Mealtime Switcheroo

Many years ago my LO (loved one) and I had the pleasure of meeting and chatting with author, Frank McCort. (Angela’s Ashes & ‘Tis).  The conversation went from one Irish topic to another when I confessed to Frank I was not even one teensie bit Irish, but Italian. Without losing a beat, McCort quipped, “Jane, darlin’, the Irish marry Italians so they can eat.”

My LO has always loved to eat. Like every four hours.

His appetite is not as huge as it once was, but he still needs to have regular intake.

His sleep pattern has changed recently. He is sleeping a lot more than usual. (our Doc says this is normal, I am doubtful.) That sleep change affects his eating schedule as well. So, for the past few days he has been looking for dinner around 4 o’clock. The first time it happened I rooted around the freezer for something quick. I always have soup in there for emergencies. He was happy with that and was in bed at 5:30.

Upon checking my calendar I realized I had two back-to back 5:30 pm meetings coming up. So, I purchased a few relatively healthy microwave dinners for him. I prepared the dinners for him just before I left for my meetings. The timing was good for him, and the portions were perfect for him.

If your dementia patient has a sleeping/eating pattern change, just go with it. Either things will get back to “normal,” or things won’t. Don’t force things, it will only cause agitation.

Be sure to take care of your nutritional needs as well. Just because your LO is eating at 5-5:30, and you don’t want to eat then, doesn’t mean you should skip a meal.

Happy wet, rainy, icy, Thursday!


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