🥳🥳🥳 As of September 6th 2022, Izzy is an official GRADUATE of her feeding team consisting of her speech therapist and her nutritionist!!! She weighed in at 16.6 pounds (3rd percentile) and measured 27.4 inches long (<1st percentile), which puts her at the 21st percentile of weight to length ratio – proportionate and perfect! Izzy continues to grow along her curve as expected, so with no concerns at this time, she is able to follow the typical toddler feeding guidelines and her growth will be monitored by her pediatrician. WAY TO GO, IZZY SNOW! 🤩👏🏼😍🙌🏼
1 year old update: Izzy continues to work on feedings with her speech therapist. January is when we really started with spoon feeds even though she had tried a little bit prior to that. After attempting with a typical baby spoon and seeing her reject the food with tongue thrusting, her therapist had us switch to a Dr. Brown’s flat spatula-like spoon to see if that would help, and it did! We started with dipping the flat spoon into the baby food and resting it on Izzy’s bottom lip so that she could close her mouth around it and start to understand the oral motion. Now she is able to take full size bites of foods like pudding, oatmeal, and yogurt – some of her favorites! She even knows how to hold the spoon herself and put it in her mouth the correct way to eat 🤗 The reason for the flat spoon is because regular baby spoons can be too deep or rounded making it harder for a baby to get the food into their mouth, especially if they have any eating or swallowing issues like Izzy. Another thing we learned is that it isn’t good to push the spoon into a baby’s mouth and scrape the food off on the upper lip or gum, as this can easily cause gagging.
Izzy’s speech therapist also introduced us to chewy tubes, which we LOVE! They are shaped like T’s, good for teething, and the perfect tool for a young one to hold and explore sauces and foods with.
As of May, Izzy’s therapist wants to see her working on more solid foods since she is still having trouble swallowing anything besides puree-like textures and infant Gerber snacks, but she is very happy to see that Izzy is curious with foods and flavors. Although she is doing much better with petite-size bites of egg, banana, and whatever Dad is eating 😅
Izzy is now using a size 5 nipple and taking whole milk bottles!
As 2021 comes to an end, Izzy continues to trend in the right direction!
So far, Izzy’s speech appointments go hand-in-hand with her nutrition appointments, so just like nutrition, Izzy has had 4 appointments with her speech therapist since being discharged from Children’s on July 30th. While Izzy seems a bit young to have a speech therapist, the reason she does is for feeding. While she had difficulty prior to her reflux going away, speech helped with bottles, nipple size, and positioning while feeding. Izzy has come a long way and the need for speech seems near non-existent at this point, but the possibility of needing this therapy in the future is higher due to the 22q11 diagnosis, so we will continue to work with the speech therapist as we work with the nutritionist.
From July through October, Izzy was using size 1 bottle nipples and had to be held in a sideline position on a boppy in order to feed. Now, she uses a size 4 nipple and while she does enjoy the sideline position, she can also take her bottle in typical feeding form. She has even sat to eat for the times we’ve tried spoon-feeding.
At each of Izzy’s appointments, the nutritionist and speech therapist are more and more impressed with her improvements and capabilities. They even laughed one time saying they wished I could teach a class to other parents that they work with. 🤣
Last speech appointment of the year was October 12th. Next appointment will be in January.