The majority of children between one and five years of age who are brought in by their parents for refusing to eat are healthy and have an appetite that is appropriate for their age and growth rate. Unrealistic parental expectations may result in unnecessary concern, and inappropriate threats or punishments may aggravate a child's refusal to eat. A detailed history and general physical examination are necessary to rule out acute and chronic illnesses. A food diary and assessment of parental expectations about eating behaviour should be completed. Where the child's 'refusal' to eat is found to be related to unrealistic expectations, parents should be reassured and counselled about the normal growth and development of children at this age.
- Picky eating
- Poor eating
- Refusal to eat
- Unrealistic parental expectations
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health