Drinking & U T I 's ?

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by grove, Feb 17, 2014.

  1. grove

    grove Registered User

    Aug 24, 2010
    North Yorkshire
    Hello Everybody , My Father has moderate Dementia & lives at Home with Mum , I live near them & visit them at once a week . For quite a few months now Mum will remark to me that Dad is not drinking enough & I have noticed it also ( part of the reason I expect is used to be a Kitchen Asst in a C H & used to do the * Drinks * round mid - morning & mid - afternoon ) Dad will normally say * yes * to a drink when asked either Coffee or Tea but some times unless he is gently prompted he will *forget* about it or only drink half etc Mum all ways has lots of regular drinks through out the day plus with a meal also .............My question / worry is with Dad only drinking half cup will that make him more prone to a UTI ? Sorry to ask a silly question like that but from working in the C H I know not drinking enough can be a factor ? in having a UTI & I know you should not compare other people 's dementia etc & also know its part of Dad's dementia making him like this , but guess just wanted to be reassured by other 's on T P please & sorry for the long ramble ! ( as far as I am aware Dad has never had a U T I & expect am worrying about nothing !)

    Thank you for your help

    Grove x x
  2. Emski88

    Emski88 Registered User

    Dec 18, 2011
    Hi u must push fluids as this is the problem I have with my grandma and grandad they both have different types of dementia and I have been caring for them for 8 years, a uti can cause more confusion as I have experienced with my grandad he gets in a real state really confused and agitated this mixed with the dementia is a horrible time so try to push as many fluids as possible especially water and give him a Low sugar cranberry juice drink as this helps
    To flush out the system and prevents uti's! Hope this helps :)
  3. cragmaid

    cragmaid Registered User

    Oct 18, 2010
    North East England
    Hiya Grove......my Mum is just the same...a mouthful here and there....poor soul she has two reasons, Dementia and Blindness, so that she forgets a drink is there and doesn't see it to prompt her. I think that a lack of fluid can cause a stronger urine which then can lead to an irritation in the bladder, and possibly a UTI and dehydration can also contribute to confusion. All I can do with Mum is to keep prompting her when I am with her and hope that the carers at the home have time to do the same.

    Have a good day, Grove
    Love Maureen.x.
  4. Izzy

    Izzy Volunteer Moderator

    Aug 31, 2003
    I agree that you need to 'push' fluids with your dad. We're always told that by the GP etc when Bill has one of his many UTIs. We were also told that when he was suffering from severe constipation. I think it's 6 or 8 glasses of fluid a day. Somebody here will know the correct amount! I'm lucky in that I have no problem in getting Bill to drink this.
  5. bilslin

    bilslin Registered User

    Jan 17, 2014
    My mum only drinks half a cup of tea/coffee when she's given one. Wondered if in the back of her head somewhere if she don't drink so much she may not wee so much or is she just forgetting to drink ??
  6. grove

    grove Registered User

    Aug 24, 2010
    North Yorkshire
    Thank you Izzy & Cragmaid for your replies very helpful

    Izzy ......... In one one of my posh ladies Magazines it said 8 big glasses every day ........... which I think = 1 big bottle of water ? ( I know cos I tried it once )

    Problem is tho however much Mum & I encourage & prompt Dad it some times makes him take notice & other times not & of course as we all know on T P we can not come across in a * hard way * with our loved ones can we ? All Mum & I can do is keep on prompting Dad & like I said before Mum all ways has lots of regular drinks thru out the day & yes will try & push him to drink more !

    Grove x x
  7. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    North Manchester
    Six glasses a day (~1.2l) is regarded as a minimum, it also depends on the room temperature, whether the person is perspiring and what type of food is being eaten.

    Appreciation of taste changes and SALT told me that the sweet taste was usually the last taste to go and that taste was one of the things that promotes swallowing. Irrespective of that try a selection of soft drinks of various sweetness, cranberry, lemon, apple, orange, orange and mango,...some of these may be more acceptable than tea or coffee. You could also try flavoured milk and maybe plain water.
  8. angelface

    angelface Registered User

    Oct 8, 2011
    Could you also try 'watery' type food more? You know, soup, ice cream, custard, melon, and so on.

    Certainly my aunt is very prone to UTIs, as soon as her not drinking much phases come along, so does a UTI :(
  9. Katrine

    Katrine Registered User

    Jan 20, 2011
    #9 Katrine, Feb 17, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2014
    Cranberry and Warfarin

    Just a reminder not to use cranberries or cranberry juice if someone takes Warfarin because it magnifies the blood thinning effects of the drug.
  10. loveahug

    loveahug Registered User

    Nov 28, 2012
    Moved to Leicester
    Dad only ever drank a half cup or mug or glass of anything (apart from beer or whisky!) and he didn't have dementia, the thing was if he had a full mug in front of him he would drink half of it, so he just ended up with drinks more often to ensure he got the same. If he noticed he certainly never said anything, I think it was more a sense of having control over something.

    Best wishes x
  11. Roma

    Roma Registered User

    Jan 15, 2008

    My mother in law has the same problem. She doesn't drink enough and is always complaining of wanting to go to the toilet to pee. Occasionally she does have a UTI, but most of the time her urine sample is negative and it is just the lack of fluid that is irritating her bladder. Of course this is a Catch 22 situation because she doesn't want to drink because she says that will make her want to go to the toilet, but of course if she doesn't drink enough then her bladder becomes irritated and she feels the need to go to the toilet all the time.

