Trust Consultant Psychiatrist Mina Bobdey, a specialist in Mental Healthcare of Older People (MHCOP) featured on BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show on Thursday 20 September, offering expert advice on how people with dementia can cope with dehydration.
She discussed the issue with Lewis Hornby, the inventor of a jelly sweet which is over 90% water. He was inspired to help his grandmother, who suffers from dementia, in an attempt to get much needed fluids into her system. Mina said that ‘Lewis’s invention is brilliant. People suffering dementia forget to drink. When people don’t drink enough they are prone to infection and get confused. This can lead to people developing illnesses which may require acute care, or even hospitalisation.’
‘Drinking enough fluid is important to prevent these complications developing.’
Mina explained how all of us, as we get older, have an increased risk of dehydration, but how the risk is even greater in those coping with dementia. ‘It is about prevention,’ she said. ‘Ensuring regular intake of fluids comes down to the following five things: it aids nutrition, it prevents constipation, it replenishes, it supports pain management and it prevents health complications.’
Lewis is hoping his invention will get enough support to go into production, and to this end he has set up a crowdfunding campaign online.
The Victoria Derbyshire show, featuring Mina, can be viewed here.