Hello! A Little background. I am The primary caretaker for my grandparents who are 94 and 89. My grandfather has mid-stage dementia. He takes various medications for it including an antipsychotic that is supposed to put him to sleep and stop delusions.

This evening, I decided to stay the night at grandma and grandpas house because we have an early morning appointment. Over the last couple days my grandma has been complaining that my grandfather has been chatting with her all night and not letting her sleep. She wouldn't get into the details, she just said he was up talking.

well, tonight I left my room to go to the bathroom around 1 AM and heard them arguing. He was accusing her of cheating and she was denying denying it, which is not a new theme for their arguments or his delusions. His delusions frequently follow that line of thinking.

My question is, do I intervene? If I were to say something, to go into the room at 1:45 in the morning and try and stop that, would that be a smart idea? I mostly worried about going in there and grandpa seeing it as something sneaky going on and getting into paranoia/delusion spiral. I'm worried it may make things worse.

If I don't to do anything, things will probably be OK. My grandma can hold her own and grandpa will eventually fall asleep. I just hate the idea of sitting here in my room while my grandmother is being tormented in the next room.

Of course there is going to be a call to the doc in the morning, but I'm just curious as to any suggestions how to defuse the situation if anyone thinks it's appropriate to do. I will obviously keep an ear out and stay up for a bit to make sure things don't escalate into a fight, although I don't think GrandpA is at the point Where he is ready to get physical about this sort of thing.

Thanks for any advice you may have. What a terrible disease...

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I really wouldn't intervene, except - as you already are doing - to keep one ear open for sounds of serious trouble. If you think it's miserable having to hear this much, just imagine how you'd feel if Grandpa decided you were the guilty co-respondent party. Stay out of it. And start looking around for facilities now so that you're ready to move Grandpa as soon as Grandma gives the word.
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What a terrible disease indeed. The delusion of infidelity of a spouse is, unfortunately, fairly common.

I would say that the drug grampa is taking is not working. Perhaps he needs a different drug or an adjustment to the dose. The antipsychotic my husband took allowed him to sleep through the night. Don't blame the doctor -- coming up with effective drugs in the right dose is a huge challenge in dementia -- but certainly talk to the doctor about what is going on.

I don't know that you showing up would diffuse the situation or make it worse. Doctors aren't the only ones challenged by how to best treat persons with dementia!

How about a compromise between intervening and leaving them alone? What if you knocked on the door and said something like, "I'm going to have some ice cream/tea/hot chocolate/whatever. Would you like me to bring you some?" This would be trying for a diversion, which is frequently advised during a delusion.

I really think trying to get some medical help for dear grandpa to sleep through the night is the primary approach to take.
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