Symptoms of Sundowners can be varied but the key is that the symptoms occur in the late afternoon or evening, or in the case of someone with more severe dementia, the symptoms worsen at night. These symptoms, which are also symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease and other types of dementia,

These symptoms can be dangerous, both for the person with the Syndrome and for anyone around them. There are multiple publications and web sources which include instruction and real world experience in caring for someone with sundowners or dementia. Please see our caregivers guide for more information.

You may find that your loved one is suddenly seeing angels in the room or believes you have stolen something. They may not recognize you or become terrified at the thought of your leaving even for a moment. The behavior is illogical and irrational, but bear in mind that someone with the symptoms of sundowners cannot control these behaviors.

Wandering is especially dangerous because the person with Sundowner’s will suddenly be missing and may not know where he or she is going or why. Without identification, people with the Syndrome have become lost and unable to find their way back home.

  • Rapid mood changes
  • Anger
  • Crying
  • Agitation
  • Pacing
  • Fear
  • Depression
  • Stubbornness
  • Restlessness
  • Rocking

The most difficult symptoms of sundowners to deal with are:

  • Hallucinations
  • Hiding Things
  • Paranoia
  • Violence
  • Wandering

People with Sundowner’s Syndrome may also “shadow” you, following you around and doing everything you do. They might ask you questions over and over or interrupt you when you’re speaking to someone else. They may lose their full language abilities, and abstract thoughts may become especially difficult for them to comprehend.

Keep in mind that if someone has a paranoid or hallucinatory episode, there’s no point in trying to convince them they’re wrong. It simply won’t work, and they will most likely not remember the episode in the morning. These can be considered symptoms of sundowners. For more clarification on the matter, please consult an eldercare professional.

168 replies on “Symptoms”

It is so sad to read all of the above. Needles to say my mother who will be 90 in August and has lived with me for the past 12 years is experiencing most of what hasbeen mentioned. Reading all the comments have helped me to understand my mother a little better. I still work full-time and have cared for my husband who had a stroke and a cardiac arrest last May, had to place him in a nursing home for rehabilitation. He has been taken to the hospital by ambulance three times since he came home with lung/breathing problems; water retention in the lungs. He is also a diabetic. My mother has a provider 5 hours a day 6 days a week during the day while I am at work and seems to be fine, but as soon as the sun goes down she turns into a different person. I am reading for the first time about Sundowners Syndrome and now I can understand mother so much better. I want to place her in Assisted Living or Nursing Home, but she refuses and I cannot count on her because she works too. what am I to do? She gets up in the middle of the night comes and knocks on my door wanting to eat and says she was not fed during the day, uses abusive language telling what an ingrate I am and how I take things from her room, her relatives come in the middle of the night to sleep in the spare bedroom and are taking her money (according to her). I have had to take medication to be able to sleep and frankly I do not know how much longer I can take this. But I guess I must continue the good Lord for endurance and strength, for He never gives us anymore than what we can take.

My Mom has been dealing with my StepDad for about 10 years now. The anger has always been there but his is complete rage.And then destruction of objects.He has also harmed family pets resulting in death!! We have moved in with them and everyday it’s starts the same within minutes of him being awake he looks for something to be angry with.The worst part is he first lays in bed awake at all hours cursing under his breath he gets louder and louder waking my Mom thus depriving her of sleep.This household is in complete stress and sadness..I believe he has some symptoms however I think he has always been a very angry individual and age has intensified the behavior. .Another problem here in California my Mom isn’t even allowed to discuss problems with the family doctor because of Hepa laws.And of course he will not tell the doctor that anything is wrong. .It is pretty upsetting that you fear someone that your supposed to love..Any advice or words of encouragement would be greatly appreciated. .

Karen, I work in healthcare. You can get meds for your Dad. Find a Geriatric Specialist and tell him your concerns. HIPAA laws can be applied differently in family situations where there is fear of imminent danger. Also, get some pure lavendar oil from a health foods store. Put it on a hanky and put the hanky in your dad’s pocket. It has amazing calming effect. Repeat the oil everyday. BLESSINGS!

Call the police when he gets that way they can have him commited for three days for eval.. we had to do it with my dad when he attacked her because he thought she was having an ORGY of all things at 72!!….sorry i know that’s hard but to get past hipa its’s what you have to do….I’m a medical professional it’s the only way around it if he won’t sign the papers…Hipa is federal so it’s not Cali’s fault.

If you or your mother reports violence. A Healthcare professional like myself Has to by law in any 50 U.S. States report to the correct authorities this will help instead of hinder. This i promise.

Hi I’m new to this but my mom is having hallucinations memory problems forgetting things losing things and says her dead relatives are sitting with her at night she also doesn’t know the differentiations between day and night she keeps getting dressed at night we have been to doctors and are waiting for a brain scan but the situation is getting worse

Karen, I really feel for you. I take care of my Mom that has dementia and shes a handful sometimes shes like taking care of a child sometimes. My Dad had full blown dementia 10 years ago and he got violent too. does your Dad have dementia or Alzheimers or is he just angry all the time when they are in their full alzheimers state they get violent and anything sets them off he did that with my Mom. he had it for 6 years and he passed away from Alzheimers. this double whammy of my Mom and Dad scares me because I am the first born and I hope it skipped over me. if your Dad gets violent call that proper authorities you shouldnt have to live like that. it will drive you nuts. and your Mom too. will pray for peace for you and your Mom.

