Grief in the transition from oral to enteral feeding among children
Intended for healthcare professionals
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Grief in the transition from oral to enteral feeding among children

Gillian Hebblewhite Second-year learning disability nursing student, University of Hull

Recognition of the challenges linked to non-death loss can help young people deal with future bereavements and improve communication, says Gillian Hebblewhite

Loss of oral feeding may lead to grief that is unrecognised and unsupported, particularly in the presence of learning disabilities. This can evoke resentment and abnormal grieving responses or challenging behaviour. The child in transition from oral to enteral feeding and the family and/or carers should be assisted through all the stages of mourning for this lost activity to final adjustment and acceptance. It is particularly important for children with learning disabilities to know that they as people have a heritage and a history, and learn how to communicate their feelings and cope adequately with future transitions and bereavements.

Learning Disability Practice. 15, 10, 12-16. doi: 10.7748/ldp2012.


Peer review

This article has been subject to double blind peer review

Conflict of interest

None declared

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