Confusion, extreme confusion, often comes during late afternoon or at night for those with Alzheimer’s and so that’s why it’s called sundowning. Lately, we’ve seen it come and go at all times of day, with no predictable time frame.
Watching a loved one fret and worry is exhausting for the loved one with Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia and for those of us who care for them. As the mind whirls into a vortex of unpredictability, thoughts firing at random, words tumbling out nonsensically, a helplessness sinks in and an urgency to help in any way possible to allow for peace and tranquility.
When sleep can be encouraged, it seems to dilute the chaos in their minds, allowing our loved one a little peace. Changing the subject to one of love and beauty helps as well, but sometimes that button cannot be unpushed, the channel cannot be changed and we all whirl in the frenzy for a bit.
Have you ever experienced this as a caregiver of a loved one?
It’s not easy to remain untouched by the emotionality of the situation, let alone what is unknowingly coming out of their mouth. Thoughts flicker, reality surges and fades and my heart breaks wide open with sadness for I cannot even begin to fathom how hard this is for her, let alone for me.
This disease is just so hard and old age, as the adage goes, ‘ain’t for sissies.’