What to Do When Elderly Parents Refuse to Eat


Westminster Point Pleasant

Posted on

Jul 14, 2023


Florida - Sarasota, Bradenton & Charlotte Counties

Share This

It can be stressful if your elderly parent loses their appetite or refuses to eat. You’re concerned they aren’t getting the nutrition they need. And if your elderly parent is prone to sickness or already sick, that concern gets magnified. 

If you’re feeling unsure of what to do, here are some simple tactics you can try today to make sure your senior parent gets fed appropriately.

Consult a Doctor

When you notice your elderly parent isn’t eating, it’s important to rule out any serious health issues. You’ll need to address the medical problem first if it’s the primary reason they won’t eat. 

If they have a medical condition already, learn how that could impact their desire to eat. Some medications could also produce side effects that make eating less pleasurable, which you’ll want to recognize. 

A doctor may also recommend an appetite stimulant, which could help your parent considerably.

Stick to a Schedule

Humans thrive on routine, so eating at the same time every day could help your parent’s body expect to eat. Because the ability to feel hunger declines as you get older, waiting until a senior says they’re hungry isn’t a reliable method. 

Instead, focus on a well-rounded meal schedule with some snacks in between. Centers for independent living in Bradenton, Florida, can offer reliable meal schedules to help your parent stay on track with their caloric consumption.

Notice What’s Working

Figure out what’s working in your parent’s diet and use that as a leaping-off point. For instance, do they like what you serve them for breakfast? Are they hungrier in the mornings? 

Asking and answering these kinds of questions will help you track patterns that you can use to your advantage. Just as recognizing what’s working is helpful, it’s equally important to avoid things that don’t work.

Get Creative

Some experimentation may be necessary if your elderly parent struggles to eat. Ask them about what they like and why. See if there’s a way you can incorporate their answer into their diet in a healthy way. Approach the subject with genuine interest and care; help them remember what they love about certain foods and why. 

If there’s ever a day when they don’t want to eat anything you offer them, you’ll always have a trick up your sleeve. To increase nutrient density, think about where you can add extra healthy calories that won’t bulk up the meal. Avocado or olive oil is fantastic for this.

Focus on the Why

Sometimes mealtime can be just as frustrating for your parent as for you. If they’re frustrated because they can’t use utensils, try serving food that can be easily eaten without them. 

Portion size can also be an issue for seniors, so don’t be afraid to serve smaller portions of nutrient-dense meals throughout the day. Accessible snacks like pre-cut fruit or cheese and crackers are delicious and easy to throw together. 

For seniors who have difficulty chewing, cut smaller pieces or introduce healthy smoothies that are well-balanced with fruits and vegetables.

Dine Together with Independent Living in Bradenton, Florida

Eating alone can be dull or even upsetting for anyone, let alone the elderly. Try enjoying a meal with your parent if you can. It’s even better if you can take them to a restaurant they love or get together for lunch with an old friend. 

Consult with centers that focus on independent living in Bradenton, Florida. Many senior and community centers have cafes and restaurants that might encourage your parent to grab a bite to eat.

