Alzheimer’s and Sundowners



By Brian Ward

It’s 5:00 p.m., and all of a sudden your calm, serene mother is now very agitated, angry, and maybe even combative. Nothing you do seems to help, and quite frankly, you’re nervous and maybe even frightened. It seems as if there is nothing you can do. Take heart; you’re not alone, and there is help.

What your loved one with Alzheimer’s is experiencing is called Sundowners. It is very common for those with Alzheimer’s disease to become increasingly agitated as daylight fades away into night. Why the agitation?

Let’s use you as an example. Say you have a child in school, and everyday, you pick her up from school at 3:30 p.m. You’ve been picking her up since kindergarten, and now she is in the eighth grade. So all in all, you’ve picked her up for the better part of nine years. How would you feel, if 3:30 arrived, and you knew you had something important to do, but you couldn’t remember what it was? What if you felt a strong urge to do something, and the later it got the more agitated you became? And that’s just after a nine-year habit.

Now, let’s think about your mom. For years and years, your mom took care of the house and your dad went to work. Come sundown, it was time to begin preparationf for dinner. Taking care of husband and children was her job. It was who she was. Now, all these years later, she has Alzheimer’s disease, and with each passing day, more and more of her memory is wiped away. Now sundown comes, and she knows she should be doing something, but what is it? That’s why it’s called Sundowners Syndrome. But what can you do about it? How can you help?

There are actually several things you can do. And things you can try. Here is a list of some of some of the things that have been successful for others.

1. Before darkness approaches, make sure the house is well lit. The brightness inside, reduces the feeling of time passing.

2. Buy mini blinds that are a bright color. This also gives the illusion of daylight.

3. Think of what your loved one used to do at the time she begins to get anxious. Was it cook? Take her into the kitchen and give her something to do. Who knows? It might calm her down.

4. Calming, less exciting activities as the afternoon progresses.

Understanding what is happening to your loved one, is the beginning of the solution.

Brian Ward is the author of this article. Alzheimer’s and Sundowners. For more information go to www.alzheimerstalks.com.

Article Source: EzineArticles.com/?expert=Brian_Ward

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NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.
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