feeding/hydrating/aspirations/advice

Discussion in 'End of life care' started by izzie, Feb 24, 2015.

  1. izzie

    izzie Registered User

    Jul 4, 2007
    28
    Hertfordshire
    Mum, 82, lives with us and has late stage alzheimers. How long she's got we don't know.

    Im struggling with feeding her. She is holding her food, not taking the food and/or falling quickly to sleep with food in her mouth.

    Hydrating is a bit easier, but I'm relentless in continuing to offer her fluids. She's stage one re thickener, has all the forticep/ensure supplements as directed by dietician and DNurses are telling me to feed/hydrate her when awake. Every half hour is different. Her condition is very variable.

    Has/is anyone going through the same? I feel I am going mad. Family say, 'feed her this, have you tried that?' I feel under enormous pressure he keep her fed and hydrated and sometimes I question if I am 'force feeding her' Bet that sounds awful!
     
  2. jaymor

    jaymor Volunteer Moderator

    Jul 14, 2006
    12,489
    Female
    England
    Hi,

    If your Mum is drinking better than eating then maybe she would tolerate home made soup. Meat and vegetables, pulses can all go into soup along with cream foe extra calories. If it is blended then it becomes a purée that can be taken through a lidded beaker as a drink. Fruit smoothie are good too. Any fruit can go in and blended with milk makes a great drink.

    My husband went onto pureed food at one stage and had lots of smoothies which he loves.
     
  3. WIFE

    WIFE Registered User

    May 23, 2014
    857
    WEST SUSSEX
    Hello Izzie - I totally agree with Jaymor - soup is very nourishing and lots of things can be added and then liquidized or sieved. I tried sieved rice pudding, jellies, custards, anything made with milk and egg like crème caramels and blancmange. My husband lived for a time on mashed potato and home-made gravy! Good luck.
     
  4. Jacquie1

    Jacquie1 Registered User

    Feb 27, 2015
    3
    This is a difficult time !

    :):)
     
  5. Jacquie1

    Jacquie1 Registered User

    Feb 27, 2015
    3
    Izzie, this is a tough, stressful time ! I say this from my working experience currently as a mental health nurse working with people experiencing advanced dementia. It's tough, as your Mum having a drink or some food can be variable and not always in keeping with what may have been her likes and dislikes. The skills you Mum uses on one occasion and then on another varies. Which means that you have to keep adapting and be creative in what you are doing. Often, I find you have a further difficulty in that preparing food and then your Mum declining or appearing disinterested in what you have prepared, can leave you feeling rejected. Not just the food ! I think we tend to forget or overlook that eating and drinking also have this emotional element to. I can clearly understand how it is to feel stressed in your own right let alone add to the mix the (well meaning ) judgements and advice from family. Keeping Mum hydrated is a huge task. I totally agree it can feel very psychologically uncomfortable maintaining hydration. I guess as you process how well or not you've done by the amount of food or fluid Mum takes that this affects your own "critical " thermometer !

    Sometimes it helps to have a speech and language assessment from a Speech Therapist. They can advise over seating positions, posture, " what to do if ", using a straw,or beakers, all sorts of things.

    Izzie,hope this might help ? Good luck !
    Jacquie,
     

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