pjudd1 Asked February 2011

y mom forgets she just ate and always asks for more food. She never stops eating, what can I do to make her stop?

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lach61 Mar 2011
Since my MIL entered the NH, she's put on the pounds. At least, when she was here with my husband & I--we watched her weight. Whenever she would fall or have a mini-seizure (just stare into space), she was dead weight.
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NancyH Mar 2011
If the person isn't a diabetic, can they suck on a tootsie pop or something like that? Maybe it's just needing something in their mouth that's the problem. My mother-in-law can just finish a milk shake and 5 minutes later ask if we can stop for ice cream. I have to show her the empty cup in my cup holder to prove to her that she already had a milk shake. But then again, she'd eat ice cream 24/7 if she could.
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scardascia Mar 2011
pjuddi,

My mother-in-law had the same problem. She would literally keep eating until she vomited. Her doctor told us it was related to her dementia. Her brain no longer recognized the signals it was receiving that she was full.
We kept her portions small so if she asked for more she could have seconds. And we never left a serving bowl or platter on the table during the meal otherwise she'd try to eat very fast to get more. We followed the same routine for every meal - dinner was a salad - main course - a small dessert and coffee. She gradually began to recognize that dessert and coffee meant dinner was over.
But she never stopped trying to get more food - she'd eat all her meat and then say we didn't give her any - or if someone got up from the table she'd try to swipe something off of their plate.
We also tried to slow our meals down and spend more time with her at the table to divert her attention away from the food and make it more social. We made sure someone sat and ate with her for every meal. It was a high point for her each day as she had a captive audience and she was the center of attention. We kept the conversation very basic and tried to keep to a topic that she could participate in. This routine seemed to keep mealtime calm and peaceful. It's just a matter of trial and error - eventually you find something that works and keeps them happy.
One other thing - my mother-in-law never complained of being hungry - but if she had access to food she would eat everything in sight. She also didn't remember from meal to meal insisting she hadn't eaten since yesterday or that she never had lunch. We never corrected her because she wouldn't remember that either. We tried to keep her from getting upset so we just dealt with the moment we were in.
I wish you good luck and lots of patience
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lach61 Mar 2011
My MIL has Alzheimer's (AD) and when she was here at home (now she's in a NH) she would finish eating her meal & we would take the dishes upstairs b/c she would try to rinse them off in the bathroom (b/r). We didn't know how she would do it, she sometimes forgot that her toothbrush had toothpaste on it & would start brushing her hair. Needless to say, we had to wash (more like me) her hair. Anyway, I'm getting away from the subject. I was afraid that she might rinse them off in the toilet, so when she finished--my husband or I took them up to the kitchen right away. When we came back downstairs to her area, she would sometimes ask when we were going to eat. My husband or I would tell her that we just got finished eating. We had to keep her busy with something and it was hard sometimes. I also told her other 4 kids that she couldn't have a lot of chocolate or definitely no diet drinks or diet food because of her meds.
She was 'dead weight' when she blanked out. She has Alzheimer's (AD) with side effects of Parkinson's (PD).
The ASPARTAME or ASPARTAMINE that is listed in the ingredients is not good for anyone, but especially people who take certain meds (e.g. Seroquel, Phenobarbital or Epileptic Medications). She was first diagnosed with AD with side effects of Epilepsy. None of the Epileptic meds that they put her on didn't do anything, but make her react violently and that's why we had her doctor go over the diagnosis (dx) again. ((((((HUGS)))))) & good luck.
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vstefans Feb 2011
This is very hard to deal with. I have some patients who are in this boat, of always being hungry but actually gaining excess weight and its awful. Denying someone food when they are hungry is very hard to do even when it is absolutely necessary. Sometimes a medication like steroid or antihitamine could be causing the high appetite, insulin as the only thing for someone with type 2 diabetes will often be the culprit. My mom used to sneak sugar packets constantly until they added Januvia for her - she jsut really craved sugar all the time, really felt her sugar was low even when it was high. Now we can keep her happy with a small supply of sugar free chocolate. If it is just boredom and lack of any other pleasure in life, trying to get someone to help you come up with satisfying non-food distractions would be an idea. And, very occasionally, someone is just hungry because their nutritional needs are very high and being underestimated! Some teenage boys for example have that problem. Anyways, see if there is any medical or nutritional reason that could be addressed, because this is a very tough problem.
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