Your memory-impaired loved one has food prep and eating issues. Here are some common problems.
The School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Madison-Wisconsin, has a fabulous website with great fact sheets for those who need possible solutions when managing a dementia charge. Here are some scenarios for food dilemmas, such as what to do when mom won’t eat, and possible suggestions:
Forgets to eat or drink fluids.
Remind them with telephone calls, alarms, or notes.
Leaves food to burn on the stove.
Unplug stove and/or oven. Use the microwave oven. Have meals brought to the home. Eat meals at an adult day centre. Hire an aide to prepare meals. Move to a place with round-the-clock care.
Throws food away; hides or hoards food; uses spoiled food.
Check on the person often. Hire someone to assist with cooking meals.
Gets confused in a restaurant; or by menu choices.
Suggest one or two choices rather than showing the whole menu.
Not able to prepare a meal.
Have the person help the caregiver with tasks such as tearing lettuce, setting table, and drying dishes.
Eats all the time.
Set and keep certain meal times. Distract the person with other tasks. Provide low-calorie snacks such as fruit.
Not able to use utensils.
Offer finger foods.
Has weight loss.
Talk with person’s doctor. Suggest well-liked foods.