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    My Toddler Refuses to Sit and Eat, What Should I Do?

    Daily Care Tips

    My Toddler Refuses to Sit and Eat, What Should I Do?

    Updated on 31 October 2022

    Medically Reviewed by

    Dt. Mansi Goyal

    Specializes in Critical Gestational Diabetes, PCOS Patients - BSC| MSC (Home Science, Food & Nutrition)

    View Profile

    You are having trouble getting your toddler or how to make toddler eat? Without turning dinner into an epic fight, this 4-step technique works wonders. That being said, we have listed some tips on how to keep your child calm and motionless while they eat without it degenerating into an all-out war.

    4 Tips to Help Your Toddler Sit & Eat

    Bring back the booster

    Children younger than 3 should be strapped into a booster seat or high chair as long as they still fit. This one is my fave. If you're searching for a more portable solution, this one is a great choice. Your best bet is to begin the meal while your child is strapped down since most toddlers lack the attention span or desire to stay still while eating for lengthy periods. You should always try to bring back booster seats even if you have to buy a new one if you have already left them behind. You may refer to it as a "big child chair" or remark, "You get to wear a seatbelt!" to make them thrilled.

    Ensure their feet are resting

    Having hanging feet might make your toddler feel imbalanced, which means they'll spend more time attempting to hold their body in an upright position and less time eating. A stool or chair may be placed under their feet if there isn't already a ledge on the seat. The wiggles will be much reduced due to this, as they will feel much more secure and in control. Having a smooth platform for your kid to lay their feet on while eating is one of the reasons I love this highchair and this one so much!

    Make them sit in the best possible position

    There's a good chance your toddler may not eat food at a proper height at your table. Children under the age of ten (or even older) seldom sit and eat meals at the correct height (most kids aged 3 to 9 need a booster seat and a stool under their feet). As a result, their chair starts to move, and eventually, they fall out of it. Imagine what it would be like to sit at an enormous table on a chair that left your feet hanging. It would be extremely uncomfortable!

    Give them a chance

    Ask yourself whether you've followed the previous advice and are still battling a child who won't sit still for meals.

    Exactly how long are you expecting them to sit at the table? Only around 10 to 20 minutes, four to six times a day is appropriate for toddlers (meals and scheduled snacks). For visual aid, I've included several sand timers below.

    Is there enough time for physical exercise and active play? You might expect your toddler to be restless after a lengthy vehicle journey or a long session in front of the television. Make sure they've had a chance to "get their sillies out" before inviting them to the table.

    Is this a way for them to be noticed? It's important to keep in mind that if your child refuses to eat or has difficulty sitting still at the table, they may be doing it to get your attention. To find out what's wrong, give them more attention to other aspects of their lives.

    Is this helpful?



    Medically Reviewed by

    Dt. Mansi Goyal

    Specializes in Critical Gestational Diabetes, PCOS Patients - BSC| MSC (Home Science, Food & Nutrition)

    View Profile

    Written by

    Loveleen Gupta

    A working mother with more than two decades of experience in writing for the publishing industry and digital space, Loveleen Gupta loves dabbling in creative writing also. A graduate from Miranda House, she uses her personal experiences to express herself.

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