1. Expert Q&A: Protecting a person with dementia from financial abuse - Weds 26 June, 3:30-4:30 pm

    Financial abuse can have serious consequences for a person with dementia. Find out how to protect a person with dementia from financial abuse.

    Sam, our Knowledge Officer (Legal and Welfare Rights) is our expert on this topic. She will be here to answer your questions on Wednesday 26 June between 3:30 - 4:30 pm.

    You can either post questions >here< or email them to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll answer as many as we can on the day.

  1. SteveH

    SteveH Registered User

    Jun 10, 2005
    7
    Bideford, North Devon
    Im new to this forum, im looking for help, my mother has alzheimers, the problem is that she will not eat, no matter what we give her she just play's with it, we have her on vitamin drinks, but she has lost so much weight she is now only 6 stone, can anyone give me some pointers as what we can do to make her eat, Doctor's just say it's part of the condition.
     
  2. daughter

    daughter Registered User

    Mar 16, 2005
    824
    Hi Steve,

    My Dad does the same but only with certain foods. When he is given sandwiches, he lines them up neatly and doesn't appear to know what to do with them, it's like he has forgotten - I guess he has. He's ok with other food but did go through a phase of not eating very well until he was prescribed something for depression.

    I imagine you have tried all different foods and can only suggest you might try 'fun foods' (strips of raw carrot, cheese, cooked chicken etc) that are also good for your Mum and hope that, after playing, she'll eventually try eating them! If she's ok with drinks maybe you could try millkshakes, hot chocolate and fruit juices, at least she will be getting some nourishment that way. I expect someone here will point you in the direction of a fact sheet and have more ideas.

    Best wishes,
     
  3. Norman

    Norman Registered User

    Oct 9, 2003
    4,348
    Birmingham Hades
    Hi Steve and welcome to talking point.
    My wife went through a no eating period,the Dr gave her an appetite stimulant and assured me that she would eat when she was ready.
    She did.
    There are food supplements available,they are on prescription,so you would need to sound out the Dr about prescribing them for Mum.
    There is a fact sheet availabl on eating.
    Go to top left hand corner of this page and click on "Factsheets"
    the one that may help is No511.
    Hope this helps
    Regards
    Norman
     
  4. SteveH

    SteveH Registered User

    Jun 10, 2005
    7
    Bideford, North Devon
    Thanks

    Hi Hazel
    Thank you for the reply, I will try what you suggest, I think mum is now in the third stage, she has trouble drinking juice and water, someone suggest I try things like milkshake something thicker, yesterday was the first time she did not know who I was, that was a shock.

    Thanks again

    Steve
     
  5. SteveH

    SteveH Registered User

    Jun 10, 2005
    7
    Bideford, North Devon
    Thanks

    Thankyou for the reply Norman

    We will try what you suggest, the Doctor has not suggested anything, but will try again.

    many thanks

    Steve
     
  6. daughter

    daughter Registered User

    Mar 16, 2005
    824
    Hi Steve,

    Yes, even after having some knowledge of what's ahead, each new thing that happens it still a bit of a shock. Knowing who I am seems to come and go with Dad at the moment but when he occasionally calls me by my old knickname it catches me (pleasantly) unaware! :)

    PS Don't forget to vote in the 'relation poll' - it's in need of some more caring sons like you!

    http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/talkingpoint/discuss/showthread.php?t=1619

    Take care,
     
  7. Jude

    Jude Registered User

    Hi Steve,

    Eating can be a problem at times and it seems to come and go. My mother became very uninterested in eating for a time and lost a lot of weight too. She's eating well again now fortunately. It seems that AD can create a constriction in the swallowing mechanism in the throat which means that many people become lazy about eating.

    Finger foods are a great idea, especially with a lot of colour. Food needs to be soft, easy to chew and swallow. The food also needs to be cut up into small pieces. It usually takes about half an hour per meal because people get easily distracted and forget what they are doing, so some supervision might be necessary until your mum starts eating again.

    There has also been some research into the colour of crockery. For some reason, AD sufferers seem more interested in food which is served on plates which are yellow, blue or red. I bought blue and yellow ones for my parents and their food intake did increase quite dramatically.

    Also - don't forget the water. Really important to keep up the fluids to prevent urinary tract infections and constipation. I found that Syrup of Figs was far better than Lactulose.

    Hope this helps.

