Quick Answer: Is It Ok To Use A Straw When Using Thickener On Elderly Patients?

You might think that drinking through a straw or a cup with a spout will be easier. However, this may send the drink further back into the mouth or throat before you have started swallowing. Using straws or spouts when drinking may increase the risk of liquid going down the wrong way into your windpipe or lungs.

Why not use straws with thickened liquids?

Thickened Liquids This makes them easier to swallow for some people with dysphagia. But for others, thick fluids are more likely to leave residue in the pharynx and then fall into the airway, and they are harder to clear.

Can you use a straw with aspiration precautions?

Do not eat or drink with a straw. Take small bites and chew well before you swallow. Avoid distractions while you eat.

Do straws increase aspiration risk?

CONCLUSIONS. No statistical significant difference was demonstrated in risk of penetration or aspiration of thin liquids between cup and straw usage in patients with mild oropharyngeal dysphagia.

Does thickener cause dehydration?

Recent evidence has established the risk for harm with thickened liquids. Specifically, patients assigned to thickened liquids in one study had a higher rate of dehydration (6%-2%), fever (4%-2%), and urinary tract infections (6%-3%) than those assigned to thin liquids.

Should elderly use straws?

Ingestion of liquid with a chin tuck is difficult without a straw. Veiga, et al. have demonstrated that straw use in the elderly has a more favorable influence on the oral phase of the sequential swallowing of liquid when compared to cup use.

Can people on thickened liquids use a straw?

You might think that drinking through a straw or a cup with a spout will be easier. However, this may send the drink further back into the mouth or throat before you have started swallowing. Using straws or spouts when drinking may increase the risk of liquid going down the wrong way into your windpipe or lungs.

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What position helps prevent aspiration?

Body positions that minimize aspiration include the reclining position, chin down, head rotation, side inclination, the recumbent position, and combinations of these. Patients with severe dysphagia often use a 30° reclining position.

What are the symptoms of silent aspiration?

Silent aspiration usually has no symptoms, and people aren’t aware that fluids or stomach contents have entered their lungs. Overt aspiration will usually cause sudden, noticeable symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, or a hoarse voice. Silent aspiration tends to occur in people with impaired senses.

Why is drinking through a straw bad for you?

Drinking sugary or acidic beverages through a straw can increase the likelihood of cavities. Straws send a concentrated stream of liquid toward a small area of the teeth, which can erode enamel and cause tooth decay.

Can stroke patients use a straw?

Don’t use straws. (They make it too easy for liquid to leak into the airway from the back of the throat.) Allow plenty of time for meals. Encourage smaller bites and sips.

Is ice cream good for dysphagia?

suitable for dysphagia. Sadly, people with dysphagia (swallowing problems) who require thickened fluids in order to help them swallow more safely, are not allowed to have ice cream. This is because ice cream melts in the mouth and turns into an unthickened liquid which can increase the risk of aspiration.

Why do elderly people thicken liquids?

The goal of “thickeners” is to make all liquids, including beverages and soups, a thicker consistency that is less likely to cause aspiration. Thicker liquids travel more slowly down the throat and that makes them easier to control.

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For which condition would a patient require thickened liquids?

Dysphagia is the medical term for difficulty swallowing. Thickened liquids are often used in the management of dysphagia to improve bolus control and to help prevent aspiration.

How do older people thicken liquids?

If liquids are too thin, add one of the following common thickeners to get your liquid nectar-thick.

  1. Banana flakes.
  2. Cooked cereals (like cream of wheat or cream of rice)
  3. Cornstarch.
  4. Custard mix.
  5. Gravy.
  6. Instant potato flakes.

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