9.4 Help with feeding Listen

Some people cannot eat by themselves and need help. However this must be treated with sensitivity and care. Requiring help to eat can easily increase the feeling of helplessness and dependence. Force of any sort should never be used during feeding. Allow at least 30 minutes with each person and avoid feeding more than one patient at a time. When feeding, it is important to have good technique. Maintain a firm grip on the fork, but move it gently so as not to damage the lips and oral cavity. The person you are feeding must be able to use their lips to get the food. Do not dry around the mouth, but rather pat to avoid soreness. Customise the fork or spoon sizes delivered to match the throat capacity and chewing pace. An increase in speed often results in someone refusing anymore, so it is important to be patient.