Tube Feeding Overview
Many children need feeding tubes to provide some or all of their nutrition. Tubes help parents provide great nutrition while children are becoming safe for oral eating, learning to enjoy eating, have confidence in their eating skills and have internal motivation to eat enough to grow. These tube feedings are mealtimes, too! Nourish provides support, information and resource services to families through a Tube Feeding Parent Support Group and scholarships.
View upcoming Tube Feeding events on our calendar page.
TUBE FEEDING PARENT SUPPORT GROUP
Parents (Grandparents, caregivers) of kids with special needs often feel alone, frustrated and isolated. Caring for a child with special needs requires information and lots of patience---something that is easy to run out of!
Support groups offer a way to help parents learn new things and talk about the frustration, anxiety and fear that often comes with caring for a child who has their own way of doing things.
Support groups provide a place to share thoughts, feelings and ideas with other parents who are struggling with the same concerns. It is a place where there is no judgment, no criticism and where parents can feel safe.
Support groups offer hope to parents who feel alone, sometimes helpless and worried. By sharing stories and problems, parents can get suggestions and support and recognize that their feelings and reactions are normal. Parents often leave support groups with a renewed sense of well being and empowerment to carry on again. Emails are shared and friendships often form.
Support groups can make the difference between feeling alone and realizing that you are not. (The above introduction was written by Margaret Dykinga, M.Ed.,RN.)
sponsors a parent group for parents of children who are fed by tube. It meets every other fourth Thursday from 9 am -10:30 am. Join us for discussions, speakers and sharing parent to parent. We will:
- Help you turn tube feeding into mealtimes
- Share ideas with parents new to tube feeding
- Learn from parents who are experienced with tube feeding
- Discover resources on tube feeding
- Investigate homemade blended formulas
Tube Feeding Family Stories
My Baby Needed a Feeding Tube
It was a Tuesday afternoon I will never forget. My 8-month old son went to the doctor for a check-up because his weight had been so low. I got the news that my little baby needed a feeding tube because he was just not able to sustain himself with his current eating habits. In a daze, I called a feeding therapy specialist that a close friend had recommended. Things seemed to slowly turn around and I felt like I was not alone in trying to get this stubborn little child to eat and actually enjoy food. Our therapist worked with him and myself, showed me how to keep his attention and make mealtime exciting. After a few months, the doctors removed the feeding tube and 18 months later, he is thriving! He is actually on the growth chart and enjoys eating! It was such a rollercoaster of emotions at the time, but looking back, I am so grateful for having the support of a feeding specialist and I am so glad Nourish supports families like ours who are struggling to help their children eat.
By Shelby Larkin, Vander’s Mom
Love in My Tummy
Mason would show agitation at the mere sight of a syringe due to the discomfort and vomiting that would soon follow. Mealtimes were not a pleasant time but merely another medical procedure that was performed every four hours in our home. It never dawned on me that I could be feeding him REAL food…
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Clayton’s Quest: A Homemade Blended Formula Story!
Tuesday, Bryce and I made another trip down to Tucson to meet with Marsha Dunn Klein, OTR/L and Ellen Duperret, RD. This was our third visit and the first one since beginning to feed Bryce real food through the tube. It had been 6 weeks since our last visit. The first month we focused on getting Bryce off of his night feedings. That went well, so this past 6 weeks we have gradually transitioned his evening meal from formula to “real food” blended together and given through his g-tube…
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A Mother’s Story
I learned about Nourish from a complete stranger that walked up to me when she saw my daughter’s feeding tube and said that she needed to be my friend. I was caught off guard but happy that someone wanted to talk to me about my daughter’s feeding tube rather than just stare and speak amongst themselves. I now consider this stranger a good friend and I can’t even begin to tell you how thankful I am that she told me about Nourish.
My daughter has a complex medical history as most children do that benefit from the services provided through Nourish. She quit eating in November, 2011 when she was only 4 months old and wouldn’t allow anything to come close to her mouth. With the help and guidance of her feeding therapists she is now putting toys up to her mouth, tasting food, and letting me brush her teeth.
Everyday is challenging but I have been given hope, patience, and support through Nourish. Also, my daughter was approved for a grant through Nourish to see a dietician. Our insurance wouldn’t cover an infant to see a dietician even though I explained that she is 100% tube fed. Trying to figure out how many calories and fluids a tube fed child needs is one of the many challenges that parents face. The team at Nourish is a group of dedicated and loving professionals that do whatever they can to help. To say that they are advocates is an understatement. They are truly a blessing in our lives.
By Erin, Nevaeh’s Mom