Karen…. that’s so awful that you went thru it with both your parents. You and I have a lot in common. My dad has something called Frontal Lobe Lewy Body Dementia and hallucinates and has delusions of people trying to hurt him. It’s heartbreaking. Now my mom is showing signs of memory problems and personality changes (she says cruel things to me and it’s like she has no filter). But I can’t get her to go get diagnosed from a doctor because if I just mention her memory or personality changes she gets mad! And now she won’t go to the doctor because she finds fault with all of them. So I don’t know what to do……

Ladies, Our ability’s to handle the needs of our people will vary from day to day and sometimes moment to moment. The serious nature of their illness calls for everything we have to offer. Sometimes it doesn’t seem like enough. It is.

Hi, Thanks for giving folks like me a chance to talk about things going on with their loved ones who have Dementia and Sundowner’s. I have read most posts however, I have not read one with quite the same problems I am facing with my Dad. My Dad is 86 and is once again has been admitted to a psych hospital. My Dad’s Dementia and Sundowner’s has progressed to a chronic repeated cycle of psych hospital admissions. Dad had been in an extremely nice nursing home for the past year. During this time of one year, he has had over a dozen psych evaluations and admissions. He is very non-compliant with taking meds and constantly refuses them. He says he hates me and threatens to kill me and my family. He has even tried to attack and hit us at the nursing home when we went to visit him. He is constantly threatening suicide and making threats toward others. Every time he makes a threat it results in another psych stay. He has a fixation that another family member is going to take him home and care for him, which is totally false, but he believes it to be true. He constantly want to go home (which has been sold to pay for his nursing home care.) His anger and aggression has now escalated to the point that he struck another resident in the nursing home. Of course, they now consider him too great of a risk and will not allow him to return. This was just 3 weeks ago. So while at that psych hospital, it was decided by their placement specialist that my Dad no longer needed to be in a skilled care facility, but in a memory care home. I called nearly every day to this hospital asking about my Dad’s placement and discharge. I was not notified until the night before his discharge of where he was to be going. I was extremely pressured to sign my Dad in this memory care home because as the director put it “you really don’t have many choices”. I don’t know what this placement specialist did to get paid for, but she certainly did nothing to help me place my Dad in a place that truly met his needs. Three days after his discharge from the psych hospital and his admission into the memory care home, I get a call that Dad is refusing his meds and meals and “could I come and have a conversation with him”. Since I am aware of the scope of his aggression, how he curses me, threatens me and attempts to attack me, I agreed to a conversation with my Dad only with supervision so that I may be protected. That “conversation” never occurred, before the meeting was set up, I received another call stating they were needing permission to send my Dad out AGAIN to another psych hospital that he was again threatening suicide. The memory care home didn’t mention the fact to me that he also made threats to the staff and tried to throw a chair through a window in an attempt to “break out of there”. I got that bit of info from the psych hospital. Of course, the memory care home will currently agree to take him back-they want his money !!! But, once his money is all gone and he is once again Medicaid eligible (they do not take Medicare or Medicaid) I will be forced to find him placement into another facility. Now does this really sound like they have my Dad’s best interest in mind, knowing it will take until his money runs how for him to adjust being there, if he ever does? The problem is where will I place him when he money runs out ? Nobody wants to take him because he is aggressive, violent, and non-compliant. I like others in this post, had to place my loved one in a nursing home because they became impossible to properly care for at home. I had an extremely hard time getting the nursing home that he was in for the past year to accept him because of his aggressive and non-compliant behavior he had displayed in a medical hospital and rehab following a broken hip. This nursing home wanted my Dad to be admitted to a permanent state psych hospital because of his behavior and constant readmissions to psych hospitals. Of course, all the psych hospitals except the one state hospital, are acute care and the course of treatment always results in the same manner-adjust his meds for the 14 days he is there and send him on his way knowing he will be back in few days. His hospitalizations are a constant chronic cycle and are like a revolving door. I feel like nothing is getting accomplished in all these hospital stays. I feel like a lone cry in the darkness and no one else knows what I am going through. This is not who my Dad is. This ugly behavior he is displaying are demons calling themselves Dementia and Sundowner’s. My Dad is very loving, gentle, kind and caring man whom I still love deeply and want the very best for, because he always gave me the best he could. I pray to God that he will give me strength and keep strong. I also pray for wisdom in battling these horrible demons who are trying to take my Dad from me. Today, I walk through high briars. I may become wounded, but wounds heal and become scars, the briars will bloom and someday I will harvest sweet berries. Thanks again for allowing me share my story and tears.-Dazzlindachshundmom

Hi Dazzlindachshunom! My heart goes out to you and your dad. I see how much you love him, the real him! You can remember how he was before and wish he would change back. Have they ever given him melatonin? If not you should speak to his doctor there about it. I researched it online, using good websites like You should look up dementia and melatonin there. It doesn’t hurt to try one dose. The strength my mom-in-law was given is 6 mg. the very first night she had her evening meds she was as sweet as honey! My husband is so nervous, it’s hard for him to see her make a complete 180 degree turn!! I had to ask him, do you want your mom to be the way she was before? Yelling, screaming, hitting, scratching, digging her nails into him. She also swore worse than a sailor, and verbally abused him! I wish I had an abortion, I wish you were never born! He was always her favorite. Maybe this is why the rest of his family stays away. The only time they come over is to try to get money from her. Thankfully, she doesn’t have immediate access to her money or it would all be spent! I’m so sorry for your pain. Please try the melatonin and let me know how it worked!

one word seroquel it’s an antipsychotic given that works in about 20 minutes……it’s not recommended for elderly but my father had Lewy body dementia it was the ONLY thing that stopped his aggression and allowed others to feel safe around him he was 6’4 and 240 when he went into a rage there was no stopping him…he was also a kind loving attentive father it is hard to live with and accept he died 6 years ago it’s hard to remember him without all that seeping in and i know your pain thankfully my mother’s case is much easier to cope with.

