What is a thickener?

November 12, 2018

What is a thickener?

Thickener is added into drinks or soups to thicken the texture and help people with dysphagia swallow more safely.

Usually, foods and fluids enter the esophagus and then into the stomach for digestion to take place.

But as we age, our muscles at the throat and esophagus may grow weaker and looser, foods or water may slip into another breathing pathway called the trachea (a windpipe connecting the throat and lungs).

Unwanted substances that travel too fast and enter the lungs may cause choking and increase the risk of pneumonia (lung infection / inflammation), the top leading cause of elderly hospitalisation in Singapore.

How does thickeners work?

Thickened foods and fluids flow down your throat at a slower rate, which gives more time for your brain to tell the throat muscles: "it's time to swallow now~". This simple process activates the muscles and reduces the risk of choking.

Who requires thickeners?

Older adults with dementia may forget how to do normal activitlies of daily living, such as chewing or swallowing. Serious swallowing difficulty may also occur in patients with neurological conditions like Parkinson's disease. head or spinal cord injury, esophagal, throat and head cancer, stomach reflux and stroke. 

How will dysphagia affect my loved one?

Aside from choking and pneumonia, people with dysphagia are often dehydrated and malnourished. Hence, it is very important to choose a thickener that doesn’t only thicken beverages but also provide calories, protein and other important nutrients like fiber and essential vitamins. 

Do thickeners change the taste or smell?

So often, the word "thickener" triggers negative reactions. Images of lumpy, sticky, and starchy beverages flood our minds. The same goes for supplements. 

We hope to change your impression by introducing the world's finest and most elegant products that are guaranteed to impress. Living with dysphagia will never be the same again. 





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