Other Articles You May Like

Thriving in Golden Years: Prioritizing Senior Health and Well-being

As we age, prioritizing our health and well-being becomes increasingly important. At A Call to Order Professional Organizer, we understand the significance of supporting seniors in their journey to thrive in their golden years. In this blog post, we'll explore practical tips and strategies for prioritizing senior health and well-being, ensuring a fulfilling and enjoyable life.The Importance of Senior Health and Well-beingSenior health and well-being encompass various aspects of physical, mental, and emotional wellness. Maintaining good health allows seniors to live independently, enjoy meaningful relationships, and pursue their passions and interests. By prioritizing senior health and well-being, we can enhance quality of life and promote longevity.Practical Tips for Prioritizing Senior Health and Well-beingStay Active: Regular physical activity is essential for maintaining mobility, strength, and overall health. Encourage seniors to engage in activities they enjoy, such as walking, swimming, gardening, or tai chi. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise most days of the week to reap the benefits of physical activity.Eat a Balanced Diet: Nutrition plays a crucial role in senior health and well-being. Encourage seniors to eat a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats. Limit processed foods, sugary snacks, and excessive salt intake. Drinking plenty of water is also essential for staying hydrated and supporting bodily functions.Prioritize Mental Health: Mental health is just as important as physical health, especially as we age. Encourage seniors to engage in activities that promote mental stimulation and cognitive function, such as reading, puzzles, learning new skills, or socializing with friends and family. Address any signs of depression, anxiety, or cognitive decline promptly by seeking professional help if needed.Maintain Social Connections: Social interaction is vital for seniors' emotional well-being and overall happiness. Encourage seniors to stay connected with friends, family, and community groups. Organize regular social activities, outings, or gatherings to combat loneliness and isolation. Volunteer work or joining clubs and organizations can also provide opportunities for social engagement.Practice Self-Care: Encourage seniors to prioritize self-care activities that promote relaxation, stress reduction, and emotional balance. This may include practicing mindfulness or meditation, enjoying hobbies and interests, getting adequate rest and sleep, and seeking support from loved ones or professional counselors when needed.Stay Safe at Home: Ensure seniors' living environments are safe and conducive to their well-being. Remove tripping hazards, install grab bars and handrails, improve lighting, and make necessary modifications to accommodate mobility challenges. Consider enlisting the help of a professional organizer to declutter and organize living spaces for improved safety and functionality.At A Call to Order Professional Organizer, we are committed to supporting seniors in prioritizing their health and well-being as they embrace their golden years. Our team understands the unique challenges and considerations that come with aging, and we are here to provide practical guidance and support every step of the way. With our expertise in organizing and decluttering, we can help create a safe, comfortable, and harmonious living environment that promotes senior health and well-being. Let us be your partner in thriving in your golden years, ensuring a fulfilling and joyful life ahead.

Support Options for Adult Children Taking Care of an Elderly Parent

Caring for an aging parent is something a lot of us will face. Right now, over 37 million people across the U.S. are walking this path, pouring their hearts into caring for their parents. If your elderly parent is living with you, or if you're figuring out how to support them from miles away, you know this journey is all about love, dedication, and sometimes, a bit of sacrifice.Sometimes, you might catch yourself thinking, "I don't want to care for my elderly parents all by myself." Its okay to be honest about how youre feeling. Weve been there, and we're here to help bring joy into the aging process, for both you and your loved one. The good news? You dont have to walk this road alone. This blog is all about getting real with the reasons we might find ourselves stepping into caregiver shoes, and sharing several care options that can lighten your load and brighten your aging parent's day.How Adult Children Become CaregiversLets look at why adult children often end up being the go-to caregiver for their senior parents.Sense of Duty and Responsibility: After all the years they spent caring for us, it feels natural to want to return the favor. This feeling, while rooted in love and respect, can leave us feeling obligated to take on the role of caregiver.Fear of Negative Consequences: Nobody wants to feel like theyre letting their parents down or worrying about getting side-eye from family and friends. This kind of pressure can make us feel stuck in the caregiver role, even when its tough.Parents Increasing Dependence: Watching our parents age and become more reliant on us can be a challenging transition. While it can feel overwhelming, the last thing we want is for them to think theyre a burden.Family Dynamics: Oh, the joys of family life! When it comes to caring for our parents, those complicated relationships and emotional ties can play a significant role in adult children feeling trapped caring for elderly parents. Being an Only Child or the Local Child: If youre an only child or the sibling who lives nearest to your aging parent, the sense of responsibility can feel even greater to step up as the family caregiver for your mom, dad, or both.Lack of Alternative Care Options: Without other family members pitching in or the funds to pay for professional caregivers, you may feel like theres no choice but to continue caring for your parents all on your own.Thankfully, there are ways to manage your situation without feeling like you're giving up your life to care for elderly parents. Wrapping You in Support: Alternative Care for Your Senior Loved OnesWhen youre standing at a caregiving crossroads, knowing there are different paths you can take is a game-changer. Lets dive into some options that offer both you and your loved ones a breath of fresh air.In-home CareIn-home care is all about keeping your parent comfy and happy wherever they live. If youre caring for elderly parents in your home, theyll come to you! Services range from skilled medical care by nurses or therapists to non-medical support such as help with daily activities, meal preparation, and companionship. Best for: Older adults who need regular assistance or medical care but want to maintain their independence by staying in their familiar home environment.Nursing HomesNursing homes provide older adults with around-the-clock medical care and supervision, designed for older adults with significant health needs that cant be safely managed at home. These facilities offer a high level of support, including access to healthcare professionals, rehabilitation services, and social activities.Best for: Older adults with advanced medical needs that require comprehensive care and continuous professional monitoring.Assisted LivingAssisted living strikes a balance between independence and support. Older adults live in their own private living spaces but have access to help when they need it, along with meals and social activities. Residents can enjoy community activities, social opportunities, and the security of available care.Best for: Older adults who dont want the responsibility of maintaining a home but still wish to live independently.Respite CareNeed a breather? Respite care provides short-term relief for primary caregivers, ranging from a few hours to several weeks. This allows adult children to take time away from their daily caregiving responsibilities to handle personal matters, or simply rest and recharge.Best for: Family caregivers who need to take a well-deserved break, whether it's for personal time, vacation, or emergencies. Adult DaycareAdult daycare centers are like summercamp for older adults. They offer a safe and engaging environment where your parents can spend their day enjoying various activities, meals, and socializing, with professional oversight and care available as needed. Best for: Older adults looking for social interaction and activities during daytime hours, and for caregivers who work or need regular breaks. NaborforceNaborforce connects older adults with community members, known as Nabors (pronounced "Neighbors"), happy to lend a helping hand to older adults in the area. From picking up groceries to sharing a friendly conversation, Nabors offer both practical help and social engagement, bringing joy to older adults wherever they are. Best for: Older adults who need a bit of help now and then around the house or around town without the need for a fixed schedule or long-term commitment. Remember that you have options the next time you feel trapped caring for elderly parentshelp is just a call away!When You Need a Helping Hand, Call NaborforceAt Naborforce, we bridge the gap between full independence and formal senior care by providing on-demand help to older adults. Through our simple platform, we make it easy to connect your loved one with vetted individuals right in their communityno strings attached. If youre looking for a kind, reliable person to help out your parent now and then, sign up to schedule a visit from Naborforce.Our Nabors are currently offering a helping hand in places like:Atlanta, GABethesda, MDCharlotte, NCCharlottesville, VADallas, TXFort Worth, TXNorthern VirginiaRaleigh, NCRichmond, VAVirginia BeachOur goal is simple: to make life a little easier and a lot more enjoyable for older adults. Give us a call at 844.MY.NABOR or sign up your senior loved one today.

