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Q&A: Eating and Drinking - Thurs 30th August, 3-4 pm

Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by Mark_W, Aug 23, 2018.

  1. Mark_W

    Mark_W Volunteer Moderator

    Sep 28, 2015
    Eating and Drinking can become a difficult issue for people with dementia, and it can be a challenge to care for a person with dementia and ensure that they remain healthy.

    Vicky from our Helpline will be hand to answer your questions here in this thread next Thursday 30th August between 3-4 pm.

    You can either post questions here or email them to us at and we'll answer as many as we can on Thursday 30th of August.

  2. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    Is there any way to prevent fits of coughing and sneezing during or after eating and is there any known cause.

    Is there any connection with the above and aspiration pneumonia.
  3. Cazzita

    Cazzita Registered User

    May 12, 2018
    Hi. I have noticed that mum (81) coughs a lot straight after eating and not at other times so she doesn't have a cold. Is this part of bvtFTD? Thank you.
  4. AKiki13

    AKiki13 Registered User

    Jun 4, 2018
    Hi, my question is about the SALT team. They are there to provide a very vital service to struggling dementia patients and yet 2 months have passed and my poor grandmother has not been seen. The g.p first put her on a soft diet when the referral was first made middle of June and has now had to update this to puréed and still no visit! What can I do about hurrying this along? She is now struggling to swallow medication too but they’ve said it’ll be about 2 weeks from now. It’s not fair.
  5. Tammylan

    Tammylan New member

    Mar 31, 2018
    Mum keeps complaining of a "frog in her throat" and seems to constantly trying to clear it. She has no trouble eating or drinking. Diagnosed two years ago with vascular dementia. She also has underactive thyroid
  6. Kevinl

    Kevinl Registered User

    Aug 24, 2013
    Just to add on to this question, what can the SALT team actually do?
    Obviously Akiki thinks her grandmother is missing out by not seeing the SALT people but my wife's been seen by them twice and all they've ever done is the same as granny's GP, soft diet, then a pureed diet, thickened drinks and the like and as far as I can see all the people seen by them in the home get the same treatment.
    So my question is, is there actually do beyond these obvious steps, medication, treatment of some sort...basically anything more than the obvious?
    The GP has checked my wife for anything physical like tonsils (or whatever) and there's nothing physically wrong with her so what do the SALT team bring to the table (forgive the pun)?.
  7. brioni

    brioni Registered User

    Apr 19, 2017
    My wife is always looking for something to eat - she doesn't eat a lot but often; seems within an hour of breakfast she wants lunch, it drives me crazy! She has gained weight, but denies this. Is this simply an effect of Alzheimer's?
  8. Norfolk Cherry

    Norfolk Cherry Registered User

    Feb 17, 2018
    My mum lives alone but seems to forget to eat or drink? I ring her in the morning and have to tell her to make a cup of tea? She says she isn't hungry. Does anyone else have this? She has always "watched her weight" and basically dieted all her life, so I'm not sure if it's the vascular dementia or just her choice? I'm weighing her to see if she's losing weight.
  9. Elizabeth36

    Elizabeth36 New member

    Aug 26, 2018
    My Mum is in the later stages of dementia and has been on a pureed diet of late, but has now started to refuse, or maybe lost the ability to open her mouth. Trying to get anything into her is painstakingly slow... she has regular shots of 'procal', which obviously give her some nutrients, but I'm struggling at the mo... any help or suggestions welcome?
  10. At a distance

    At a distance Registered User

    Mar 10, 2014
    Hi Mark - sorry if I'm not posting as I should, I haven't used the forum previously. My mum has Parkinson's as well as dementia and I frequently find that she clamps her teeth together so that I can't get the spout of her drinking cup into her mouth or any food either. I was told it's a sort of primal reaction to not wanting to receive food and drink. Some days she has such a low amount of fluids. Any thoughts on how to encourage her to open her mouth would be very gratefully received. We try things like giving her fluids via ice cream but could really do with having a breakthrough on the closed teeth issue. Many thanks
  11. Charie1

    Charie1 Registered User

    Aug 5, 2018
    Mum still lives on her own and seems fine making simple things like breakfast and sandwiches etc but cannot cook a hot meal. She finds the cooker and cooking instructions too difficult to follow.Any recommendations for services that deliver hot meals? If we can get her to agree to them !!
  12. Norfolk Cherry

