It is true that the prevalence of dysphagia is higher in seniors than in the younger population. Well, it’s easy to see why. As you age, your digestive system starts “giving in” and slowly you start having difficulty in chewing and swallowing. And this coupled with other conditions and illnesses develops into dysphagia, a condition where you have difficulties in swallowing food. Some of the symptoms of dysphagia include pain when swallowing, frequent heartburn, choking, gagging and sometimes completely being unable to get fluids down. These symptoms can get severe with time and can lead to malnourishment, weight loss, and poor health. Thankfully, there is a solution to this – getting dysphagia drinking cups.
|RoseCup Dysphagia Cup with Sipper||9.5|
|RoseCup Dysphagia Cup Complete Kit||9.9|
|Patterson Medical Supply Provale Dysphagia Cup||9.7|
|Sammons Preston Rije Dysphagia Cup||9.9|
|Alimed Weighted Base Dysphagia Cup||9.4|
Dysphagia cups are adaptive cups designed specifically for people with this condition. They control the number of liquids to be taken at a time. To use these dysphagia cups, tuck your chin towards your chest as you drink to allow for a normal swallowing mechanism. The way the top of the cup is shaped, the movement of the liquid should be easier. If used properly, no liquids should escape at the lips but should move to the center of the mouth.
Types of dysphagia cups
Dysphagia cups come in different styles, designs, and colors. Let’s look at some of the best dysphagia cups’ designs in the market right now.
Spout cups are designed to deliver liquid to the center of your tongue. They can be used to take water, or mild to moderate thick fluids such as yogurt and porridge. It is recommended for dysphagia patients who:
- Have a hard time bringing their lips together when using a normal cup or mug.
- Have a tongue that is either weak or slow to move.
- Have cheeks that are slow to move.
- Whose one side of the mouth is not very functional.
- Need help staying in a safe ‘chin tuck’ position when drinking fluids.
If you need to have more than one swallow to down one sip or your swallowing is slower than normal then spout cups are not ideal for you.
Cut-out cups are designed in such a way that there is space for your nose when you tip the cup. This is meant to help you keep your head and neck in a safe “chin tuck” position when drinking. Cut-out cups are ideal for taking mild to moderate thick fluids. Most cut-out cups can be squeezed to let out the thick fluid. These cups are commended for dysphagia patients who:
- Have a slower than normal swallowing rate
- Have cheeks and tongue that are either weak or move slowly
- Easily spill liquids from the edges of their cups when drinking.
- Need more than one swallow to clear one sip
- Have someone to feed them
Cups that regulate the amount of liquid per sip
These cups are the most ideal cups for dysphagia patients who may need to monitor how much liquid they take at a time to avoid choking and aspiration. They can be used with thin liquids such as water and juice as well as mildly thick fluids such as soups.
People have different hand sizes and so you want to buy a cup that has large handles. This way, you can hold the cup with your whole hand to keep it stable. Also, handles need to have a firm grip to avoid it slipping from your hands especially when holding with wet hands. If you can get a cup with extra handles, that would be the most ideal when you need someone to assist you to feed yourself.
Most people with dysphagia especially the aged do not have very stable hands and others have what is termed as hand tremors. As such, they are prone to spilling their contents and making a mess every time they are feeding themselves. To avoid all this, buy a cup with non-spill features. Look for one with a tightly fitting lid and one that even if they were to tip or knock over the cup, nothing would spill out.
Having several attachments helps you be able to feed in different positions as well as different types of fluids. For instance, with a spout attachment, you can sip your liquids in a reclined position without having to tilt your head. This prevents choking and aspiration. Other attachments that would make a dysphagia cup very functional include a straw insert, sipper, and spoon attachment. Also, having one cup that comes with several attachments is cheaper as you won’t have to buy several cups to suit different needs.
A good cup for a person who has dysphagia should ideally have an inbuilt regulator that controls how much a person can sip at a time. With the inbuilt regulator, you are able to preset the amount to be dispensed. This can be either one teaspoon (5 ml) or two teaspoons (10 ml). Once preset, the cup dispenses the amount every 2-3 seconds after placing the cup in an upright position.
Best Dysphagia Cups 2023
#1 RoseCup Dysphagia Cup with Sipper
Created and designed by a Doctor and his Nurse wife, the RoseCup dysphagia cup with sipper is the solution for people who have difficulties controlling how much liquid they can take. The soft spout ensures that you first suck before swallowing. And with this, you can only sip and swallow just the right amount. You can use the cup either when sitting up in your dining table or living room table or even when lying down in a reclined position. This can be on your recliner seat or bed.
The best part is you don’t need a cup for every liquid thick, you can use this same cup to take just about any liquid; thick or light. This can be your morning cup of freshly brewed coffee, yogurt for your mid-morning snack or evening tomato soup. You can also use it to take liquidized meals. The wide handles fit any size of hands and allow you to use either your left hand or right hand. Your caregiver can also use the third handle to assist you in feeding. Whether you have a full-time caregiver or not, you can easily fit the lid and attachments. And when used properly, there won’t be any spillage even if you accidentally drop or knock over the cup.
