top of page

Child Dysphagia Test

If your child experiences any one of the Red List symptoms, or one or more of the Black List symptoms below, you should consult with your medical professional and request a referral for a feeding and swallowing evaluation.


These symptoms indicate significant risks for aspiration, obstruction, malnutrition, and feeding problems that could impact your child’s growth – social and emotional development, physical development and overall health

Red List

Indicates significant risk for aspiration, obstruction and severe swallowing dysfunction

  • Choking, coughing, gagging, vomiting during feeding

  • Color changes: eyes water or turn red, color change to blue

  • “Sleep feed” or “dream feed” (when you put your baby to sleep or your baby falls asleep in order to feed easier)

  • Vomiting or reflux (especially during mealtime or observed pieces of food in vomit)

  • Traumatic choking incident

  • Stressful feeding, mealtime battles, child is difficult for everyone to feed, caregivers dread feeding time

  • Fear of swallowing

  • Identification of food in BM or vomit

Black List

Indicates significant risk for feeding disorder often accompanied by a swallowing disorder

  • Unable to transition to puree at 7 months

  • Continues to need baby food at 16 months

  • Does not consume most calories from table foods at 12 months

  • Consume more calories in liquids than solids at 12 months

  • Still dependent on bottle at 15 months

  • Does not eat more than 20 different foods at 12 months or 30 foods at 2 years

  • Avoids foods of specific texture, color or food group

  • Spits out food instead of swallowing

  • Over stuffs (places too much food in mouth and doesn’t clear mouth before adding more food)

  • Swallows food before completely chewing

If you have concerns, please ask your physician for a referral to evaluate your child’s feeding skills and behaviors. Early and effective intervention is key to successful eating skills and swallowing skills. Contact us or feel free to call with any questions at 727-217-5023.

bottom of page