What Are Jelly Drops
Jelly Drops are bite-sized, sugar-free sweets containing 95 per cent water and added electrolytes.
They were invented by Lewis Hornby, who was inspired by his late grandmother and her love for sweets. Lewis developed bright, raindrop-shaped sweets as an easy way to increase her daily water intake.
Lewis and his Jelly Drops team have worked alongside people with dementia, doctors and dementia psychologists to develop their fantastic product.
Lewis Hornby and his late grandmother, Pat
Alzheimers Society is delighted to have partnered with Lewis and the Jelly Drops team through our Accelerator Programme during the products development.
Since launching in July 2020, weve been excited to see Jelly Drops reaching people living with dementia who want them. Now, the team is returning with a new and improved recipe for their refreshing water sweets.
The new Jelly Drops are smoother, slightly firmer and more elastic more sweety like!
I was lucky enough to be able to taste test the new and improved Jelly Drops and thoroughly enjoyed them, said Fiona Carragher, Director of Research and Influencing at Alzheimers Society.
Not only do they have a lovely natural flavour, but its great that theyre also made with no artificial colours. Weve already seen many people living with dementia enjoy and benefit from Jelly Drops, but the teams commitment to continuing to improve their fantastic product will hopefully help Jelly Drops reach even more people in the future.
Thanks For Bringing Cheeky Laughter Back From My Mum
My mum has Dementia and her fluid intake was becoming a issue, a friend saw these and thought we would give them a try .
WOW!! My mum loves the bright colours, the smell and the texture, her water intake has increased and she looks forward to getting them, when she sees the packet, she says oh I will be having one of those sweeties then and laughs which is just a joy to see!!
I would HIGHLY recommend these to anyone in my mums position its the best decision we ever made! Thanks for bringing colour and cheeky laughter back from my mum #jellydropsweetietime.
My Grandma is loving eating the Jelly Drops
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Finally Some Good News
Jelly Drops will be available soon, which is wonderful for dementia patients everywhere! The jellies come in six bright colors and flavors, which makes them interesting and worth exploring to dementia patients. Theyre made of 90% water and contain thickening agents and electrolytes too. The gel-ness of the Jelly Drops make them accessible to those with difficulty swallowing, and electrolytes are a godsend for bodies which have already gone too long between drinks
The World Health Organization now estimates that dementia affects more than 50 million people worldwide.
While scientists race to find a cure for this terrifying condition, good samaritans like Lewis are making the time we have with our loved ones a bit more comfortable, happy and predictable. Something as simple as hydration becomes even more important as a persons body fights to find normalcy, struggles to feel clarity, and adjusts to what is reality. Thanks to these sweet little water jellies, hydration is one thing to check off the to solve list of problems that come with dementia.
Learn more about Jelly Drops here!
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Supporting Hydration With Jelly Drops
The topic of dehydration and dementia is so important. People living with dementia can struggle with their water intake, and recent research* has shown that understanding ways to stay hydrated was a real priority for them and their carers.
Which is why were so pleased to have discovered Jelly Drops. These water sweets are designed to help people increase their fluid intake 16 drops are equal to a glass of water . Backed by the Alzheimers Society and hailed as life-saving by families and carers alike, we spoke with their founder Lewis Hornby to understand how his time in a care home helped him develop this innovative hydration aid.
You can learn more about supporting hydration with Jelly Drops by watching our interview with Lewis below. Or keep reading, we go into detail on dehydration and dementia before turning our attention to the hydrating sweets that are transforming how people up their water consumption.
Want to know more about ways to keep your loved one with dementia engaged and happy? Check out our articles on puzzles for dementia or calming and stimulating activities.
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How Do Jelly Drops Work
Jelly Drops are a hydrating treat that bring fun to what can often be a challenge for people affected by dementia.
Inspired by his grandmothers love for sweets, Lewis designed Jelly Drops so they are engaging and interesting to people with dementia.
These bright, tasty treats are over 90 per cent water, with added ingredients to make them even more hydrating. The drops attract the attention of people with dementia and the firm drop shape makes them easy to pick up.
A full box of Jelly Drops is the same as drinking three cups of water which is more than many people with dementia currently consume a day.
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Jelly Drops Alternatives For Dehydration
Jelly Drops are considered by some to be the solution to dehydration among seniors, particularly seniors who have Alzheimers Disease and related dementia. After all, they were created by Lewis Hornby who wanted his beloved grandmother with Alzheimers disease to increase her daily water intake.
He created a recipe that essentially made a gummy with 0.416 ounces of water, gums and binders, flavors and preservatives, and no sugar that you could hold easily in your hand. One tray of 24 jelly drops gives patients with Alzheimers disease 300 ml water, equivalent to 1.25 cups of water.
For anyone who has worked with people who have Alzheimers, this seems like a great solution. Getting the individual to focus on drinking a glass of water could be near impossible. Then that leads to dehydration, constipation, etc. But if you could just hand them a gummy to pop in their mouth easy! And if its the only thing that gets them to consume water, then it must be okay.
Well, it depends on what view you are taking. If you are talking to someone well-versed in food ingredients, health and their potential harm in the body, Jelly Drops may not be your best choice. Forget the fact that the Alzheimers Society has supported the development of the product and the company has won over 15 awards for design, innovation, and social impact .
Lets examine this in depth with some detail and see really what jelly drops are.
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The Real Cost Of Jelly Drops
The price, as of this writing, for a single tray of Jelly Drops is 7.95 British Pounds or about $11.09 total in USD . The price is lower when you buy more, set up a recurring buy, etc.
Where one Jelly Drop contains 12.5 ml of water, a tray of 24 is going to contain 300 ml of water. Now lets do some math here.
- One tray of Jelly Drops costs about $11.09 USD.
