Nutritional Disorders Telehealth Network Project
Caregiver Competence Interventions
To advise family’s on appropriate dietary intake one must first consider the developmental age of a child and understand the “normal” fluctuations in dietary habits. Typically, children who are overweight have achieved the developmental milestones for eating the full range of foods (beyond a developmental age of two or older). However, some children have developmental conditions that might affect their accepted foods (e.g., mental retardation, pervasive developmental disorders & autism, genetic conditions including Prader Willi Syndrome).
Caregivers often hold expectations for children that are developmentally inappropriate (e.g., they expect children to be able to make healthy eating choices when other members of the family are not, they expect children to be able to anticipate how current food choices will affect future health status). A major task for the health care professional is to assess and correct any developmentally inappropriate expectations. All children should be involved in making behavior changes, but they cannot be expected to implement changes independently.
Parent Mental Illness Referral Worksheet
Referral for parent training in behavioral modification techniques for nutritional disorders.