My prayers are with you and your dad. My mom is very combative with her dementia. She was in a nursing home fir the past 9 months until I went to bring her home with me. Probably a huge mistake but I’m trying. The home was a joke and she has no care. Prayers to you for patience…

Hi, Dazzlind….

I just read your comment and certainly understand all of your emotions. My mother is in an aggressive state of Alzheimer’s; however, I’ve chosen to keep her home as I work a full-time job. My sister has her one week, and I the next. While we do have a provider, during the day, it’s extremely hard to keep someone, due to the various behaviors described. It’s even more difficult to come home from work and pick up the task as she sleeps most of the day and is up most of the night. I try to educate the ladies that assist us as awareness and understanding are key. Either way you look at it, it’s a difficult difficult task. I pray a lot, constantly research sites, and work very hard to keep myself emotionally and physically balanced. I just want to encourage you to keep your head high and know that you are not in this alone. Many of us share your frustrations. God sees and hears all. When you’ve done all that you know to do, trust that He’ll take care of the rest, as He honors what we do. I am keeping you, and all others here, lifted in prayer.

I am glad I found this Page, I went back to bed but couldt’t sleep, feeling real bad after hearing my Sister & her daughter and others siding with my mother that I am acting mean & evil because I am sick, well, we had never been close, so I am not really surprise, But what surprise me is that my sister is A educated person who has worked with patients over thirty years, She new before I did that my mother was experiencing some Demencia & Sundowns condition, and she use her to talk about, while I am doing the best that I can to care for her at home,I thank God that I see many are Praying people, I am A prayer warrior also and agree with you no matter how bad the situation is that Prayer Is the answer, Because it leads straight to God almighty who can change any thing. my prayer’s goes out to All, With Love.

My heart goes out to you… thank you for shating. Hugs!
Trying to learn more on Dementia, and was told about Sundowner Syndrome. My big sister is getting worst. TY!

My brother passed away a few years back and he had schizophrenia. The medications helped his aggressive behavior. My mother has later stages of dementia and had bouts of sundowners. She too! is taking medication to control that. She is taking Neudexta with Aricept. You did not mention the medication he is taking. They have attorneys for seniors to protect them. Have you ever contacted the Alzheimer’s association or The alliance for the aging. There are people out there who care.

My mother was doing this. I started giving her melatonin at night and she started sleeping through the night. But after a recent hospital visit she was not doing well so I took her off to see if it made a difference. She started getting up at night again. So I am going back to the melatonin so I can sleep again. She liked the melatonin gummies. Thought they were candy. Give an hour to hour and a half before bedtime. I got her on my schedule this way.

My now deceased ex husband had full blown,paranoid schizophrenia. My mom has alzhiemers and dimentia now . Im her only full time care giver ,living with my mom who is 76 years old . It seems like im dealing with a female version of my ex 99 % of the time . The symptoms are pretty similar . Its starting to take a great toll on me emotionally and physically and mentally and physiologically. God please let them discover a cure for this horrible disease ASAP.

I’m so sorry u have to go though this… I’m starting to think my mom is getting this way as she gets older she is 68 and blames me for hurting her dogs all the time , I wouldn’t hurt a fly!! She lives w me and my husband and it’s getting very very hard!! Now she had a big fight w me this morning and said so many hurtful things that she can never take back.. I don’t know what to do.

Hello I’m an in home health care provider you may want to look into a program that can keep her home and provide you with a PCA its 1 on 1 care Depending on her income you can receive benefits at no cost or little ,nursing homes won’t tell you about this program because they want your money iv worked as a CNA I a few the ratio can be 8 to 20 residents to one depending on your state. Look into the NHTD nursing home transition diversion program . I hope this information helps you best of luck .

Sometimes the plate is bigger than anyone can handle! This disease is so unfair and betrays all the love and trust leaving mayhem and devastation for those that love them, some information I got after months of mistakes ie not correcting or just informing them of something which is viewed as an “argument”. The thought of this disease tripling in the next 30 years leaves me in disbelief as to why so many are in this path.