- One tray of Jelly Drops contains 1.25 cups of water.
- One gallon of water contains 16 cups.
- 12.8 trays of Jelly Drops equals 1 gallon of water .
This means 1 gallon of water consumed through Jelly Drops will cost a whopping $141.95 USD !
You can lower that total by buying in bulk, but the fact remains getting fluids through Jelly Drops is very expensive.
The Story Of Jelly Drops
Lewis Hornby invented Jelly Drops after his grandmother ended up in the emergency room with dehydration. He knew she loved sweets, and he used that knowledge to develop Jelly Drops.
The candies were an instant hit with elderly people and their caretakers. Jelly Drops have received awards and recognition from a slew of organizations, including the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Alzheimers Society, the European Investment Bank and the Helen Hamlyn Center for Design.
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Daily Life With Dementia
When you have dementia, things big and small become a struggle. Remembering who your loved ones are is one of the more visible and difficult signs of dementia, but something as simple as remembering to drink water is one of the more immediate struggles. Depending on how dementia affects a person, remembering to drink water might not be as much of a problem as swallowing is. In a cruel twist, medications meant to alleviate the symptoms of dementia can cause dehydration.
This is sad, and scary, and probably something you dont want to think too much about. Luckily, Lewis Hornby did all the legwork on this one, and now Jelly Drops are here. What are they? Think along the lines of itty-bitty bright and delicious edible water jellies. After his grandmother Pat was rushed to the hospital with severe dehydration, he knew he didnt want to see this happen to her, or anyone else, ever again. So he hatched a plan. The Hydrate Pat Plan.
Mr. Hornby did a stellar job on the research and product development of Jelly Drops. He learned all the facts and figures he could about dementia, even employing virtual reality and sensory deprivation tools to gain a deeper understanding of what happens in the minds and bodies of patients. Immersing himself in practical study, he also spent time living in the nursing home with Pat, learning from doctors their thoughts on how to help this cause of preventing dehydration.
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Foods With High Water Content
If a senior has an aversion to fruits and vegetables, especially when they are uncooked, high water content foods like crudités, salads or gazpacho may be an unrealistic approach. Instead, adding healthy ingredients into foods they already enjoy can yield small victories for a caregiver. Try adding fresh berries to a loved ones yogurt, cereal or dessert, or including slices of tomato and a few leaves of lettuce in wraps and sandwiches. These may not seem like meaningful additions, but every little bit adds up. Incorporating these items on a daily basis can help your loved one prevent dehydration without significantly changing the amount of liquid they drink.
While these helpful guidelines make good health sense, they are general recommendations. It is important to stay in communication with your loved ones doctor and keep in mind that managing some chronic medical conditions, such as heart failure and kidney or liver disease, may require intentional restrictions of fluid intake.
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Symptoms Of Dehydration In Elderly
Dehydration can make the symptoms of dementia worse by increasing your loved ones levels of confusion, concentration and irritability. They are at a higher risk of falling over and it can also lead to more urinary tract infections.
Look out for these telltale signs and symptoms of dehydration:
- Dry mouth, tongue and lips
- Sunken eyes
- Dizziness when they stand up
- Dark urine
Considering how much time our loved ones can spend in bed or sitting down, its important for them to be comfortable. Weve written about the best beds and bed aids, as well as a guide to choosing the right riser recliner chair.
The Importance Of Staying Hydrated
Many with dementia no longer feel thirst, don’t recognise cups, or don’t have the dexterity to hold them.
The impact of inadequate hydration can include:
- Dizziness increasing the risks of falls
- Increased urinary tract infections, Incontinence
- Acute Kidney Injury
- Increased risk of drug interactions and side effects
- Reductions in cognitive ability
- Increases risk of clots and heart attacks
- Two fold increase in death rate in stroke patient
- Poor oral health
- Pressure ulcers and sore dry skin
– NHS Hydration Toolkit
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Get Your Free Tray Of Jelly Drops
Get your first tray of Jelly Drops for free, when you subscribe. You only need to pay the postage.
If they’re not for you, its no problem – you can cancel for free at any time, even before your first pack.
- Free tray sent within 1 working day
- First subscription box sent 7 days later, unless cancelled
- Subscription boxes contain 7 trays & ships every 4 weeks – Want more?
- Each delivery costs £39.90 + £6.95 shipping
- Absolutely no contracts, no fees & no penalties
Nering With Jelly Drops To Stop Dehydration In Dementia
Jelly Drops are sweets containing 90 per cent water that can keep people with dementia hydrated. Alzheimers Society is partnering with the Jelly Drops team through our Accelerator Programme.
Jelly Drops were invented by Lewis Hornby after his grandmother with dementia was sadly hospitalised with dehydration. Lewis went on to develop this innovative solution inspired by his grandmother.
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Dementia And Water Consumption
Jelly Drops can be a treat, or used daily its up to you. But there are other ways that could work to encourage your loved one to boost their water intake.
- Frequent prompts to drink: If they arent remembering to drink, then prompts throughout the day can help. Depending on their level of cognition, this could range from phone calls to remind them to taking water to them and helping them drink.
- Bright cups and glasses: Adapted cups that are lightweight and bright are easier for your loved one to spot, pick up and drink from. Blue crockery and drinkware have been created especially for people with dementia.
- Offer foods high in water: Cube and freeze watermelon, or cut up cucumber into finger food sizes. Other fruit and veg with a high water content are berries, grapes, tomato and apple. Or go for soup and ice lollies, both of which have lots of water in too.
- Make flavoured water: Make water look and taste more appealing, with lemon slices or mint sprigs. Even adding ice cubes can make the drink appear fresh and more likely to be drunk.
- Speak with their GP: Your elderly parents doctor may be able to review their medication or provide some individual advice on ways to increase hydration.