This is new. Until this weekend mom was good about taking her pills.

Saturday morning I caught her spitting the pills I'd given her into the toilet. This was odd and she denied it when I said something.

Tonight I gave her the evening meds and she announced she had to go to the toilet. I accompanied her as she is shaky. She uses Rollator and I follow with wheelchair.

Yep, she was spitting pills. This despite taking drinks of water.

I can't hide them in food. She dislikes applesauce. Any tips?

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Just my experience with Luz and her pills. She hated applesauce had to change to pudding. Pills had to be crushed into dust or she would find the pieces/chunks and hide them in her mouth until the nurses left then she would spit out the pieces and chunks. Even with pudding.
She was on one a day multi vitamins. I used the gummy ones and she ate them like candy.
Ice cream was another mixer for crushed pills.
I also found out that one of the protein drinks could be made into a pudding and I used that as well.
By all means check with the pharmcy as to which pills can be crushed and if liquid meds are available.
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Reply to OldSailor

My mother is on honey consistency liquids and pureed foods. I talked to our pharmacist to make sure her meds could be crushed and then talked to her doctor. There are two out of about 8 meds that can be crushed, the other two I put in strawberry apple sauce, mix and give it to her and then some thickened water. She does just fine. The crushed meds are in strawberry apple sauce and then I give her some water to wash them down. Do not attempt to do this unless doctor and pharmacy approves . My mother never liked apple sauce, but the strawberry one by Motts unsweetened, she will eat. There is a product called Organic Fruit Sauce Crushers apple banana flavor from Trader Joes, my mother loves it. I do not tell her it has apple sauce in it and it tastes more like bananas than apple sauce. Whole foods might have something similar. I tried sugar free puddings in the past, but the flavored apple sauce seems to be the better choice for her. Baby food stage 2 Beech Nut Naturals is good mixed with meds, carrots and peas, pears with avocado and pineapple and a good variety more might be worth a try. My mother had on occasion tried to spit her pills out, explained the importance of taking them, and then she was cooperative. Once your mom receives her medication, make sure she swallows the medication before you leave her alone. Crushed might work best for your mom, with doctor and pharmacist approval.
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Reply to earlybird

put in a spoonful of ice cream - crushed
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Reply to Franklin2011
lealonnie1 Jul 3, 2020
It's NOT safe to crush all pills!! It's very important to make SURE the pills being prescribed are safe to crush BEFORE doing so or bad things can happen.
Ask her if she is experiencing any bad side effects from her medication. Many pills cause nausea, upset stomach, diarrhea, gas, bloating, etc etc.

Many people do not realize that as people get older, their bodies become less tolerant. In your profile you state that your mother is 86. At her age, digestion slows, elimination slows, metabolism slows (she has more fat than muscle), and her brain is literally shrinking even if she didn't have dementia.

Rather than getting upset with her and confronting her so that she feels she has to deny spitting out the pills, take her to go to the pharmacist for a review of all her medications and dosages. In my opinion, pharmacists are a valuable but underused resource to old people and their caregivers.

See what a pharmacist has to say about her meds and dosages. Use that information at her next doctor's visit because some medications need to be tapered. And ask if doses can be lowered and whether all the medications are really still necessary. Most medications are eliminated in urine and at 86, kidneys are fragile.
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Reply to NYDaughterInLaw

Applesauce is not the only way to "hide" pills.
Pudding works. Ice cream, jelly
Have you tried crushing the pills. It might be that swallowing a pill is difficult for her.
Many of the pills you get can be obtained as a liquid. Some are even available as a dissolve-able strip you place on the tongue. You can ask about that.
I would also do a double check on all her medications. Eliminate ones that she really does not need.
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Reply to Grandma1954

Teepa Snow mentioned that a spoon of jam works better than applesauce because of the texture, the pieces of fruit make it easier to hide a pill. You may be able to crush her meds also, but ask the pharmacist first because some meds can not be crushed!
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Reply to cwillie

You don't mention dementia with your mother, but this sounds like it could be at the root of her suddenly deciding she doesn't want to take her pills, especially the 'denying' part of the story. Have you explained to her why it's important she follow doctor's orders to the letter? If she does have dementia, of course, these explanations will be useless and you'll have to ask the doctor for recommendations. Applesauce is certainly not the only food you can use to hide her pills in. What about ice cream, yoghurt, pudding, or creamy foods of that nature?

Some elders reach a point where they refuse to take pills, period. And then you just have to let the chips fall where they may. It's her life, after all, and her decision on how to live it.

Good luck!!
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Reply to lealonnie1

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