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Pica

Treatments

Overcorrection Procedure

Treatment Summary: Overcorrection procedures are applied to teach correct behavior through exaggerated practices which includes oral hygiene, personal hygiene and tidying. Oral hygiene, personal hygiene and tidying are used in an alternating form. Individuals are requested to brush their teeth with a toothbrush soaked in a slightly distasteful solution, such as lemon juice or hot sauce. Individuals are made to wash their hands, face and anus, along with being asked to pick up their living area and empty their trash. A damp washcloth soaked in unpleasant solutions was also used to wash their lips and mouth for the overcorrecting process.

  • Reference: Bell, K. E., & Stein, D. M. (1992). Behavioral treatment for Pica: a review of empirical studies. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 11 (4), 377-389
  • Submitter: Valerie Parker

Response Blocking, Redirection, and Differential Reinforcement

Treatment Summary: After determining the non-nutritive item that is being consumed, the same item is then placed on the floor in a room along with nutritive foods, games, and various activities. The child is instructed not to eat the non-nutritive items and instead eat the food, play the games and engage in the activities. If the child reaches for the Pica item (the process of eating a non-nutritive substance like cigarette butts), they are given a verbal reprimand not to do so and be physically aided to prevent the Pica event. Within the room a colored card is emplaced to associate the card with the correct behaviors. After conditioning, the colored card is given to the child without response blocking reprimands.

  • Reference: Stiegler, Lillian N., (2005). Understanding pica behavior: a review for clinical and education professionals. Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, 20(1), 33.
  • Submitter: Michæl McDonald

 

Treatment Summary: Patients that are eating non-nourishment foods, need to have it replaced with normal foods. But in order for them to have that success a patient would have to be placed in a hospital setting and showed that there are foods that are good for them. Also keeping them a routine, also helps them to eat the right things.

  • Reference: Rapp, J., Dozier, C., & Carr, J. (2001). Functional assessment and treatment of pica: A single-case experiment. Behavioral Interventions 16, 111-124. DOI:10.1002/bin.79
  • Submitter: Korene T. Larkin