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Sundowning is associated with dementia. Did the doctor suggest that your mother might be in early stages of dementia?

If your mother has always been fairly belligerent and stubborn, that may make it hard to recognize symptoms. Some of her behavior sounds self-destructive. For example, taking too much insulin, or spending money on food she doesn't need. Has she always done illogical things like that, or this part new?

Keep a list or journal of her unusual behaviors to help you and a doctor evaluate if she might have dementia. If she does, then she cannot safely manage her own medications, or drive, and she may need more monitoring/guidance than now.

Meanwhile, assume she has a mental health issue. Minimize her disturbance at the sundown time. Do not express opinions. Keep conversation light and pleasant. Perhaps don't sit in the room with her. You know this is a touchy time of day. You are the one who is mentally healthy so do what you can to keep things calm.

If she wants to buy her own groceries, could you just cut back on what you buy? (Is she safe to drive to the store?) Do you think she is forgetting what food is at home?

She can use any tax preparer she wants to. You use the one you trust.

Buying excessive amounts of food, not taking a medication that has been prescribed for her, taking more insulin than she is supposed to, using a tax preparer that is known to have made mistakes -- none of these are logical, rational decisions. And if this is because she has the beginnings of dementia, then logic and rational explanations are not going change her mind.

Instead of "Mother! We already have these groceries on hand! You didn't need to buy them again!" try "Oh, look. I see we have plenty of pasta on hand. Should I make a casserole this week?"

I think close observation and minimizing chances of conflict are the best you can do right now.
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Hi and Thanks so much for the reply it truly means a lot..Every Eve around the same time mom yells at me for whatever I say either during a conversation we are having but mostly when I voice my opinion on something then she screams at me to shut up so I walk away and call it a day..Doctor gave her a script for some Klonopin which she won't take as she feels she doesn't need it..I told him this happens every night around the same time..She has always been mean to me through the years, but it's starting to get worse..Yet I do as much as I can for her and she does the opposite..Like making an appointment to see the lab for routine lab work and then she takes 5 extra units of insulin when I mentioned to cut back and she got up feeling sick the next morning and I had to cancel as she said she didn't want to go in the first place!! Then she's going with her friend to her friends tax lady who.last year made a mistake on her return..So she's going to her again this year..It's like she's doing it for spite..I brought her to my tax lady and she had to do an amended tax return..So this year she told me to butt out and mind your own business when I tried to explain to her that this woman may do the same this year..Plus she made a mistake on my tax return as well last year and I had to do an amended return..But getting back to the sundowning..I dread when she comes home in the evening..Now we have plenty of food, Thank the Lord, but she goes out and buys more groceries and I told her we don't need them..She yelled at me again and said shut up!! So, the fact that she doesn't listen and is making poor choices because it's "her money"! Because she
can do what gets my thinking going..
Thanks for letting me vent!!
Helpful Answer (0)

Sundowning is a set of confused behaviors that persons with dementia exhibit at a fairly regular time of day. This is often at sundown or twilight, hence the name, but it could be any consistent time of day, such as usually at noon. Not all persons with dementia experience sundowning. Those who do may not experience it the entire duration of the dementia.

What is your question about sundowning, Tumbleweed39?
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