Elevating Well-being: Guiding Lights - Navigating Transitions with Senior Move Management

Transitioning to a new chapter in life can be a daunting journey, especially for seniors facing the prospect of moving to a new home. At A Call to Order Professional Organizer, we understand the emotional complexities that come with such transitions. Our Senior Move Management services are designed to be guiding lights during these times, offering support, compassion, and practical assistance to seniors and their families. In this guide, we'll explore how Senior Move Management can elevate well-being by providing a smoother and more emotionally supportive transition experience.The Emotional Impact of Transitions for SeniorsMoving to a new home is a significant life event that can evoke a range of emotions for seniors. While there may be excitement about starting fresh in a new space, there's also the sadness of leaving behind familiar surroundings, memories, and attachments. Additionally, the practical aspects of packing, decluttering, and coordinating logistics can feel overwhelming, especially for seniors who may have physical limitations or health concerns. Recognizing and addressing these emotional challenges is essential for supporting seniors' well-being during transitions.How Senior Move Management Offers Guidance and SupportCompassionate Listening and Understanding: At A Call to Order Professional Organizer, we approach each senior move with empathy and compassion. We take the time to listen to seniors' concerns, fears, and preferences, understanding that every individual's experience is unique. By providing a supportive ear and validating their emotions, we create a safe space for seniors to express themselves and navigate the emotional complexities of moving.Personalized Planning and Organization: Senior Move Management involves meticulous planning and organization to ensure a smooth transition. Our team works closely with seniors and their families to create personalized moving plans that address their specific needs, timelines, and goals. From decluttering and packing to arranging transportation and setting up the new home, we handle every detail with care and attention to ensure a stress-free experience.Emotional Support and Encouragement: Moving can trigger feelings of anxiety, sadness, and uncertainty for seniors. Our Senior Move Management team provides emotional support and encouragement every step of the way, offering reassurance, guidance, and gentle encouragement to help seniors navigate their emotions and stay positive throughout the process. We celebrate milestones, acknowledge challenges, and remind seniors of the exciting possibilities that lie ahead in their new home.Practical Assistance and Problem-Solving: Seniors may face practical challenges during a move, from deciding what to keep, donate, or discard to coordinating with movers and utilities. Our Senior Move Management services include practical assistance and problem-solving to address these challenges effectively. Whether it's helping seniors downsize their belongings, managing logistics, or resolving unexpected issues, our team is there to provide solutions and alleviate stress.Continued Support Beyond the Move: Our commitment to seniors doesn't end once the move is complete. We offer continued support and follow-up to ensure that seniors are settling into their new home comfortably and adjusting to their new surroundings. Whether it's connecting seniors with local resources and services or providing ongoing assistance with home organization and maintenance, we're dedicated to supporting their well-being in the long term.At A Call to Order Professional Organizer, we believe in being guiding lights for seniors during times of transition. Our Senior Move Management services are grounded in compassion, empathy, and practical expertise, providing seniors and their families with the support and guidance they need to navigate moves with grace and dignity. Let us be your guiding lights as you embark on the journey to a new chapter in life, illuminating the path with compassion, understanding, and unwavering support.

