What the Family Can do to Help!

  Become familiar with the patient's individualized swallowing program and follow the guidelines carefully.

  Communicate with the staff.

  Give the patient support and encouragement to participate in the swallowing program.

  Offer only foods and liquids that are of the consistency recommended by the speech-language pathologist.

  Remember the patient needs to be sitting upright when eating unless other specific recommendations have been made.

  Encourage the patient to take small amounts of food.

  Allow sufficient time for eating.

  Be sure the patient has swallowed completely before taking more food.

  Stop feeding immediately if the patient chokes.

  Leave the patient sitting for 20 to 30 minutes after eating.


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