Every other Saturday, Beth visited her mom for more than just a shopping trip; it was an opportunity to reconnect and spend some quality time together. On each visit, as part of their ritual coffee break, before they ventured out on the grocery run, Beth took stock of what had been consumed in the past two weeks. To her surprise, this particular inventory showed that not much food had gone missing beyond breads and basic staples such as milk, oranges, and bananas, which led her to worry: What has mother eaten over those last couple of weeks?

Mom told Beth that she was eating, and what she couldn’t finish she would save for the next day. She said she had soup for dinner a couple nights because she had a shelf full of canned soups and didn’t want them to exceed the expiration date. Beth accepted her answer but tucked her response away for future reference.

The two went off shopping with a list containing not just sustenance for meals but handy between-meal snacks like pudding and applesauce. Though these weren’t necessarily nutritious options, convenience was key, so they wanted to make sure she had things on hand whenever needed throughout the day.

When they got home and put the groceries away, Beth asked her mom if she was having any issues getting her sandwiches made, or meals into the microwave? Mom said no I just haven’t been that hungry lately so I eat what I can and save what is left for the next meal. When putting items in the refrigerator, Beth found that there were untouched leftovers tucked away. Examining further revealed a wealth of meals that had gone uneaten.

With great care, Beth made sure her mother was taking the necessary medications on time before she left for home. Taking mental note of any potential medication delays, she promised to check in tomorrow and conveyed a loving goodbye as she left. Out of an abundance of caution, Beth has now adopted a daily habit of making sure mom is adhering to doctor’s orders.

Beth was in deep thought as she drove home. Mom needs more help than she can provide. She is having some significant issues eating and taking her medications. Thinking about it, mom may be having some memory issues outside of eating and taking meds. Beth was determined to get some assistance, so she reached out to our care management team to discuss options. Beth wanted to find someone to check in on mom one or two times a week to make sure she has eaten and taken her meds.

Beth decided to hire us to get an evaluation for mom and develop a care plan for not only the two issues that are currently presenting concerns but also other concerns that we might see in our assessment. After meeting with them we suggested that mom see a doctor to update any health concerns that may be new, such as malnutrition and dehydration. Based on a conversation with her and learning that she is “forgetting” to eat her leftovers, she should also discuss memory testing. These results will help us develop a more extensive care plan around the doctors’ findings. Together with the family, we can address medication, nutrition, and possible memory behaviors and develop a plan of care that will assist Beth with her mom’s care in the short-term, and long-term, and also create a contingency plan for concerns that develop over time.

Beth is pleased with the assistance we offer, the knowledge we bring to the table, and our focused approach to her mom’s care. The trust that Beth’s mom has developed with the care management team is remarkable and will set the tone for a beneficial long-term relationship.

If you or someone in your family are facing concerns about nutrition or other aging challenges, please give us a call at (203) 258-2640 or email us at info@growingoptions.com. We’ll be happy to assist!