    Jude
     
  8. Sandy

    Sandy Registered User

    Mar 23, 2005
    6,847
    Hi Steve,

    Welcome to Talking Point.

    There is a very good web page that describes eating/swallowing difficulties in people with dementia which has been written by a speech and language therapist. You can find it here:

    Swallowing problems for those with dementia

    The Alzheimer's Society also has a fact sheet on eating and nutrition that includes a section on poor appetite and difficulties swallowing. You can find it here:

    Fact sheet on eating and nutrition

    Their recommendation for swallowing difficulties is to get the advice of a speech and language therapist.

    Hope this is helpful in some way.

    Take care,

    Sandy
     
  9. SteveH

    SteveH Registered User

    Jun 10, 2005
    7
    Bideford, North Devon
    Thanks

    Hi Jude

    Thankyou for the info, we will try the colour idea, mother now weighs 5st 9lb she used to be 10st. Once again many thanks

    Steve
     
  10. SteveH

    SteveH Registered User

    Jun 10, 2005
    7
    Bideford, North Devon
    Thank you

    Hi Sandy

    Once again thank you, I have printed off the links you sent me, im sure they will help.

    Thanks again

    Steve
     
  11. SteveH

    SteveH Registered User

    Jun 10, 2005
    7
    Bideford, North Devon
    Vote

    Hi Hazell

    I have voted as requested, thanks for everything

    Steve
     
  12. Robert

    Robert Registered User

    Feb 25, 2005
    44
    Hello Steve,

    I read your post ref your Mother's reluctance to eat and Sandy's reply indiacting relevent links.

    Since my wife has the same problem, I also checked out the links, which amongst other ideas suggested alternating spoons of food with small sips of drink. After weeks of a poor appetite, I tried the alternating technique with my wife's evening meal today and was amazed at the improvement

    It is only one success but it worked wonders for my frustation. If you happen to try the same method, I hope it helps your Mum too.

    Best wishes,

    Robert.
     
  13. Sandy

    Sandy Registered User

    Mar 23, 2005
    6,847
    Hi Robert,

    I'm so glad to hear that one of the techniques worked for you and your wife. That type of good news makes my day! :)

    I had such sympathy with Steve's comment in his original post that "Doctor's just say it's part of the condition." Exchanging information on this forum and using the resources available on the internet shows that there are definitely means and methods to maintain someone's quality of life even when they are affected by demetnia.

    Thanks for the comment on the CarChair also and yes, please do let us know how you get on.

    Take care,

    Sandy
     
  14. alaneg

    alaneg Registered User

    May 2, 2005
    13
    Wirral UK
    Hi Steve
    I've been through this problem with my father refusing to eat. The doctor has now prescribed Fortisip drinks. These are like a sweet milk shake and come in various flavours. After Dad had got used to them, which took a couple of days, he started to really enjoy them. He takes 3 x 200ml bottles a day and according to the bottle they are suitable as a sole source of nutritian. Since he has been taking these it has removed a lot of worry as even when he was eating a bit I was always concerned that he was not eating the right things and maybe not getting all the correct vitamins etc.
    Hope this helps and nice to meet another son carer!
     
  15. SteveH

    SteveH Registered User

    Jun 10, 2005
    7
    Bideford, North Devon
    Thank you all

    Thank you all for your replies and help, at this time my mother is sleeping so much and will no longer eat, Im afraid that she is now fading, so hard to watch, she is no longer mum, I feel it is now just a matter of days before she leaves us :( , it will be such sad day for us all, but a release for her, she has gone down hill so fast this last month since her last fall, she has been bed ridden since then.

    Once again many thanks to you all, I shall call in time to time,

    Steve
     
  16. daughter

    daughter Registered User

    Mar 16, 2005
    824
    Hi Steve,

    I was so sorry to read your sad news. I'm afraid I didn't realise exactly how ill your Mum had become when I last posted. Thinking of you,
     
  17. Jude

    Jude Registered User

    Dear Steve,

    I was very sad to read your post. My thoughts are with you too.

    Jude
     
  18. Norman

    Norman Registered User

    Oct 9, 2003
    4,348
    Birmingham Hades
    Hi Steve
    sorry to hear of Mum's decline.
    My thoughts are with you
    Norman
     
  19. connie

    connie Registered User

    Mar 7, 2004
    9,519
    Frinton-on-Sea
    Steve, so sorry to read your news. My prayers are with you and mum. Connie
     

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