5 Ways to Improve Support for People with Dysphagia
Today, we highlight the importance of emotional support for individuals living with dysphagia and their loved ones. We need to break down the walls of isolation created by this condition through communication, education and support. These are also the building blocks to effect change in communities, facilities and society at large.
Here are 5 key ways to reduce the isolation created by this condition, and improve emotional well-being:
1. Empathy and Understanding: It's essential to foster an empathetic and understanding environment for individuals with dysphagia. Recognize the unique challenges and the emotional impact it may have on their daily lives.
2. Communication and Active Listening: Encourage open and honest communication. Give individuals with dysphagia the opportunity to express their feelings, frustrations, and concerns. Practice active listening to understand their experiences fully.
3. Peer Support and Community: Connecting with others who share similar experiences can be incredibly beneficial. Encourage individuals with dysphagia to join support groups, both online and offline, where they can find understanding, empathy, and practical advice. The National Foundation of Swallowing Disorders (NFOSD) offers many options for learning and sharing with others. Feeding Matters focuses on education, support, and advocacy on pediatric feeding disorders which includes dysphagia management.
4. Involving Family and Friends: Dysphagia affects not only the individual but also their immediate circle. Encourage family members and friends to educate themselves about dysphagia, its challenges, and ways to provide support. Together, we can create a strong support system.
5. Professional Support: Emotional well-being is as important as physical health. Encourage individuals with dysphagia to seek professional help if they're struggling with the impacts of dysphagia. Mental health professionals can provide guidance and coping strategies.
The concept of Savorease was developed by really listening to how dysphagia was impacting the day to day lives of our Founder's patients and specifically the emotional toll on eating enjoyment. Learn more.
Dissolvable popcorn emerged from a patient's story of wishing he could eat popcorn with his grandchildren during movie night. He was tired of applesauce that isolated him from the full movie experience with family. Now it is one of our most popular flavors and we hope it's bringing food joy and inclusivity to others!