Many chairs will be vacant at our Thanksgiving table this year as members of our communities and families sit this one out because dysphagia takes no holiday! The inability to swallow- to eat and drink will leave those we care most about alone and isolated because they cannot commune with family and friends over a shared meal.
The NFOSD team is constantly on the lookout for useful news articles. North Shore Pediatric Therapy posted a website article on Swallowing Disorders vs. Feeding Disorders in Children on October 16, 2012. The article was written by Gretchen Olson, SLP.
We field questions almost weekly from mothers who have young children with Dysphagia. We recognize a pattern of similar characteristics from these frequent contacts. The young child has generally been seen by multiple doctors or therapists over a period of a few years and there is no definitive diagnosis, physical abnormality, or known “reason” why the child is unable to successfully eat. In addition, the amount of time and energy exerted by the mother is draining to the point of near hopelessness.
A swallowing assessment study published in 2008* reported that a swallowing “disorder is under recognized by most clinicians and is frequently underreported by patients.” To provide an easy assessment tool and promote better communications between a patient and their clinicians, the study authors developed and validated a self-administered Eating Assessment Tool with 10 easy questions. This assessment tool is named “EAT-10” and has been adopted by many clinics as a means of initial patient assessment and ongoing progress.
Dr. Peter Belafsky, an NFOSD board member and current president of the Dysphagia Research Society (DRS) wrote a president’s letter to the DRS membership in June 2012. In that letter he likened the affects of severe dysphagia on the patient as being in a constant state of water boarding. The video in this article was published by Amnesty International. Be forewarned, it is short, yet graphic, and is not for everyone.
by Jan C. Pryor M.A., CCC-SLP, BRS-S
The NFOSD was contacted recently by freelance journalist Janie Rosman. She was writing an article for Today’s Caregiver magazine and asked for some advice on the subject of pill swallowing difficulty. Jan Pryor provided a write up with a few tips and ideas which may help our readership.
A frequent problem for people with swallowing difficulties is taking pills. Usually the trouble is swallowing large pills. There are several options that simply alter the form of the medication.