Did you know that 500 death certificates per year mention dehydration? This silent killer can be the cause of so many fatal health problems in elderly people including falls and kidney problems all as a result of dehydration.
We're all aware of how important it is to stay hydrated throughout the day, with the EFSA recommending men intake an average of 2 liters of water per day with women at 1.7 liters which is equivalent to seven to eight glasses per day. Sadly, research has found that patients in care homes and hospitals were only drinking an average of three to five glasses per day.
Elderly people are often vulnerable due to physiological changes in the ageing process, whilst mental and physical frailty can further increase risk of dehydration. Patients suffering from health conditions such as Dementia, Diabetes, Parkinson’s, Arthritis & Alzheimer’s can also struggle with keeping their hydration levels up.
Droplet® is a cup and mug, specially designed to support anybody who might be struggling to keep themselves well hydrated. Comprising a three-part modular system: Light and Sound Reminder Base, Mug/Cup & Flow Control lid, the heart of Droplet® is the highly sophisticated base that identifies when the user has not drunk for some time and uses flashing lights and recorded audio messages to remind the person to take a drink. As well as benefitting the user, it also alerts the carer so they can monitor hydration levels and patterns in patients whilst spotting the signs of potential dehydration early on.
Other key design features include:
- The Droplet® Mug, Tumbler and Lid is made from Tritan™ which is scratch, shatter, odour and stain resistant and it can be easily cleaned in a dishwasher.
- The Droplet® Mug features a broad stable base and chunky open ended handle, whilst being lightweight & comfortable to use, allowing people with weak or swollen hands to easily grip the handle or body of the mug with one or both hands.
- The Droplet® Mug and Tumbler have discreet measuring lines at 100ml and 200ml help carers record fluid levels and make thickened drinks.
- The Droplet® Mug and Tumbler insulates the heat of the drink which means users can hold the cup without burning their hands.
- A Droplet® Flow Control Lid provides dignified support to those who suffer from tremors or swallowing problems. It easily clips on and off the Droplet® Mug or Droplet® Tumbler and has a hole for either a Pat Saunders straw or a regular straw.
- The Droplet® Flow Control Lid has a discreet recessed spout that controls the flow of liquids including stage 2 thickened drinks and is made from Tritan™ for extra durability.
- Designed with Speech and Language Therapists, who have stressed the importance of the user drinking normally. When the user drinks from the Droplet® Flow Control Lid they will not need to learn a new way of drinking.
The clever cup was created by Ellie Van Leeuwen who was inspired to design Droplet® after her own grandmother left hospital severely dehydrated. Droplet® is already been welcomed into care homes and hospitals. Initial trials showed a 63% increase (an extra 500ml a day) in people drinking more, showcasing Droplet as an efficient and cost-effective method of improving hydration levels and health.
Commenting on the launch, Ellie said: “I wanted to create a product that made it easier for patients to self-hydrate, but also supported healthcare professionals in spotting the signs of dehydration. I’m so proud to see Droplet® supporting hydration innovation in hospitals and care homes and it’s wonderful to see patients and carers benefiting so greatly from it. The success of our initial trials and the feedback we’ve had from both senior healthcare professionals and patients has been phenomenal. Droplet® has the power to create substantial change to the way we view and manage hydration.”