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mum puts everything into her mouth

Discussion in 'Middle - later stages of dementia' started by ignis, Jan 27, 2016.

  1. ignis

    ignis Registered User

    Feb 12, 2013
    21
    Fife
    my mum likes to suck her finger, she sucks on the straw when her drink is finished, she puts almost everything possible into her mouth. Has anyone else had experience of this? Is there anything out there that I can buy that she can safely put into her mouth?

    When we were holding hands last night she was trying to put my hand in her mouth! We were rummaging through ribbon on Monday and that too went into her mouth.

    Any suggestions, guidance, advice gratefully received. :)
     
  2. 2jays

    2jays Registered User

    Jun 4, 2010
    11,490
    West Midlands
    Hi

    You may not like my suggestion....

    I got my mum some teething rings, soft baby toys, anything that my young grandchild would also use when they were teething.

    It doesn't feel right to see her with them, but she "enjoys" them




    Sent from my iPhone using Talking Point
     
  3. fizzie

    fizzie Registered User

    Jul 20, 2011
    2,740
    Hi there
    The first thing that comes to mind is that she might be in pain. Children show that behaviour when they have oral discomfort - any pressure or movement in the mouth helps to relieve the pain and so it would really be worth getting it checked out.
     
  4. fizzie

    fizzie Registered User

    Jul 20, 2011
    2,740
    meanwhile give her some paracetamol at regular intervals just for a couple of days and see if the behaviour reduces - just a thought
     
  5. ignis

    ignis Registered User

    Feb 12, 2013
    21
    Fife
    thanks

    I've already been having a look at teething type things and am glad that you're suggesting this. I am open to trying anything that makes her more comfortable and if she enjoys teething gadgets then that's fine.

    A wonderful website called the sensory warehouse has loads and loads of things suitable so I'll definitely get her one now. thanks very much.
     
  6. ignis

    ignis Registered User

    Feb 12, 2013
    21
    Fife

    Thank you for the reply...
    I did wonder if she might be in pain. she smiles all the time and it's really hard to tell weather or not she has pain - usually just by her facial expressions - but she seems very content when she is sucking hard on her finger so it might be a comfort thing. Equally it could also just be another "stage" I suppose. I'll pay more attention to her when she is doing this and see if there is a change to her expression. Mum only had two wee tiny brown peg-like teeth left at the bottom and neither of them look too stable so it is certainly possible that they could be causing her problems. The dentist makes 6 monthly visits so I think I'll find out when they're next due and get her teeth checked.
     
  7. Amy in the US

    Amy in the US Registered User

    Feb 28, 2015
    4,624
    USA
    Hi, ignis. While I don't have personal experience of this, I have heard a couple of people at one of my support groups mention that their family members with dementia do this. I am not certain, but suspect it's part of the progression of the disease.

    I do think it's worth making sure there isn't any sort of problem or pain.

    I tried to see if I could find anything on the Alzheimer's Society website about this, but so far all I've got is dental care and oral health, which isn't quite what you're after, but I will post a link anyway. https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/site/scripts/documents_info.php?documentID=138

    Also these past threads: http://forum.alzheimers.org.uk/showthread.php?30034-Putting-things-in-his-mouth

    http://forum.alzheimers.org.uk/showthread.php?82173-Putting-everything-in-her-mouth

    http://forum.alzheimers.org.uk/showthread.php?80451-Chewing-anything-and-everything

    Not so much because there are answers there, but more to let you know you're not alone.
     
  8. Witzend

    Witzend Registered User

    Aug 29, 2007
    4,282
    SW London
    My mother did this too, and like yours, tried to put my fingers in her mouth when I was holding her hand.

    It's just occurred to me that the rubber giraffes (Sophie Giraffe, I think they're French) which are very popular for babies at the everything-in-the-mouth stage, might be good - nice to hold, too.
    Incidentally I bought one in America for a niece's baby - it was about three times the price of one I'd bought in France - in a supermarket - for my granddaughter!
     
  9. Ash148

    Ash148 Registered User

    Jan 1, 2014
    276
    Dublin, Ireland
    My mum does this too. She has a Butrans patch to prevent pain (as she has osteoporosis and could not be able to communicate pain if it was causing problems). Because she has lost so much weight (14 stone to 7 in less than a year), we replace whatever object she wants to put into her mouth with a piece of chocolate or fruit. I would definitely try whatever you think will work and not worry about whether anyone else will think it appropriate. For a while, mum had a baby doll that gave her a lot of comfort; it sometimes caused raised eyebrows with visitors but I didn't care.
     
  10. ignis

    ignis Registered User

    Feb 12, 2013
    21
    Fife
    Thank you - so appreciate this. it's good to know that others have been there before me. I find the behaviour cute and quite fascinating. Mum was "sooking" very loudly on the edge of her "pinny" (Scottish for apron) tonight. She had it soaking wet. We were skyping my son who is in Vietnam and he could hear the noises too! I made us all smile. I'm so glad that we can see the cuteness in it otherwise it would be distressing.
     
  11. ignis

    ignis Registered User

    Feb 12, 2013
    21
    Fife
    That's a lot of weight for your mum too lose. I do hope it has settled a bit now. How old is she and how long since she was diagnosed? My mum has also been loosing weight, but not as much as your mum though, so replacing sucking things with chocolate is a great idea - she especially loves After Eights!
    My mum had a therapy doll too that she loved to hold - and it did take some people a wee while to get over it but they eventually accepted it.
    i don't think my mum is in pain; she seems really contented when she is sucking on something and as some others have said I realise now that it is probably another stage and a comfort thing too so I'll just have to find nice safe items for her to put into her mouth. :)
     
  12. CJinUSA

    CJinUSA Registered User

    Jan 20, 2014
    1,127
    eastern USA
    So grateful that you asked this question. My mother has been putting her fingers into her mouth for awhile now, usually while napping or in the space between sleeping and being awake. It's a little eerie watching her lift her finger to her mouth and gum (if no teeth) or bite the finger.
     
  13. Ash148

    Ash148 Registered User

    Jan 1, 2014
    276
    Dublin, Ireland
    #13 Ash148, Feb 3, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2016
    Mum is 77 and was diagnosed only two years ago but her decline has been super steep. Her weight has stabilised in the last few months thank goodness but she is a little bird compared to what she was before. Dad brings ice cream and strawberries or raspberries to the nursing home for her every single day and adds spoonfuls of sugar to the ice cream. Mum's favourite chocolates are the Lindor ones: Swiss chocolate and very calorific. I brought six bags when I visited two weeks ago and saw that they were all gone on Sunday. I had to ask my sister if they had been deemed unsuitable and taken away but no they had all been eaten, so I need to bring a fresh supply this weekend.

    One thing that's hard for dad is that he has had to stop bringing mum flowers - either roses from their garden or her favourite white lilies - as those go into her mouth too (or sometimes get flung across the room, vase and all, if things are not going to mum's liking).
     
  14. Aisling

    Aisling Registered User

    Dec 5, 2015
    1,807
    Ireland
    Hi Ash,

    Have been thinking about you. Hope you doing ok. I like chocolate too.

    Aisling
     

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