Local Services By This Author

Westminster Point Pleasant

Independent Living 1533 4th Ave. W., Bradenton, Florida, 34205

In the 1950s, leaders of the Presbyterian Church in Florida envisioned faith-based, not-for-profit, active-living communities across the state. To fulfill the church's ministry to older adults, Westminster Communities of Florida was established. From its roots in Bradenton, it has expanded to 19 communities statewide, attracting over 5,000 residents. Ranked as the eighth largest organization of its kind nationally, Westminster Communities of Florida boasts excellent financial strength, recognized with a highly-desired A- Fitch rating.Welcoming individuals of all faiths, we offer an active living community in Florida with an enlightened, fully integrated, person-centered approach to healthcare. Explore the enriching lifestyle and compassionate care at Westminster Communities of Florida

Westminster Point Pleasant

Assisted Living 1533 4th Ave. W., Bradenton, Florida, 34205

Assisted living at Westminster Point Pleasant offers residents the support they need to maintain an engaging and independent lifestyle, with the peace of mind of 24/7 assistance. Here's what sets their assisted living program apart:Customized support: Residents receive just the right level of support and assistance tailored to their individual needs, ensuring that they can maintain their dignity and independence while receiving the care they require.Variety of waterfront apartments: Residents can choose from a variety of waterfront apartments, all elegantly appointed with private bathrooms, and some featuring kitchens or kitchenettes, allowing for a comfortable and personalized living space.Comprehensive services included: The monthly fee for assisted living includes a range of lifestyle-enhancing services, such as assistance with activities of daily living, medication management, restaurant-style dining, housekeeping, laundry services, utilities, and 24-hour security, among others.Person-Centered Care philosophy: Westminster Communities of Florida's Person-Centered Care philosophy ensures that each resident receives personalized support while maintaining their dignity and individuality.Access to amenities and health services: Residents have access to a host of campus amenities and health services, including the exclusive My W Life well-being program, life-enriching activities, scheduled transportation, a Health Resource Center, Rapid Recovery short-stay rehabilitation, outpatient therapy services, and access to skilled nursing care.Overall, assisted living at Westminster Point Pleasant provides residents with a supportive and enriching environment where they can thrive and receive the care they need while enjoying an active and engaging lifestyle.

Westminster Point Pleasant

Housing - Other Types 1533 4th Ave. W., Bradenton, Florida, 34205

Westminster Point Pleasant offers active senior living in Bradenton with a focus on providing residents with peace of mind and a plan for their future. Here's what sets their community apart: Maintenance-free living: Residents can enjoy their active lifestyle to the fullest without the burden of home maintenance. The dedicated staff takes care of all home upkeep, from repairs to landscaping, allowing residents to focus on the activities they enjoy. Life Plan Community: Westminster Point Pleasant is a Life Plan Community, offering residents a comprehensive plan for their future healthcare needs. With a full complement of healthcare and supportive services on campus, residents have access to short-term rehabilitation, assisted living, and long-term nursing care as needed. Priority access to healthcare services: As a resident of Westminster Point Pleasant, you'll have priority access to a range of healthcare services, ensuring that you receive the support and assistance you need to maintain your independence and quality of life. Financial stability: Westminster Communities of Florida is the state's largest not-for-profit senior living organization, with a strong financial foundation dating back to 1954. Residents can have confidence in the stability and reliability of the community, knowing that their resources are being managed with good stewardship. Overall, Westminster Point Pleasant offers active senior living with a focus on providing residents with a worry-free lifestyle and a comprehensive plan for their future healthcare needs. It's a fiscally sound choice for those seeking a vibrant and secure retirement community in Bradenton.