This is not a fair comment I have lived with a schiprenic as well medication does wonders…having to care for someone round the clock who you love and was always the strongest person or figure in your life is very hard. Suddenly the the person you love has no idea who you are or are accusing you of things you did not mother once told the doc i hit her…try and get out of that one…she ran into a doorway and didn’t remember. I am truly sorry you had to go through that as a kid..but don’t act like ;you have a monopoly on misery..Caretaking steals you life 24/7 I just got down raising my kids and boom i’m raising my mother…Don’t judge I have no life and am pretty sure i never will because it has been stolen from me by an aging parent. Just when you think it’s over or getting better WHAM there it is…….sucking your soul

I’m just now entering the world of dementia with my dad and I’m already feeling overwhelmed. He has grown worse in just a matter of 1 yr and 8 months he’s gone from a stage one to a stage 5. I work full time and now I have him to care for. I admire anyone who can care for their parent for so many years. I only hope I can stay as strong as you. 😉

My sister and I have been taking care of my Mom I live here at the house my sister works full time and has her own place. My Mom is now in the beginning stages of sundowners syndrome. just now she was up at 1 0 clock am and wanted to get something to eat and get the newspaper. she thinks its the morning. she did this a lot when I first came here. she thinks I have only been here 2 weeks and I have been here for two and a half years. My husband lives in another state where I lived and we seem to have a handle on it. it took a long time to realize that the world does not revolve around him. the only complaint I have is I dont get enough sleep and I refuse to take medication. it seems some days I wake more tired than I went to bed. I go to a support group and 2 ladies just put their husbands in assisted living after taking care of them for 20 years. I asked one what she wants to do she said gets 20 years worth of sleep. I totally agree. when you have a good support system like I have it makes it easier. I have learned that immensely. take care.

To Mary T. Morris, The lady you were replying to sounds like she is desperately looking for help and I can sympathize with her there a lot of people here that need some help with elderly people. I think you’re in the wrong place you need to go try and get your sympathy with younger people that had schizophrenic and their caregivers. You sound like you’re looking for sympathy, well that’s not what this lady is looking for here . she’s looking for help and if you don’t have it and it’s probably best not to say anything. I think you’re a bit rude and I think you’re in the wrong place.

I struggled with this for five mom came to live with me for three years…and one day it came to me…the things my mom said to me when she was in her right mind….I took to heart…
She said never let me be a burden on my children I have lived my life, my family, it will be time for you to live yours..
She said put me in a home…her exact words….I found a little more active than most…my mom blossomed…she found a man friend..that just adored her everyday…he was constant ally petting her and telling her how much he loves her…The activity group named them king and queen of the day…took them out in there gown and tucks for an elegant evening…beautiful..
So you see it is not all bad it can actually be fun…I picked her dress and took pics…She is very happy..Today she turns 86 yrs old…and I am taking cake and Ice Cream to celebrate…Don’t feel can be a pleasant experience for her and you..
It really takes a staff to take care of them…cook..clean..laundry…so get some help…Medicare is a great resource…

Best of luck Rebecca

So glad your mom is doing well ! My dad is 74 and I think he is having dementia symptoms….calling me telling me that he thinks upstairs neigbors are watching him with cameras and says ” see the holes in the ceiling?” they are spying on me with devices !” I am worried and scared for him .

S0rry you had to deal with that. But it’s not a competition for who had it worse. Watching your parent or grandparent decline from dementia is nothing to scoff at. Unlike schizophrenia, dementia always ends in death (but not before stealing the person’s memory, personality, independence & dignity).

Hopefully one day there will be a cure for ALL brain diseases. Until then, we must support and be compassionate with each other. We’re allies, not enemies.

I wish u the best!!!! This is one truly awful diease there is no cure for!!! My grandmother is so the verge !!! And has started accusing me it’s awful !!! I work I the nursing field aND see it every day!!!

Exactly. Not a competition. People find this website because they are trying to find answers, ideas, help, compassion or whatever. I hope everone on here finds something that helps them.

I was an Administrator for Assisted Livings. I have to say, one of the saddest things I observed was the guilt family members felt for “putting” their loved ones in an assisted living. It’s probably one of the best things you can do for them. More often then not, they adjust beautifully! The staff is trained to be their friend and care for them. I found most staff had very caring hearts. Guilt is not your friend. You can visit any time! I remember the kids telling me they didn’t think their parents would adjust well. Many times, it was as if they were emerging from a cacoon! Making new friends and enjoying the activities. I’m just say’in!!

Hi Lupita

Thank you for your comments. I have a 93 year old mother who in the past 4 wks has gone from being “ok” to she’s paranoid if I go out for more the half hour. I understand what’s happening.
I’m alone working and have a great aide when I am out.In the evenings my mother is constantly walking or not going to sleep till 11 for me thats late I need sleep. I’m doing the best I can right now–I have siblings but my brothers will come visit for a few hours and my sister has said I cannot take our mother for the weekend. My mother may go today tomorrow or next year but everyone answers to God one day.

I’m sorry for what you went thru with your brother, but I think it is unfair and…. well…. rude to put other people’s suffering down as less important. No one has the right to compare and belittle someone else’s suffering. You may see YOUR circumstance as the worst but you don’t truly know what these people that share on here go thru. The purpose of this message board is support….. not comparison. You come across with the attitude “I believe I have it worse than you so suck it up”. Shame on you.

Hi, I’m just passing thru, but found this all very interesting. But, What if she just possibly had been trying to say, (but in wrong choice of words), ” Keep your chin up, and remember to tell yourself, that there are many people out there , that have it worse than me.”

You see, I can’t even find the best way to say what I am trying to say.

