What does food taste like for your senior lately? If she’s mentioning that foods she normally enjoys taste weird or odd, she may be experiencing a changed sense of taste. There’s a lot that can go into that.
Your Senior’s Sense of Taste Can Fade
Sense of taste seems like something that would remain rather static over the course of your senior’s life, but it doesn’t. There are lots of reasons that your elderly family member’s sense of taste changes and some of those reasons have to do with how her brain processes the data that her taste buds send her. Other reasons are a little more complicated.
Smell Is Closely Related to Taste
Your senior’s sense of smell, for instance, is closely tied to her sense of taste. That’s easy to forget, but when your elderly family member doesn’t process smells like she used to, that can also have a big impact on how food tastes. Sometimes you can help that by bumping up the flavor profiles of her foods and using more varied herbs and spices. But if your senior’s taste issues are a result of difficulty processing smell, there may not be a lot you can do, especially if her sense of smell is hampered because of a physical change.
Some Health Issues Affect Taste
There are also health issues that can temporarily or permanently affect how taste works for your senior. For instance, your senior may develop sinus infections and those can create big problems when it comes to tasting foods. If the sinus infections are chronic and almost impossible to eradicate, then your senior may go for long periods of time being unable to taste her foods well. This can be really frustrating for her.
Medication Side Effects Can Affect Taste
Some medications may resolve health issues, but have side effects related to taste. If a different medication or dosage can still help your senior, that may be an option. But if that’s not possible, your elderly family member may simply have to get used to the new way she experiences some foods. Sometimes those side effects are temporary and fade while your senior adjusts to the medication. Other side effects may not fade unless your senior stops taking the medication.
Beyond these issues, your senior may have other reasons for having trouble eating. Elder care providers can help her to solve those problems, whether they’re related to needing physical help with cooking or simply needing a friendly face to sit with them while they eat.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elder care in Colts Neck, NJ, please contact the caring staff at Lares Home Care 888-492-3538 or 732-566-1112.