The right utensils can increase a person’s ability to feed himself or herself, or simply make your job easier when assisting. We tested several utensils and one key difference in comfort is the handle’s design. Some utensils we tried had hard, uncomfortable plastic handles. And others, believe it or not, had soft handles that only covered part of the utensil (though you couldn’t tell from the manufacturer’s marketing photographs), making the utensil awkward to hold. Less expensive utensils had sharper metal edges – not recommended for sensitive teeth and gums.
Many online companies carry a wide variety of helpful utensils, so we’re only including a few products that are attractive, comfortable to hold and worth the money.
TIP Later on in the disease, it’s more helpful to use only a spoon for serving if there is confusion over which utensil to use. Also, eating from a spoon is easier than eating from a fork.
HOT TARGET Multi Purpose Utensils
These stainless steel utensils, with their soft, rubber-like large handles, are available with special features to meet various needs. Each utensil has a special twist built into the metal shaft that allows the fork or spoon to be bent for either right- or -left handed use; this is helpful for persons who can no longer turn the utensil towards their mouth and are trying to eat from the edge.
These utensils have one of the most comfortable handles we tested: soft rubber-like handle with extra cushioning “fins” where the fingers grasp.
- All utensils have a bendable rubber shaft so you can bend it – though it takes a bit of force.
- Available with a coated spoon for sensitive gums (available in 3 different sizes).
- Available with an extra 6 oz. of weight in the handle for those with tremors.
- Dishwasher safe (except for the coated spoon)
- Available in one color only
- Weighted utensils may be too heavy or not heavy enough for effective use
- Discoloration may occur on the coated spoon (for example, tomato sauce left a bit of color on our test spoon)
Kinsman Stainless Steel Weighted Utensils
Solid stainless steel utensils for people with mild tremors. The extra weight provides more control, as it can reduce unwanted movement. Each utensil weighs approximately 7.3 ounces.
- Attractive “normal” design
- Indentation on handles increases comfort
- Spoon’s recessed edge and slightly deeper bowl may prevent spilling
- Solid handles
- Dishwasher safe
- The utensils may be too heavy or not heavy enough for effective use
Product Selection Criteria
Our goal is to teach you how to be a good consumer and to help you learn about specific products and unique product features that may enhance your safety and the safety and function of the person with dementia. The products shown in This Caring Home serve as examples only. Manufacturers continually change product specifications and the products represented may be different from those now on the market.
We realize this is not an all-inclusive list. Products featured in This Caring Home were chosen for one or more of the following reasons:
- Color selection
- Ease of use
We encourage you to discuss product selection with other caregivers and health care professionals.
- Potential safety issues