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View Diary: Lessons from the Dementia Diner (88 comments)

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  •  I used to work in a dementia unit (12+ / 0-)

    as a CNA back before I had children. (I quit when I found out I was pregnant with my son because I had seen other pregnant cna's get injured and risk losing the baby with violent residents.) But you reminded me of one woman I took care of who used to chant her Hail Mary's every day all through dinner. I'm not Catholic and had never heard them before that, but I have it memorized now thanks to her!

    A trick for dinner: Give them a taste of dessert first. The sugar (and taste) will stimulate the appetite and they eat a greater percentage of the rest. If they slow down, add another bite of dessert.

    "Madness! Total and complete madness! This never would've happened if the humans hadn't started fighting one another!" Londo Mollari

    by FloridaSNMOM on Mon May 27, 2013 at 06:34:21 AM PDT

    •  Great tip, thanks! (7+ / 0-)

      I've noticed the taste for sweets, and had heard it is the last to go. Great idea, though, to use it to stimulate appetite. Thanks! And also for your caregiving, and for stopping by to comment.

      •  I know, a lot of us were trained from childhood (7+ / 0-)

        for dessert last and as a reward.. but at that age and stage of their lives, that really doesn't hold. They need the calories as much as the nutrition when they're eating barely enough to keep a bird alive. Sweets work to get them to eat the rest. Just don't give them all the dessert so they fill up on that and eat nothing else. Interspersed through the meal works well.

        And thank you, it was a difficult but rewarding job. I miss it. That era of my life is a big part of the reason I went to school for occupational therapy, and my intention was to work in Geriatrics/rehab once more. But I always thought it was much easier on me, who didn't see the residents until after onset than it was on their family who had to deal with the huge changes. We just accepted them as they came to us, and took care of them.

        "Madness! Total and complete madness! This never would've happened if the humans hadn't started fighting one another!" Londo Mollari

        by FloridaSNMOM on Mon May 27, 2013 at 07:43:29 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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