Safe Eating Tips for Seniors at Holiday Time

Enjoying meals, snacks, and treats with our loved ones are synonymous with the holidays. After all, we wouldn’t need New Year’s resolutions to slim down if we didn’t do a little extra eating over the holidays!

When our loved ones who are seniors join us for holiday meals, or if we spend time with them at their SNF or senior living facility, it is important to practice diligence to ensure they eat safely. Below are 6 tips to help you and your family enjoy safe meals:

  1. Don’t skimp on the gravy. Keep meats well moistened.
  2. Dunk those cookies in milk or tea so they are easier to chew.
  3. Yes, it is time to sit back and relax, but not too far. Make sure Grandma or Grandpa is sitting upright during all meals.
  4. Have a drink with all meals. Having water available is even better!
  5. Decrease distractions during mealtime. Keep an eye on Grandma or Grandpa to make sure they are chewing without issue and not talking while trying to chew.
  6. Remember to take small bites and sips of water. There’s no rush. I’m sure everything tastes delicious!

Hopefully, all these tips will go a long way toward reducing the risk of choking or swallowing problems, especially for senior citizens. Enjoy the holidays!

About the author:

Aimee Hahne, CCC-SLP, heads up Maine Mobile Diagnostics, which provides FEES testing in Southern Maine. Contact Aimee to hear about how we can help your SNF patients with dysphagia experience a greater quality of life.