I’m just saying!!! God Bless You ALL

This is not about who has had it rougher this is about helping people , patient’s and caregivers with sunflowers. That is the topic. One level can be worse than others and vise versa. With that said I’m sorry for what you had to deal with as a lot of us have but ease respect the fact that this is about helping people just like you with something with ways that have been learned and be considerate of all problems not just one or the other. We all suffer so it’s not fair to say, yeah try going through what I went through…i thought it was a rude statement considering this is a sundowers forum and you are almost mocking it. I hope your life is better now and surely hope you have found some peace somewhere as we all deserve. God zbless

Well I’m glad your mother is doing well with it my mother was diagnosed at 50 years old with early onset Alzheimer’s and my dad passed away a littl over 3 years ago so I’m 40 and her only child and it’s all on my shoulders now but in the last two months she’s starting to cry several times a day and it hurts me came someone troll me why this is happening or is she just getting closer to the end of her battle please any info will be appreciated and please no sugar coating it cause I’d rather be a little more prepared

Dear Mary-It is so cruel my husband of 43 years had a brain injury that stole his memory,retention and therefore motivation-he was a clever master carpenter and could turn his hand to any trade. He never got rich and decided he would make furniture after retirement for our holidays. He wasn’t able to due to the accident. He is now rapidly declining with dementia the last 16 months. It is breaking my heart and I don’t know how long I can manage at home with his behavior and symptoms. I am grieving for him and my mother who died in June and no-one to stay with him. Medecine helped for a while but when it wore off the meds were doubled and he got severe stomach trouble so we are back to just an aricept equivalent and back to incessant talking 3/4 of it nonsense and the rest mixed up. He turns into Mr ,Hyde thumps and kicks things has threatened me on rising and after naps and is angry and insults me and swears other times so upset and says he’ sdisappearing and a few happy hours still mixed up but his previous personality.with husband. I couldn’t go to mother’s bedside in another country and my friends there had to bury her for me. I am neither a saint or a martyr and I am trying my best. I cry the rare times I am on my own which is the car going to work -Ihave worked 6-7 days a week to support us for 81/2 years. I am losing him and I will feel so bad if he has to go into a home but I am alone -no family. I have friends but I am so tired and emotionally feel awful. No-one should judge anyone else until they have walked a mile in their shoes. I’ve been round all agencies and govt and yes he can have help or a home but only if I keep my income very low
I say my prayers and wish I was stronger and better at it. Losing my mental health and finess.

I too am facing the same thing with my mother, and I have to say,, reading this article has opened my eyes to alot, & how I need to go about handling it. I had a more assertive approach, for my mother is usually very strong, and it was difficult to accept & understand that, Being mentally & physically mobile is a part of her that has sadly changed. The more people share the more helpful it is to understand, Thank you for sharing. I wonder, are there any foods or medications she can consume to help reverse the process?

This is not a competition. There’s always people out there who have it harder, tougher, rougher,, but that does not diminish the seriousness or importance of this person’s issues.

I am going through the exact same thing with my mom..She just turns at dark into someone I dont know,wandering, hiding things.hallucinating,sleeping in strange places, but only happens in the evening, during the day she is fine, she lives in a senior building in her own apartment, but I am worried for her and other tenants, who now think she’s a lunatic.Had mri nothing unusual, so off to a see a neurologist…

Reading this makes me wonder about my very best friend. She is like a sister to me and is a very accomplished attorney we decided to become roommates about 6 years ago. I am currently going through the wringer i have heart trouble have to have heart surgery and she is becoming someone i dont recognize. She has always been so kind and giving and warm. Now she is condescending, rude, she says bad things about people and judges them for things she too has done making her hypocritical and she says things to me like if you didnt have to have anesthesia, i would have let you go to your heart cath alone, she wants me to go to every emergency she has and then will not come to the hospital when im being admitted with sepsis. She has bad knees but refuses to get anything done about it but i cannot get her to move. She wont bathe, she will not go out to eat leaving the house to her is now something she hates. She will not cook, clean, do her dishes or her laundry she will set in the same clothes for weeks at a time. What has happened to my best friend of 26 years she is not even a shadow of the person she was. She has a huge purse and will set with it in her lap at all times. Someone will take her pills or money she says. I dont know much about this but if anyone thinks they might even know what has happened to my friend or if there is any hope, please email me at Thank you for listening.

God Bless YOU. Your an Angel.
My Mom has Dementia, she was put into an Assisted living facility against her will. I would do anything for her to spend her final time with me.

This is for elder parents for the kids to voice & get suggestions
NOT for you to tell us how bad you had it as a child. Think of your parents I’m sure they were the caregiver not you until then keep those thoughts to a different web site. This is for elders

I hear everyone’s pain.after my grandfather died I moved in with grandma to put her mind at ease.shes paranoid about being alone,even when she was younger.i have been with her 12 years.she is 97 now.her body is spectacular according to her age(that’s because I have always pushed proper nutrition and vitamins). But her mind is going fast.i think she has sundowners.she goes 4-5 days sleeping all night until next day at 3:00 p.m. then she will stay up and stare a ceiling and not sleep for 2 days.she will get out of bed @ 7:00a.m. and start flooding my phone at work with ridiculous calls about nothing.then comes the hostile,abrasive voice mails.saying I am useless,I don’t care because I don’t call her back etc… When I get home from work the real hell,and horror starts.complains about everything,tells me bank stole all her money,all her relatives that she has pushed away are trying to mess with her etc…(very paranoid delusional).then after that my turn comes.she just belittled,and tortures me psychologically.saying may God strike me dead for supposedly lying to her.saying I am just living with her for a free ride.saying the cops in town think I am a no good loser because I am abusive towards her.then I try to calm her down with her meds,then she gets loopy.telling me her husband’s alive,also she thinks I am her son and not her grandson.she keeps reliving things from 30 years ago.i am up all night with this stuff.i try to go to bed for work the next day,but she bangs on my door several times.i have missed multiple days from work and lastly I have to hide all bills,statements,and documents,because when I am at work she starts going through everything(even from 10-15 years ago). She doesn’t understand anything about bills or money,because my grandfather did it all,then I came along and took over.she looks at everything and thinks creditors,banks or vendors are stealing from her.she calls bank,phone company,cable company,town hall etc… All day long.she argues with them,and has no clue what she is saying so when I get home after a 10.5 hour day at work,I have to deal with all that.finally after 2 days of this she starts to go back to normal then she doesn’t remember any of it.she is really good and pleasent to be around when her mind is normal.i usually use this time to relax and rest up,because I know I have another wild ride coming up in a few days.i pray to the good Lord for guidance through the situations

