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My mother is 63 and was recently diagnosed with stage one and its becoming really hard to take care of her as she is becoming very mean and my kids are afraid to be around her after dark.

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Hi taz1996. A friend of mine suggested that I call the doctors office first before my mothers appointment to voice my conerns., or to write a note with all of my questions / concerns and give it to the nurse or receptionist when we get to the office. It helped me tremendously. I did not feel right directly contracdicting her answers to her doctor , so this way, the doc is aware of what I see as actually going on. That was in the beginning of this. A year ago, now her , doc, and I speak openly with her about her dementia and what the meds may do to help. I think she's stage 4 Alzheimer's. She is calm though. That helps. Good luck
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My mother was diagnosed around the same age and then progressed very quickly. I was only in my twenties (I had much older parents!) and the changes were devastating to me as I was still in a part of my life that I needed my parents to be the same people as they always were. I was not ready to accept that they get older, get sick and one day will not be around. Now I am in my thirties, my mother is still around and taking enjoyment when she can. This is by no means a medical suggestion like these more knowledgeable posters have provided but TAKE SOME TIME TO PROCESS THIS. For yourself. I never did in the beginning and that resulted in bursting into tears at inappropriate times, not being able to adapt to changes that had to be made with grace and (I still feel huge guilt over this) avoiding my mother so I could pretend she was her same old self. Everyone's focus jumps to the diagnoses, what steps to take, what's next. Please slow down, take some time to process. The disease isn't going away and you need to take care of your own self and family as well.
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According to Heathline's web site, "Sundowning is a symptom of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. It’s also known as “late-day confusion.” If someone you care for has dementia, their confusion and agitation may get worse in the late afternoon and evening. ... Your loved one is most likely to experience sundowning if they have mid-stage to advanced dementia."

I agree with Pam that your mother's dementia sounds more advanced than the first stage. And I agree with those who suggest you should have your mother seen by a dementia expert at least once.

If you learn more about dementia, what to expect, and ways to handle it, you MIGHT be able to care for your mother in your home, until the most severe stages. But I don't recommend that in this case because you have children to care for also. Caring for someone with dementia takes too much out of you to do both well.

Seeing a dementia expert (behavioral neurologist or geriatric psychiatrist) may help you decide what level of care to be looking for. Once your mother is in a suitable environment, you are not done with her, of course. You will advocate for her, visit her often, show her love and comfort. It is just better to have three shifts of rested and trained people to do the hands-on care.
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Hi Taz, I was wondering if you had made an appointment with a specialist (like a neurologist specializing in dementia) for your mom? I agree with Churchmouse, that if you have young children in the house or those that visit you frequently, this is especially important. Dementia can be very scary to the young because of the chaotic nature of the disease - fine for awhile and then, perhaps, angry, confused, outbursts or 'odd' behaviours. In fact it can be scary for people of any age. Once you know what you are dealing with you can, realistically, begin to make plans. Many people want to keep their parent home and take care of them but this is a VERY hard thing to do and you need to be honest with yourself about you and your family's ability to do this. Please be gentle on yourself if you decide that you cannot do this - for whatever reason. Those of us that have done this or are doing it now (caring for them at home) often realize that they may be or would have been better to have placed their LO in a memory care center. Full-time care-giving is extremely difficult and affects everyone in the family and many just can't cope. Marriages and relationships suffer as does every member of the family individually. Please really take all of this into consideration and then do what you feel is best for all of you. Try not to let guilt make the decision for you. Blessings, Lindaz.
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It's not typical sundowning, no.

Classically, sundowning is called that because the person with dementia has sensory deprivation and, as the light fades, goes into a kind of panic. It's a description that's been around for decades, but really it applies to your standard very elderly person who's basically just conking out all round.

Your mother, on the other hand, is young for Alzheimers, and angry outbursts are often associated with loss of inhibition - the control centre of her brain being damaged by the disease. What kind of investigations were done when she was diagnosed? Are you happy with the information and support you've received from her doctor?

In any case, if you have young children in the house then, much as you want to care for your mother, they have to come first and that may mean you've no choice but to find alternative care for her. Start looking around and see what the options are.
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Thanks for the advise. Ive asked out pc doc about her angry outburst and have been told that this is sometimes considered to be sun downing. Because the angry outburst come after the sun goes down Is this true? I love her but I cant so this with her anymore. Its like living with a demon some days. I want to take care of her as long as I can but when is enough enough? She is on anti depresents but they dont seem to help anymore and she refuses to admit she has a problem at all.
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Taz was your Mum prescribed any medication? There is very occasionally a negative result of drug interaction that can affect behaviour so that is worth checking. Secondly, is your Mum actually being mean or is she angry because she is scared? You know her best. Either way you need professional intervention here and that may or may not be drug intervention. In the early stages Mum was prescribed antidepressants (Oh my ! That seems so long ago now) and they did reduce her anger and reluctance to accept that she actually had dementia - she was and still is angry and afraid some 5 years on. She has had drug intervention which has worked for her and dramatically slowed the progression of the disease but sometimes I wonder whether that was a smart move too. This is going to be a lose lose road hun so gather around you all the help you can get.
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Hi Taz, I agree with Pam. Your mom needs to be seen by a doctor who specializes in the many different forms of dementia, like a neurologist or geriontologist. Believe me there are MANY doctors who know very little about Alz and other related diseases and that's why you need her to be seen by someone specializing in this. Also be aware that many people suffering with dementia are very good at hiding (or masking) their symptoms for a short while and they can fool the doctor. Always go to the doctor's appointment with your mom so you can see and hear what is going on and don't be afraid of speaking up. Even though your mom may not like you being there or "correcting" her the doctor needs to know what is actually happening. Good luck and God bless you, the 'angry' stage is not easy for anyone.
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Your next step is to see the MD, because it sounds like she is well beyond stage one. On the seven stage scale, stage one is "no impairment"
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