As Belle gets to be 9 months old, we are seeing progress in her therapy. She is getting more accustomed to her Oral Placement Therapy (OPT) and has even tried to help during the chomping exercises. She still fights me just a little, but we get right back on track and continue right along. She is growing up so fast and we can see the progress she is making. Plus she continues to smile and laugh, which tells me that she loves her therapy too.

The progress that Belle is showing during her feedings is very heartwarming. She loves the fruit we introduced this month and begs for more. I had to keep up with her eating. Feeding her a little quicker helps her learn to swallow her food faster instead of holding it in her mouth. This makes her Dad and I very happy to see how well she is eating and swallowing. She is enjoying eating and is getting better by the day.  And because she has been showing such great progress, we introduced puffs this month. We can tell she wasn’t exactly sure what to do with the puffs. I placed it to the back of her jaw on her molars to show her she is supposed to chomp them just like she does with the many tools, such as the ToothetteFinger Cuff and Yellow Chewy Tube, we use during her therapy. I think she was getting the hang of it. I was a little unsure if that was the right thing to do. But after some feedback from our TalkTools Therapist, Whitney, we learned that Belle is doing exactly with what we want her to do. The next step is to introduce veggie sticks or strips of waffles and pancakes for me to hold while she does her chomping, chewing and swallowing.

-Lanie Beetsma

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