Some people reach a point of needing to be spoon-fed, because they can no longer physically manipulate utensils or the tongue motions to chew and swallow effectively. Yet the appetite may still be strong.
To spoon-feed successfully, try these tips:
1. Put only a small amount of food on the spoon at a time. If your loved one has difficulty opening his or her mouth wide enough, use a small, narrow spoon or even a baby spoon.
2. Serve moist or moistened foods that don't require much chewing (pureed foods, yogurt, potatoes with gravy, oatmeal, grits).
3. If necessary, remind the person to swallow. Make sure the food is swallowed before you offer more.