My mother is 80 years old and i believe she is suffering from sun downers. for the past two years she has experienced horrific hallucinations including visions, believing someone is in the attic and under the house. She smells what she calls drugs, she believes people are spraying her with drugs through the vents. She lives alone and is fully able to care for herself, cook – clean – bathe- and is generally very sharp mentally with both short term and long term memory in tact. My father passed away 4 years ago, the first year and a half she did very well resting at night , then she had a horrible nightmare then all began to change. She refuses to discuss her experiences with her doctor, my sisters and I do not know what to do..I welcome counsel on how to best care for my dear mother.

Hi Tammy, I am sorry you Mom is going through that. My mom was having the same problem, and I started leaving her bathroom light on at night, and it helped sooo much! But, just the other night she started up again seeing things in her room. so, Now, I am just dealing with it as I have before. I have a Baby Monitor in her room, so if she needs me, she calls me. My Mother is also very sharp in the head, but as the night comes, all that changes. My Mother will be 87 in July…I am so glad she is still doing as well as she does. I do have to help her dress, and I cook for her, and clean up after her, so it is different. But, I would just keep checking in with her in the evenings. They don’t like to tell their Doctors anything at this point. They are just done being poked, and prodded. Good Luck Dear…..Barb

hello, I am not sure if anyone is going thru what I am going with my 86 yr old mom. I don’t even know if it is sundown but she is in a nursing home and for the past month her depression is worsening. All she does is complain, cries, and is uncontroling. The staff is unable to meet her needs and all they want to to is prescribe pyscotic pills tah have millions of side effects. She is on the lowest dose of ativan but now they want to give her surroquil. She was on geodon but when i looked online i basically thought i am giving my mom an early trip to her tomb and discontinue it. Please does anyone have any suggestions as to what i can do. She has had a blood hemorage in the brain back in 08, hypertension, diabetes,. I feel so depress myself as I have 3 children myself and I have no siblings , no family that is there for us and so ican get advice. This is driving me crazy to see my mom this way

Hi Diana, I am in the same situation. all our family is gone or live in other states. I know how you feel. I have job that has been very busy. My son is in the Marine Corp and is in Ca. for now. My older daughter works and has a family, and my other daughter has bi polar issues and really is no help. All my mother does is cry, feels scared, no one visits during the week and she gets lonely. Sometimes I feel so guilty but what can one do. I pray to Our Lady of Guadalupe for strength. Just have to remember we are doing our best and that has to count for something. I took my mother off all those drugs as well.She is on a low dose of Ativan too.I will keep you in my prayers.

Sundowners syndrome is what might what she have. If she should be on a depression drug, she should be on something mild like Zoloft, start at a low dose then can be increased if necessary. She can always come off it later with no side effects. No long term effects.

Please do not let them give your mom seroqual . It’s a horrific drug that just shuts them up. I worked in psychiatric medicine for years and the minute a patient was admitted and on that medication… We detoxed them off. Do your best with anti anxiety meds and reach out to the community for resources.. I’m taking care of my mom too (86) and its all just a nitemare.. Bless you and hugs

I just wanna give you guys some praise. I lost my mother when i was 19 i am now 47. I had the best mom in the world so had she lived i might be going through this with her. Sometimes in life we need to hear good job! Job well done. As you know in life people tend to point out what you do wrong not what you do right. So give yourselves a hand. Job well done for you guys that take care of the elderly.

My mother is 86 & doing very well considering she has congestive heart failure & blood pressure problems. Recently she was hospitalised with severe trigeminal neuralgia. The hallucinations started in the emergency department after morphine. After being moved to a ward and given a sleeping pill, the visions & terrible nightmares started. I stayed with her all night. In the morning I refused to let anyone give her any more meds. She wasnt in pain any more & hallucinations had gone. That night she had another sleeping tablet with more horrific nightmares. Check any medications she’s on. They can react with one another or it can be withdrawal as a particular medication wears off.
My mum is home again living independently whereas doctors said that wouldnt be possible. She is not taking any of the meds prescribed in the hospital although she is still under a specialist for her heart failure. Too much sugar & not enough protein or water in the diet can cause major sleep problems. Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause mental confusion & all elderly people do better with digestive enzymes to help them get nutrients from their food as this ability declines with age. Get a medical power of attorney for your mum & do a lot of research. Hope things improve for you.

Seeking Counsel my father is doing the exact same things your mother was doing. Can you give an update on the treatment that occurred and how she is doing now.

