My 87 mother forgets she had meals. She wakes up in middle of night hungry. How can I manage her hunger?

Follow
Share
This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
11

Answers

Show:
It sounds like the real problem is she's not sleeping through the night. Can you get her a sleeping medication that will allow all of you to get some sleep? That's the only solution I see. You could shut your dad away so she can't get to him, but that would only agitate her, which isn't good. The wanting food at night is secondary to her not sleeping through the night. If she could sleep, all of these other things would go away.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Well, that makes things even tougher, dad being asleep and mom checking that he is okay, my mother does this with me and my cat. Okay, so lots of good suggestions, like the ones that suggest leaving out portion snacks, etc. I fill my mother up with lots of fiber, she likes bran, nuts, bananas, oatmeal, this is filling I find for her and me. Hopefully you will find a solution, can the doctor help out here?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Thank you for all the suggestions. The problem with her getting up in the middle of night hungry is that she wakes up my 90 years old dad to help her. she also has severe arthorities in both knees and walking specially at night is difficult for her. she also gets very nervous when dad is not around or sleeping. so she has to wake him up to make sure he is okay.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Sunflo is right, that you can't get her to understand that she already ate. She doesn't remember, and if you tell her, she will forget again in a short while.

You haven't really said why this is a problem. Does she make you get up to feed her? That would get old fast. Would it work to put a serving of dinner aside to give to her later when she is hungry, or "peckish", as the Brits say? Peckish means wanting to eat, as opposed to feeling actual hunger. I certainly like to eat sometimes just for the pleasure of it!

My husband also forgets that we have eaten. In our household, we do a lot of grazing, and not too much sitting down together for a meal. I think he gets a sensation in his stomach, or gets bored, and thinks he is hungry. If I tell him we just ate, he will accept it, but still wants to eat. I tell him to eat crackers and cheese or to make a sandwich. Oh, I should offer him soup. At least that would have a few vegetables!

Sometimes I offer to make him something that will take a while to prepare. He will go back to his computer, and not show up hungry again for an hour or so! so you can also use distraction, and she will forget that she was hungry.

To keep her weight down, reduce portion size and expect her to eat more often.

To make it easier on yourself, let go of getting her to understand. Plan to have lots of snacks and half-meals available and easy for you to give her. Make sure there is something for her to get for herself in the middle of the night. This disease sucks bigtime. Choose your battles wisely.

To keep his weight down, I try to reduce portion sizes.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

If she is saying "I'm hungry" in the middle of the night I don't think it matters that she ate an evening meal (whether she remembers the meal or not). Telling her she has eaten previously isn't going to fix the hunger she is experiencing when she is awake in the middle of the night. If she's hungry - feed her a snack. I like Madeaa's suggestion of a bedtime snack to prevent the awakening hungry.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

My grandma died at 103 years old in February. She was regularly up during the night and wanting a snack. I made sure there were a couple things within reach where she could find them easily on the kitchen countertop (because that's where she would start looking for food...). So a loaf of bread and some bananas within her reach was all it took for her to be able to find a snack on her own and go back to bed. Most nights I would hear her and get up with her but if I didn't, she got what she was looking for and went back to bed.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Heck, let the woman eat! Seriously - unless, of course she's under a diet program.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I'm not sure that forgetting she had meals would really have anything to do with her being hungry and wanting to eat, perhaps she is not eating enough at each meal and is hungry. I give my mother tea and scone or something before bed and so far it has been good. Maybe some medication is increasing her appetite.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I would try several more frequent small meals during the day with several small snacks. This may be better nutritionally as well as more satisfying. Previous poster had a good idea with having a small tray or basket with small snack foods. You might even consider 1/2 sandwich, cheese and crackers, small cookie or small yogurt, grapes, finger type foods she can access at night -- don't forget a sippy cup with a beverage.

With dementia, you can't reason with them or try to set the record straight...they just can't remember short term and that includes the meals. If the meals are smaller and spaced across the day and into evening before bed, maybe she'll stay mor satiated thru the night.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

she is in early stage of demensia and she forgets that she had her meals. how can i make her understand that she has already had lunch or dinner?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.