The purpose of this study was to establish an assessment method for evaluation of hand and mouth coordination during self-feeding. The subjects were four normally developed infants. Their feeding behavior was videotaped at two or four week intervals (from age eight months to thirty-six months). The items analyzed were nine viewpoints for finger feeding and eight viewpoints for spoon-feeding. The results obtained included: finger feeding - development of cylinder and pinch grasp, two patterns of hand in relation to neck and trunk, placement of food into the mouth, developmental aspects of neck rotation when taking food with the lips; spoon feeding - holding technique, flexion of elbow and shoulder, taking food from the spoon bowl by the lips, patterns of neck rotation. From the results of these observations, we conclude that the items analyzed in this study can be useful for the assessment of the developmental process of hand and mouth coordination in self-feeding.


feeding functions, hand to mouth coordination, early childhood, orofacial myology