University of Limerick
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The use of sensory and chemesthetic stimuli in the treatment of oropharyngeal dysphagia: scoping practice in the UK and Ireland

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posted on 2014-10-09, 14:51 authored by Mairéad Felle
Background The research identified by the author investigated speech and language therapists‘ (SLT) decision making; there were a limited number of treatments provided to clients with dysphagia (McCurtin 2012). The use of sensory/chemesthetic stimuli helps to facilitate a swallow (Krival and Bates 2012) and may influence a clients' behaviour to positive and aversive effects associated with eating and drinking (Krival 2013); thus these stimuli may have a place in the management of clients with oropharyngeal dysphagia. Objectives Scope the use of sensory/chemesthetic stimuli in dysphagia practice, Compare demographic information and the utilization of sensory/chemesthetic stimuli, Verify the stimuli utilised, Determine if speech and language therapists‘ personal preference to tastes influences the stimuli utilised. Methods An electronic survey was used to gather information about speech and language therapists' demographics, practice behaviour and personal preferences to taste. An electronic survey tool was used to circulate the survey. Descriptive and inferential statistics were calculated. Results The survey was completed by 84 SLTs' working with clients with dysphagia. Seventy-three percent of SLTs' use sensory/chemesthetic stimuli in treatment. There were a number of factors that contributed to the use of the stimuli: dysphagia experience, percentage of clinical practice working with dysphagia and client group. The most popular stimuli utilised were sour, carbonation, sweet, bitter, spicy, specific strong tasting, salty and spicy. There was a high percentage of SLTs' that loved these tastes. Other stimuli had high preference ratings but low use in practice.






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