CARENOTES | Past Carenotes
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This Week's Carenote - 3/11/14
My husband is a stroke patient. Thankfully, he can still walk
(with a slight limp), understand almost everything said to him, and is able
to take care of his own personal needs. He’s having speech therapy and that
is going fairly well. He is on several medications—about nine pills per day.
He HATES taking any type of pill and always has. He becomes very angry when
he has to take the meds, and becomes very angry anytime I don't understand
what he's telling me. I feel that depression is a factor, but putting him on
another med would probably make bad matters worse. We have been married 46
years and I love him more than ever, but the emotional stress is really
getting me down. What can I do?
Shared by: Lisa Malkin
We started giving my grandma her pills with
apple sauce instead of liquid to wash it down. It is so much
easier!! She really prefers this!! (I think you could use yogurt
too) OR if he takes most of his pills at one time during the day,
mix most of them in the blender in a smoothie.
Shared by: Elaine
Oh Linda - this is tough. If downing
that amount of pills every day is daunting for him, I agree
with Eileen's suggestion. You could also separate the capsules
from the pills - swallow capsules whole and crush pills into a
little applesauce or yogurt or pudding. Doesn't a spoonful of
sugar help the medicine go down? ;)
Dysphagia can be uncomfortable
for everyone involved - patience, patience, patience. The therapy
takes time - here's a shortcut tip for now: can your husband read
and write? Make up a list of common and descriptive words you use
to communicate that he can point to when frustrated with the effort
of speech. Toss in a few silly or profane ones too - the smiles may
be just what you both need at that moment. Good luck to you both.
Shared by: Jessica A. Crowley
Lake Worth, FL
Linda, My suggestion would be to
try to attend speech therapy with him. The therapist,
many times, will be working on words and phrases that
are still very difficult for him. If you are present,
this will enable you to hear the pronunciation of these
words and make mental notes on what it is he is saying.
As far as the pills go, gently remind him that these
pills are to help him recover. A reminder that you love
him more than ever would definitely help as well. Men
often feel a sense of guilt when their health starts to
fail a bit. If he knows you are by his side, even when
his health is not its best, it may trigger him to be more
understanding at your caregiver situation.
Shared by: Eileen M. Mento
Chester County, PA
Try placing the pill in
a small amount (one swallow) of his favorite
jelly. The pill will slide down easily and
taste good too. I've used this technique on
clients and my own family.