Your child will be put into a special chair that will adjust to a similar position he / she normally eats or drinks in at home (i.e., sitting, lying). Your child's food will be mixed with a liquid called barium. It is necessary to mix the barium with the food or liquid so that it will highlight your child's throat on the X-rays.
A parent or family member may be asked to feed your child the barium-prepared items so that your child is more comfortable during the test. A therapist will be there during the test. The therapist may ask your child to change position or to try different textured foods / liquids to help find the safest and best way for your child to eat.
This test does not hurt, but your child may dislike the taste of the food or liquid. You are encouraged to stay with your child during the test. Children are often more cooperative and less apprehensive when a loved one is with them. If you are pregnant, you will have to leave the room during the pictures. It is helpful to have another caregiver watch the child's siblings so you can be with your child.
The test usually takes about 30-45 minutes.