)