Clinical Forum  |   April 2008
Using Motor Learning Approaches for Treating Swallowing and Feeding Disorders: A Review
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Justine J. Sheppard
    Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, NY
Swallowing, Dysphagia & Feeding Disorders / Clinical Forum
Clinical Forum   |   April 2008
Using Motor Learning Approaches for Treating Swallowing and Feeding Disorders: A Review
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools April 2008, Vol.39, 227-236. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2008/022)
History: Accepted 28 Feb 2007 , Received 04 Jun 2006
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools April 2008, Vol.39, 227-236. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2008/022)
History: Accepted 28 Feb 2007 , Received 04 Jun 2006

Purpose: This article discusses children’s development of mature swallowing and feeding as a process of skill acquisition and considers the applicability of motor learning concepts for advancing these capabilities in school-aged children.

Method: The motor learning literature was reviewed, with concentration on (a) concepts that are relevant for the acquisition of skill and (b) structuring practice experiences to optimize learning.

Results: The discussion includes (a) swallowing physiology with a focus on motor task components, (b) normal development of eating skills, (c) factors that may slow or disrupt normal development, (d) motor learning concepts found to influence learning efficiency and performance adequacy, (e) applications to the assessment and treatment of pediatric swallowing and feeding disorders, and (f) an illustrative case history.

Conclusion: Deficiencies in swallowing and feeding may encompass eating, saliva control, swallowing during oral hygiene, and swallowing medications. Motor learning literature provides a rich foundation of evidence-based theory and educational strategies for the development and remediation of motor-based skills such as swallowing and feeding.

Order a Subscription
Pay Per View
Entire Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools content & archive
24-hour access
This Article
24-hour access

Related Articles

SOS Approach to Feeding
SIG 13 Perspectives on Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (Dysphagia) October 2011, Vol.20, 82-87. doi:10.1044/sasd20.3.82
A Sensory-Motor Approach to Feeding
SIG 13 Perspectives on Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (Dysphagia) October 2011, Vol.20, 60-64. doi:10.1044/sasd20.3.60
Editor’s Corner
SIG 13 Perspectives on Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (Dysphagia) December 2013, Vol.22, 127-128. doi:10.1044/sasd22.4.127
Coordinator’s Column
SIG 3 Perspectives on Voice and Voice Disorders November 2013, Vol.23, 69-70. doi:10.1044/vvd23.3.69
Development and Content Validation of the Pediatric Eating Assessment Tool (Pedi-EAT)
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology February 2014, Vol.23, 46-59. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2013/12-0069)