How do you help your parent when they are sundowning?


My mom cries non-stop and gets very sad and angry. The nurses give her Ativan to calm her, but I feel so sad and guilty.

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GladImHere is exactly right. Don't feel guilty about this. Sundowning is an unfortunate part of dementia for some elders, and as confusing and upsetting as it is for us to see it, I can only imagine it must be doubly so for the elderly person experiencing it. They don't know what they're doing, why they're doing it, and don't remember it the next morning.

Just hang in there and keep doing what you're doing. As Glad said above, you're doing the best you can, and Mom seems to be in good hands.
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Is the Ativan working? If not, talk to her doc about trying something else. Chances are these behaviors would occur no matter where she is. It is part of dementia for many, and very hard for family and caregivers.

You have nothing to feel guilty about. She is receiving good care, isn't she? Better than you would be able to provide? Just visit her and love her. You are doing the best you can.
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