An explorative study of the differences in feeding patterns of children with and without disabilities in a rural community in Karnataka.
Background: Children with disabilities are nutritionally vulnerable due to feeding difficulties associated with disabilities. Aim & Objective: To investigate factors associated with feeding difficulties in children with/without disabilities. Settings and Design: A cross-sectional analytical study was undertaken in the rural field practice area of a medical college in Karnataka. Methods and Material: Data collected on 145 children with disability and 145 neighbors/sibling/ classmates of the child using a pretested semi-structured questionnaire was analyzed using SPSS 20.0 Statistical analysis: Difficulties faced by feeding children with/without disabilities were expressed in percentages. Chi-square test was used to determine the association between feeding time, challenges encountered, and need for assistance p (<0.05). Results: The mothers mostly assisted feeding. Significant differences in need for support among children with disabilities 19 (13.5%) and without disabilities 3(2.1%) during meals and time taken to feed were seen. The most common difficulty was the improper position 13(9.0%) among children with disabilities. Conclusions: Mother is the significant person involved in feeding children with & without disabilities. Help in feeding, improper position of the child, vomiting tendency while feeding was more common with children with disabilities than without disabilities.
Disabled children, Intellectual disability, Vomiting, Caregivers.
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