Chewing exercise for children with Down Syndrome….and children presenting with chewing delays
This is a very simple exercise….and is frequently motivating for little ones. Take a preferred yogurt….put inside of a straw…close off both ends with a clip strong enough to keep the straw from leaking yogurt. Put the yogurt in the freezer. After frozen…take out…remove one of the clips…and present the straw sideways (horizontally) inside your little one’s mouth….on the back molars. Encourage your little one to chew on the frozen treat
….as she is chewing on it….the frozen yogurt should come out of the straw. Practice on both sides of her mouth.
Remember increasing taste and temperature…with regard to food…gives little ones with Down Syndrome more information. Remember too…their sensory neurons are hypo-sensitive to taste and temperature…so when we increase the temperature (a colder food)….and increase the taste (buy yogurt that has a stronger flavor)….this additional information helps their sensory neurons….the texture of the frozen straw on the molars also gives additional information to the sensory and motor system…ah!…this will help in chewing. So giving more sensory information with regard to taste and temperature helps the sensory system…which then will also help the motor system for chewing.
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