Teresa takes back control of her life!
For some people, food, (cooking and eating), is an exciting and enjoyable part of their day. For others, food is simply a fuel to keep us alive. But for Teresa, food can be a challenge that controls how she lives her life every single day.
Teresa has Prader-Willi syndrome, a rare genetic condition that causes behavioural challenges, physical and learning difficulties. Her condition can have a huge impact on her life. It affects her daily routine, her food and fluid intake, and her cognitions, which can impact things we may take for granted like making decisions.
Teresa joined Voyage Care to get the support she needs to take back control and start enjoying her life again. She now lives happily at Parkbrook Lodge, one of our residential care homes in Staffordshire, where her dedicated support team have helped change her life for the better!
Successfully identifying triggers
It took Teresa and her support team patience and perseverance to achieve the balanced life that she has today. When Teresa first moved to Parkbrook Lodge in 2010, she displayed some challenging behaviours and needed a lot of support in managing them.
A key symptom of Prader-Willi syndrome is an increased appetite. Many people with the condition never feel full and this is something Teresa struggles with. Teresa’s team’s biggest challenge was identifying triggers around food that would help towards helping her to balance her nutrition. First, they tried including Teresa in the kitchen activities, such as helping to prepare her own meals, but this exposure to food caused her to react negatively and would have a lasting impact on her for days after.
Improving Teresa’s relationship with food
With Teresa’s triggers successfully identified, her support team put together a support plan that enabled her to approach food and nutrition with more confidence and reassurance. It was now time for Teresa to take back control!
In collaboration with Teresa and her family, our team created a calorie-controlled meal plan that would help Teresa to achieve a balanced diet that would see her thrive! Teresa doesn’t have any input in her day-to-day meal preparation and planning, but she knows she will eat meals that she enjoys.
Getting her life back
Having a controlled meal plan has eased a lot of Teresa’s anxiety and obsession surrounding food. Her challenging behaviours have reduced as she no longer worries about mealtimes. She no longer feels the need to frequently go into the kitchen, which has had such a positive impact on her daily life – especially on day trips away.
Teresa has become more active and walks long distances every day to help reduce her anxiety and keep herself healthy – She’s now one of the fittest Prader-Willi individuals her support workers have met!
A happy, healthy future
Through Teresa’s determination and the care and dedication of her support team, her future is happy and healthy, with lots of exciting adventures to look forward to!
“We have all learnt a great deal from Teresa. She’s showed us that with the right support system in place, you can overcome anything and can have the best quality of life. Nothing happens overnight; it takes time to get where we are today, but it is worth it!”Carmen Banson, Teresa’s support worker.
Learn more about specialist Prader-Willi support
To learn more about how we support people with Prader-Willi syndrome to live healthy, fulfilling lives, visit our dedicated webpage.