|Using Descriptive Assessments in the Assessment and Treatment of Feeding Problems
|Sunday, May 24, 2009
|1:30 PM–2:50 PM
|North 226 AB
|Area: EAB/CBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
|Chair: Peter Girolami (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
|Discussant: Cathleen C. Piazza (Munroe-Meyer Institute)
|CE Instructor: Abigail Calkin, Ph.D.
|Abstract: Research has demonstrated the utility of descriptive assessments in assessing and treating numerous topographies of problem behavior. By identifying events that are correlated with the occurrence of behavior, descriptive assessments provide a starting point for examining relations between caregiver and child behavior. The papers in this symposium will apply the utility of descriptive assessments to the assessment and treatment of feeding disorders.
|Descriptive analysis of parental attention preceding and following appropriate and inappropriate mealtime behavior
|JULIA N. WOODS (Kennedy Krieger Institute), John C. Borrero (University of Maryland, Baltimore County), Carrie S. W. Borrero (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
|Abstract: Descriptive observations were conducted to record occurrences of appropriate and inappropriate mealtime behavior and various forms of parental attention (i.e., coaxing, reprimands, and statements of concern) for 26 children admitted to an intensive feeding program and their parents. Using the data from the descriptive observations, lag sequential analyses were conducted to identify changes in the probability of child appropriate and inappropriate mealtime behavior before and after specific forms of parental attention. Lag sequential analyses were also conducted to examine changes in the probability of parental attention before and after instances of child appropriate and inappropriate mealtime behavior. While the primary focus of studies assessing inappropriate mealtime behavior has focused on the role of escape (as negative reinforcement), results of the current study will emphasize the potential links between parental attention and child behavior.
|Descriptive Analyses of Pediatric Food Refusal
|CARRIE S. W. BORRERO (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Julia N. Woods (Kennedy Krieger Institute), John C. Borrero (University of Maryland, Baltimore County), Elizabeth A. Masler (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
|Abstract: Functional analyses of inappropriate mealtime behavior (e.g., expelling food, turning head, batting spoon) typically include conditions to determine if the contingent delivery of adult attention, tangible items, or escape reinforce food refusal. In this investigation, descriptive analyses were conducted to determine if the consequences delivered during functional analysis of inappropriate mealtime behavior were observed during more naturalistic interactions between parents and children. Descriptive analyses were conducted for 25 children admitted to an intensive feeding program for the assessment and treatment of food refusal, during parent-conducted meals. The conditional probabilities for specific forms of attention (e.g., coaxing, comforting statements), delivery of tangible items (e.g., switching to different foods or drinks, leisure items), and escape (e.g., spoon/cup removal, terminating the meal) following food refusal were compared to the conditional probabilities of those events following acceptance and the unconditional probabilities of each event. Results showed that forms of attention and escape were the most frequent events following inappropriate mealtime behavior and that the conditional probabilities of events differed depending on the topography of food refusal. Potential difficulties of such analyses are considered, and directions for further evaluations of parent-child interactions, as related to feeding problems, are discussed.
|Using Descriptive Assessments in the Assessment and Treatment of Bite Acceptance and Food Refusal
|SEAN D. CASEY (The Pennsylvania State University), Susan Banks (The Pennsylvania State University), Kasey Kotz (The Pennsylvania State University)
|Abstract: The feeding behaviors of children who display chronic food refusal often require the use of escape extinction procedures to be successful. The main presumption for this is that food refusal is maintained by negative reinforcement. Reducing food refusal by reinforcing bite acceptance is typically an unsuccessful strategy unless such procedures are combined with escape extinction. In this study, several children were exposed to descriptive analyses of their feeding behaviors to identify the schedules of reinforcement in place by care-providers for bite acceptance and food refusal. Successful interventions were created by subsequently manipulating the existing schedules for bite acceptance and food refusal by the care-providers. The resulting data for the schedules of reinforcement from the descriptive analyses predicted when treatments would require escape extinction and when escape extinction was unnecessary. Implications for the use of descriptive analyses for assessing feeding problems are discussed.