Anybody that has ever cared for an Alzheimer’s or Dementia patient probably will be familiar with the so called ‘ Sundowning” or ” Sundowner’s Syndrome “.
In essence, the tendency for agitation and restlessness can be dramatically increased in the afternoon early evening hours.
Symptoms can range from being stubborn and experiencing mood swings all the way to hallucinations and violence. Some typical sundowning behaviors for alzheimer and dementia are:
- Hiding Things
These episodes can vary greatly in their severity and don’t have to last all night.
Knowing that the burden that care givers for dementia and Alzheimer’s patients have can be multiplied during the night time the Hebrew Home offers ElderServe at Night.
One of the most unique programs in the country, it’s kind of a “night camp” for dementia patients who don’t sleep at night or tend to wake up agitated or become frightened or disoriented by the fall of darkness.
It’s meant to provide lots of activity – to fill the wee hours for people with Alzheimer’s and similar diseases who live at home. And it’s meant to provide their caregivers – usually a son or daughter – with a treasured night’s sleep.
Here is a very personal account from Charles chronicling his Sundowner Road trip with Millie, his wife who is afflicted with dementia. As a matter of fact his blog is a stunningly beautiful testament for the love of his wife.