Have her tested first for a UTI. My elderly mother hallucinates and acts strange when she has one. The elderly do not feel the burning sensation like younger people do. It gets worse and goes throughout their system. I was also told the elderly do not feel thirst. You have to encourage them to drink. Dehydration can also cause hallucinations. Hope this helps; I’m living this nightmare!

I had to put my Mom in the hospital last week She became so angry most of the time would say hateful horrible things and tried to drive off and she is legally blind

I have been crying for days I went to the hospital again today and they are trying all kinds of tests to see what it is She says she hates me for putting her in there and probably can never come home again

I have put my life on hold for over 15 years she is now 85

I would do anything for my Mom but the hatefulness is awful and her arguing about everything

They said it was dementia but a lot of other things are starting to crop up also

I have no family support for when my Dad died about 3 years ago the family split wide open The others took everything they could as fast as they could of my Dad’s

I have such guilt but I needed professional help with my Mom so very bad She can appear so sweet to others when she wants and then with me it is like Cujo I had to even record her on my cell phone when she would throw her tyrants so people would believe me

This is horrible I feel so guilty but I have no choice My health is starting to really suffer now from the stress

I believe in God with all my heart I pray that he will guide me through this rough time

I thought I could always take care of my Mom till the dementia got bad She thinks everyone is out to get her and that everything is stupid and never has anything nice to say about anyone

I told her today again at the hospital I love you Mom and she just glared at me She said you are responsible for putting me in the nut ward I told her she told me and others she wanted to commit suicide and she was hearing voices and music after 3 pm

I tried to focus her back on the fact the doctors decided that she needed to be evaluated and put her in there but she has total hatred for me right now

To all that have had to go through this God Bless You


Dear Joy,

Please do not blame yourself. Unfortunately if your mom follows my dad’s pattern, it is not going to stop there. She will eventually become aggressive and violent, and for her sake, and yours, you have done the best thing! You have cared for her for the past 15 years, and done verything that you could, and it now time that the professionals take over and do for her what they can. Rather have quality time with her, and know that the nasty person that she has become, is not your mother. If your mother’s brain was still whole, she would be shocked at the way she was behaving. She is very lucky to have had you for all this time, and you have been a wonderfull daughter. Please do not beat yourself up because you cannot cope anymore! You did so for so long! I admire you for what you have done. I only lasted for about 9 months, and the only reason why my dad is going to a home with professional care is because he has become dangerous to himself and others.

I greatly admire you for having lasted so long! You deserve a medal for all of this! God bless, and try to get some rest and take time for yourself.


I feel for you my sister’s mother in-law has sundowners right now she is in assisted living,but it was a total nightmare! We live in a apartment in her back yard,and she would come over all hours of the night beating on are door accusing us of talking about her it just got worse it turned into we were stealing from her threating to burn her house down! It was just a total nightmare! No end! Her 2 boys was in denial.her oldest son finally took her to the er and well they told him. I do not ever want to deal with it again! I can only imagine it happening to ur mother good luck and God bless!

Joy, you just described my mom. My dad died three years ago and after about two months she started accusing everyone – my family mostly as we lived next door and took care of her and dad – of stealing everything from her. from her hearing aides to all of dad’s tools he used to have when he worked as a carpenter. My brother said to just return what I took, problem was, I didn’t take anything! Then she accused my husband of having killed dad, my kids of stealing her grocery money, camcorder, clothes. . . You name it, we probably stole it. We had to move away to keep my sanity and my brother became her main caretaker. He still thinks there is nothing wrong with her. I don’t understand where he is coming from. She now hears loud Christian music all the time, says it keeps her up at night. and that the neighbors are piping it into her house and yelling at her at night. My brother moved her to an elderly apartment complex and she says they don’t like her and are stealing from her. I don’t know how this will end, but mom is 86 and in good physical health and now wants to get out of the apartment and in her own house again. She refuses to come and live with me or my brother so that we could take care of her. And I hate to admit, I am not sure I could handle it if she did. . . But I always swore I would never put my parents in a home.

Connie, My mom has many of the same behaviors. After my dad passed away two years ago, her paranoia got extreme and she began calling police almost every night saying her apartment neighbors were breaking in while she was out and taking her clothes and jewelry. She seemed normal to her friends most of the time, but she continued to accuse neighbors of the craziest things, until my sister and I had to move her to an assisted living apartment, as she was also not taking her meds correctly. She lived there 9 months and is now in a nursing home after she began having extreme hallucinations, saying a man and woman were trying to break in and take her purse, clothes or shoes. She would also say that she could hear voices coming through the vents. Her doctor prescribed Haldol to treat the hallucinations, as she began to get aggressive and would push or hit my sister and I and was verbally abusive. The strange thing about all this is my sister and I have been recalling that my mom has had some of these behaviors most of her life. They are getting worse at this time of her life, but she has always had paranoia and has accused people of breaking into her house and very bad mood swings. We’ve come to the conclusion that she should have been on medication a long time ago. One of the doctors has diagnosed her as bipolar along with dementia, and I believe she has been bipolar most of her life, she was just never diagnosed. Be glad you have many good memories of your mom as she was. Just keep praying for strength and relief for your mom. Best of luck and God Bless.