- Simple to use
- Easy-to-grip handles for comfortable handling and to avoid spills
- Has spill-proof lid and attachments
- Can be used when sitting in different positions
- You can use to take liquids of different thickness
- Does not have an inbuilt liquid regulator
#2 RoseCup Dysphagia Cup Complete Kit
The RoseCup is registered as a Class 1 Medical Device by TGA. It is not only designed for dysphagia patients but anyone else who has difficulties in swallowing. The cup is made from high-quality materials to last long and you can safely use it to warm your liquids in the microwave and clean it in the washing machine. Going by the numerous positive reviews, RoseCup has proved to be a valuable product. And what’s even better is that the matt finish on the lids allows you to mark the lid with personal information for each user if you have several users. The complete kit includes the following:
- An attachment spoon for those who need some feeding assistance to get the cup up.
- A sipper attachment for people who need extra flow control. Can be used for fluids of all thickness levels
- A spout attachment made of soft silicone for those with severe dysphagia and would rather suck than sip the normal way
- A flow reduction valve to be used with the sipper and the spout attachment
- One way straw insert for the sipper attachment
- A carry bag for keeping all your accessories in one place when on the go
- Comes in a carry bag for organized storage and to carry around
- Fits well into the hand
- Can be used by people of all stages of dysphagia
- Strong and durable
- Dishwasher and microwave safe
- Comes with a variety of attachments to suit different uses
- May take quite some time to learn how to fit each accessory
#3 Patterson Medical Supply Provale Dysphagia Cup
The Patterson Proval cup is another great dysphagia cup for thickened soups, yogurt, hot beverages, liquidized foods, as well as light liquids such as juice and water. It is easy to clean and even if you don’t clean it immediately after use, it won’t stain even after sitting with the contents for long. When you are ready to clean it, place it on the top rack of your dishwasher. This cup is preset to allow only 2 teaspoons (10 ml) of liquid at a time when you tilt the cup to your mouth. If this measurement is more for you, you can use the one teaspoon (5 ml) one which comes in blue color. The broad bases minimize any chances of you tipping or knocking over the cup and spilling its contents.
- Easy to clean
- Dishwasher and microwave safe
- Comes with removable handles
- You can control how much liquid to take
- The hole is very small and lets out small quantities of thickened liquids
#4 Sammons Preston Rije Dysphagia Cup
Sammons Preston Rije Dysphagia Cup is an extra-large cup that is ideal for people who need to control how much they take and swallow per sip. You can pre-set the inbuilt-regulator to only dispense a certain amount of liquid at a time from 3ml to 15ml. It will then dispense the amount every 3 seconds but you have to put the cup upright for this to happen. You can either sip from the open cup or straw that comes with the cup. Sipping from the straw prevents spillages and messes.
This dysphagia sippy cup has two large handles that any size of hands can comfortably fit when holding. The handles are easy and secure to grip while the nose cut enables one to drink without having to tilt their head to prevent choking.
- It is extra-large to take in more contents
- You can use the open cup or straw,
- Has a firm and stable grip
- Has two large handles
- Dishwasher safe and microwave safe
- Can be used for both hot and cold drinks
- The cup can only set the amount to be dispensed when the cup is placed upright. This can be very tiresome for someone with hand tremors
#5 Alimed Weighted Base Dysphagia Cup
The Weighted Base dysphagia Cup by Alimed is different from the others we’ve reviewed. It has a weighted base (the base is thicker and heavier than the upper part) which helps keep the cup balanced and steady when raised to your mouth. The cup has an oval-shaped mouth which makes it easy for you to direct liquid into your mouth. It is one of the best dysphagia cups for thickened liquids and liquidized foods. If you are only limited to using one hand, this cup would still work perfectly fine for you. It is carefully designed to enable you to sip your liquids without having to your head back excessively. This helps to prevent choking.
You can safely wash your cup in your dishwasher but you will need to carefully place it on the top rack. Also, ensure you wash immediately after every use to avoid staining.
- Dishwasher safe
- Has a weighted base to assist in self-drinking
- Easy and firm grip handles
- Large handles to fit all four fingers
- Not ideal for outdoor use as it has no lid to cover the cup
- It is hard to control the amount of liquid one has to take at a time
Dysphagia cups are a must-have for anyone who has mild to severe difficulty in swallowing. They help prevent choking, aspiration and other challenges that come with dysphagia. You also get to be in control of your feeding and are able to once again regain your independence. Being fed or needing someone to always assist you when feeding can rob you of your independence and dignity. From our buying guide and review, it shouldn’t be hard for you to pick a good cup. All these cups are made of high-quality food-grade material, are very functional and affordable.