    Norfolk Cherry Registered User

    Feb 17, 2018
    @Charie1 The same thing happened to my mum in the early stages. It was one of the reasons I asked for a care needs assessment from Social Services. They created a care package of three visits a day as well as respite care. The carers give meds , prepare microwaved meals and make sandwiches and drinks. (She was also unable to tell them what she would do if she was ill, as she didn't know how to ask for help)
  13. mrs-o

    mrs-o Registered User

    Nov 29, 2012
    My husband constantly complains that his food is either too sweet or too salty even though I no longer use any seasoning in his food and he no longer eats desserts. It's a constant battle to get him to drink fluids, half an inch of a small cup of tea is a result.
  14. TAP

    TAP Registered User

    Jul 23, 2015
    How to deal with swallowing tablets and drinking. Clearly need to drink to swallow tablets. Dad can drink (with thickening powder/fluid in his drinks) and can eat soft food but Dad can no longer do the two together with regard taking tablets. It has been like that now for about the last 2 weeks - although saying that he did manage to swallow two this morning OK. Most of the time we just crush them but dont have dr approval and know the tablets are not licenced in that form but it is either crush them or Dad doesn't take them at all. Any suggestions apart from speaking with the GP (unfortunately our GP not very good!).
  15. Midow

    Midow Registered User

    Jun 13, 2017
    My problem is the opposite of what most people seem to have, I can't stop my husband eating. Straight after a large meal he's asking if there's anything to eat. I tell him he's just eaten his dinner and he insists he's had nothing to eat. Even showing him his empty plate doesn't work. This has been going on for almost 3 months. Our GP has had blood tests done and everything is ok. She thinks he is just forgetting that he's eaten and suggested I write everything he's eaten down so he can read it. I've tried doing that but he still hunts for food. He's driving me mad looking for food all day, all the kitchen cupboards opening and shutting continuously I've even found him eating stock cubes!
    He is 81 and was diagnosed 6 years ago with Alzheimer's/mixed but has never had a scan.
  16. Novice

    Novice Registered User

    May 8, 2017
    I will try and be brief. Mum is a relatively active 90 year old; fortunately the Alzheimer’s has only effected her memory, in everything, but not her body. Until fairly recently she was able to feed herself, but since she has been unsure what to do with her food smearing it over the table, we have taken to feeding her if she will open her mouth. Here in lies the problem. ‘At a Distance’ seems to have the same problem. Other ‘posters’ have suggested tapping her bottom lip which occasionally works but then she bites the spoon and will not let go! She will only eat soft food - meat, fish and bread end up as balls in her mouth and she just keeps chewing. Swallowing is not a problem at the moment, but we are ending up pureeing food just to get something inside her. She will drink smoothies and milk shakes and the doctor has also prescribed shakes. We have tried having quiet mealtimes, mealtimes with classic FM and mealtimes with TV to distract Mum from the actual eating. Is there anything else I can do, because meal times are becoming time consuming (2 hrs) and stressful for everyone!!! I have tried the ‘little and often approach’, but the day becomes one long round of eating – even the little can take more than an hour!
  17. Brid John

    Brid John Registered User

    May 23, 2017
    My wife is 79 and was diagnosed with alzheimer's in 2015, she had problems eating for nearly 2 years. She will only take liquids so I give her Complan morning and evening and try to get her to have soup at lunch time, this usual takes a lot of persuasion. If we go out for a meal with a friend all she wants is a cup of tea. She used to have a chip but now refuses to eat any solid food. I always feel that she needs more, but her weight is at an acceptable level.
  18. loona

    loona Registered User

    Dec 19, 2016
    My OH was diagnosed with mixed dementia in August 2015. He was eating well in the beginning then stopped eating his favourite foods. Next step was only eating potatoes & vegetables. This progressed to just potatoes & carrots, then just potatoes. Now it is maybe a few mouthfuls of potatoes. Last few days he has only eaten his breakfast & a snack at lunchtime. He does occasionally have coughing fits & overfill his mouth. He will drink tea & coffee but not in enough quantity. He has had protein drinks from the GP but will not always drink them. No matter what I give him he looks at it as if I'm trying to poison him. What can you suggest? He is aware of the fact that he is not in control of things any longer & I wondered if this could be him trying to maintain control of at least one thing.
  19. Mark_W

    Mark_W Volunteer Moderator

    Sep 28, 2015
    Thanks everyone for your questions so far, just a reminder that we'll be starting the Q&A in just over an hour at 3pm.
  20. Mark_W

    Mark_W Volunteer Moderator

    Sep 28, 2015
    Welcome everyone to our Q&A on eating and drinking this afternoon, we're about to get started but first let me welcome @Vicky.H from our helpline, who will be answering your questions today.
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