Thickening for safe liquid absorption
The liquid intake through drinks is at least as important as the intake of solid food and also represents a risk not to be underestimated for people with relatively minor swallowing disorders - especially for older people and / or people with health problems.
In those affected, the swallowing reflex is only triggered with a delay, if at all - the fluid may get into the trachea. If the patient/resident cannot resolve this with the natural cough reflex, serious complications may result. This so-called "silent aspiration" can lead to the development of pneumonia.
To minimize this risk, it is necessary to adjust the consistency of the liquid. This is done with the help of speech therapists who determine the degree of swallowing disorders and recommend a certain consistency derived from them. Internationally, the consistency levels of syrup, honey and pudding have been agreed upon.
The decisive factor for reliable liquid absorption is that the corresponding consistency level is set precisely. Within the smoothfood concept, the consistency level is set using a xanthan gum-based thickener.
These have decisive advantages over the standard starch products on the market:
- Exact setting of the required consistency possible,
- No post-thickening - thus a safe swallowing experience for the affected person
- No impact on taste and colour