    Of course it's difficult for a person with dementia to understand this. Her doctor has given her a bladder antispasmodic to relax the bladder which has helped but she still from time to time has an irritable bladder from lack of fluids.

  12. Wildflower

    Wildflower Registered User

    Apr 6, 2013
    Hi grove - The continence nurse advised me that a person should drink at least 1.5 litres a day, depending on their weight. This is about 5 mugs and is enough for a 7-8 stone person. These are the amounts for heavier weights: 9 stones =6 mugs. 10 stones =7 mugs. 11 stones =7-8 mugs. 12 stones =8 mugs. 13 stones =9 mugs. 14 stones =10 mugs. 15 stones =10-11mugs. 16 stones =11mugs.
  13. Nebiroth

    Nebiroth Registered User

    Aug 20, 2006
    Having sufficient fluids helps to prevent UTI's because it means the urinary system is regularly flushed out - this helps to literally wash away bacteria in the same way flushing a toilet keeps it clean. Moreover, it means that urine is not retained so long so it does not become stale, also the urine is much less concentrated which is beneficial to the health of the bladder. Plenty of fluids similarly helps to keep the kidneys well flushed and clean, also helps to prevent kidney stones forming.

    The benefits of sufficient hydration are many and go beyond preventing UTI's. Urine should be a pale straw colour - and darker than this, it is a sign the body is not getting enough water and is thus concentrating urine to reduce water loss. Urine is naturally darker first thing in the morning, as the kidneys reduce volume production and increase concentration as wel sleep so we don;t have to wake up every two hours to go to the loo. Some medications also darken urine. This should be taken into account.

    Excess water is simply excreted, so too much is far less of a problem than too little (although water poisoning is possible, it requires massive intakes, on the order of multiple litres in one go)

    The body does not care what form the water takes coming in, so it can be plain water, juices, squash, tea, coffee etc (caffeine has a very, very mild diuretic effect but this is more than compensated for by the amount of water in beverages containing it). Also, water is extracted from food - if someone is reluctant to drink then they may be persuaded to eat foods with a very high water content (jelly, for example, is almost all water)

    Lastly, note that men, due to their anatomical construction, are much less likely to get UTI's than women. In essence, there is a much longer passage between the bladder and the exit, and it is far more difficult for bacteria to make the longer journey before setting up a bladder infection.

    This is not to say men can't get UTI's. It;s just much less likely. Usually, a man with repeated UTI's will be checked for possible underlying causes (often prostate problems) - whereas in women, UTI's are accepted as routine and are regarded as a product of the female anatomy.
  14. grove

    grove Registered User

    Aug 24, 2010
    North Yorkshire
    A big thank you ............

    To all the 12 T P 'ers who so kindly :) posted lots of helpful replies & *Deep Down * ( in my brain ) I did know that Dad should be drinking a lot more than he is , so am very grateful for all your replies especially Nebiroth who gave me the correct amount of fluids that we all need & have made a note of that & see how many small Cups it = 's ( 1.5 Litres )

    Thanks once again & will try & make sure Dad is drinking more plus have a word with Mum & point out the dangers of U T I 's etc

    Grove x x
  15. Wildflower

    Wildflower Registered User

    Apr 6, 2013
    My dad has had kidney stones in the past, and he also has chronic kidney disease. In the last few months he has become compliant with drinking fluid, and it's been quite easy to get him to drink up to 2 litres a day. Blood tests have shown that this has significantly improved his kidney function. It's easier said than done though if you are trying to get someone to drink and they just don't want to.
  16. Cfduti

    Cfduti Registered User

    May 13, 2013
    Apparently pure water is not absorbed as easily as water that has some 'impurities' in it. IOW a glass of filtered water will be more easily absorbed in the intestines if there is something like fine fibres, like from freshly squeezed fruit, for example, in it, rather than just plain water.
  17. Sunny7

    Sunny7 Registered User

    Nov 28, 2013
    West Sussex
    I am a newbie here.. not a newbie to a parent with dementia though (sadly) .. I saw your post about your mother having dementia and being blind. My mother is totally blind now and also is extremely hard of hearing which adds to the frustrations on both sides.. I have terrible problems getting my mum to drink enough.. She is convinced she lives in the toilet during the day .. whereas the reality is far different. Even though she lives with me and I try to push fluids as much as possible to prevent UTI's and general dehydration I am met with point blank refusal and then she gets very agitated if I make her have one and cries. Her last drink was at 8pm tonight (its 10.30 now and bedtime for her ) but she will wake several times during the night to be taken to the loo where she does a mere trickle.. I am at my wits end with knowing what to do for the best with her now with the drinking aspect and the waking at night too.. I have been told she needs to drink 2 litres a day! NO WAY will she accept that. I have tried all manner of ways to get her to drink more. As your mum is in a home though as you say, you hope that they are encouraging her to drink more. She had a bad UTI last weekend and was really confused this time with it, I had not been able to get the antibiotics until earlier that day so she had not had enough of them to help her.. I have asked my GP now for a few prescriptions so that I can always have some ready for her in the event it happens when the surgery is closed.

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