Shortly after my Mother moved to her Bupa nursing home at the start of the year, we found she was almost always dehydrated. (She hadn’t been well looked after in her previous home and perhaps wasn’t used to drinking all that much.)
She’s had dementia unofficially for 7 years, officially for 5. In late stage dementia now, she wasn’t always willing to drink glass after glass of water or juice. Thinking outside of the box once more, I hit on the idea of fine puréed smoothie drinks. The kind you give to infants. They went down a treat. Perhaps because they seem more like a food or sweet treat.
There are various varieties available. I opted for Ella’s Kitchen, because they were readily available in my local supermarket and came in all sorts of flavours. They also do meal versions which are puréed as well.
At the nursing home, we would offer these 2-3 times a day. We did reduce them at some point, on the Bupa nurse’s recommendation due to conflicting health concerns Mum had at the time, and then stopped them altogether at a later date but they were a great interim measure. Joan’s drinking picked up and we offered her more juices.
(Important to remember: caffeinated drinks are diuretics and can further dehydrate rather than hydrate a person.)
Another great alternative to anyone unwilling to drink is: fruit, which is made up of mainly water. Grapes are a brilliant option. Once Jelly Drops are mainstream, hopefully these will help solve the problem too.