You are doing a good job with your mother yet I do have to say as much as we love them dementia is apart of most peoples life when they are old…
It is best for you to understand you can not change it yet have time out for yourself…
It may sound cruel yet you are still of sound mind and need to stay strong in this life situation…
Your mother will continue on like this to her time has come for rest and just listening to her and agreeing is not easy yet I do this with my mother and she is happy with the out come..
I look at it as long as she is happy and reasonable content I have done my job.
I am not saying this is right of me yet I cope this way and she is happy with my pretend …every now and then I have time out to realise I am a person and have my own needs…
I step out side the circle and enjoy my life just like she did in her own early days in life…
I am not apart of what is going on in her head yet I am supportive towards her feelings and try to understand as much as I can…
I do not see it as lying yet see this is a condition I can not take away as much as I want to .

It is a very difficult situation. One that very few can handle even with family, friends, Drs etc. This is now their life. It has changed totally. It is heartbreakin to see your loved one change so drastically. Now is the time to do your best with them, and sometimes that means getting them ALL that they need, which very often means a Staff, Drs. 24/7 care by people who are not exhausted, I am speaking of professional help. There comes a time when you realize you can’t do it all. Even with help from family. Your loved ones Now have a different life, a life totally different than yours. It will Never be like it was. Remember the good things..your loved ones as they were..not who the disease has made. Be kind, compassionate, loving and sincere to them and when it’s time…get them the around the clock staff.. and continue to live your life, Your loved one now has a different life…seperate from yours…a this point I know your loved one’s would understand you having to find a care facility. They love you and want YOU to have a life! Do not feel guilty. You have done all that you can and now you must find professional help so your loved ones get the 24 hour care the so desperately need now. Now just keep and eye on medications that are prescribed, level of care, compassion, kindness, patients that they receive on your visits. God Bless

My only child at age 30 was in coma for 7yrs after auto accident. I had to make a choice of trying to keep her home or get sub acute care…I chose the care..with me making sure she had the right place and staff. We were lucky to find a fantastic place that specialized in brain injuries. I realize now…I would have been exhausted and what kind of care would she receive if there is only me to do it all. I felt like I was being selfish for doing this at the time her life had changed completely and one day I realized that it was her life that changed and not mine…I had to go on for grandaughter…and rest of family…My prayers go out to all who are selflessly doing their best!!

God Bless YOU. Your an Angel.
My Mom has Dementia, she was put into an Assisted living facility against her will. I would do anything for her to spend her final time with me.

Hang in there. You are the only one who can help your mom by making her go to a facility. Do not listen to anyone else!!! Visit your mom every day if you can and start to live your life. I’m in same boat but have a pyschiatric background. Still doesn’t make it any better!! Only do your best. Your moms words and actions are caused by a brain defect and is not her fault… Cherish the good days and put the bad days behind you. Bless you.

Omg I read your story it is exactly what I’m going though now my mum was my best friend and she started to change calling telling me I’m stealing her things she went missing for 9 hrs and was found knocking on doors 30km away she then started walking to my place in the middle of the night bagging on my door yelling for me to give her stuff back she is in hospital now and hates me for putting her there she just screams to get me to leave doctor say I can’t see her cause she gets too upset I’m devastated I have seen my mum 3 times a week and talked to her everyday of my life on the phone and now she hates me it is killing me I’m now at breaking point your story has helped me but it really hurts how I have lost my mum

Your Mum has a brain disorder. She does NOT hate you sweetie! It is not her saying these things, its the disorder. Please remember this. I understand what the Drs are doing, they want her calm, none of this is your fault.I know it must be so hurtful to actually hear her say things. You must constantly remind yourself of the love you both had before this. Those are the memories you want to keep.

Your not alone. During my teens to 20’s. The same thing happen to mom, her state of mind started to worsen a lot thru 2000’s but 2005.
Boy! did it just go south. During the 2005 -2007 she would threaten my younger sister and dad. She did try to kill my dad twice. And she did get my younger sister and was choking dead. I rush to stop and get her off her. But she had her good. i did called the cops. In which she let go.
She was a danger, besides saying horrible/hateful things, She was abusive most of the times. she would try to get anything to throw at you. She treated her family (us) like shit. She refuse to take showers, she would horde trash, cover the windows, didn’t let anyone use the kitchen. We had to hide the knifes and any sharp objects. She would refuse her medications, throw them down the toilet. She would see things, talk to her self, one day she nailed a sheet to the ceiling which if turn into a big hole. She’s would say or would do anything to you.
The only thing that would kill us was getting the right help. In CA since there’s a law that supposedly the mentality unstable have to admit that they need help in order to be helped. Which it made it hard for us, she would appear like an angel with other ppl and show the doctor she was fine. We did try to put her in a facility. Cops were called countless times cause of the things that when down. There was one time the cop did show up and to check on us, he did come in the house, idk what my mom saw. But she attack the cop, so they took her. I apologize to the cop. They put in a facility but they let her go. Cause she was well behaving, with a bus pass to get home. My mom remember how to get home well muscle memory. Since we live at the area for quite a few years. During the time she was in the facility we could breathe and rest easy. But when we found out they let her out we freak. I was young not the best environment to grow up in. In the end her brother and sisters took her in. She wanted to go with them. They put in a facility. Different state.

my father has a severe cause of sd… he is 80 years old, he sleeps in his chair on and off during the day. i try to keep him awake as much as possible in hopes that he will have a good nights sleep. impossible. we live in a 2 story townhouse, which has very steep stairs. i have documented 15 trips up and down these stairs while on pain medicine as well as sleep medication.
after a recent fall, thank god, only bout 5 steps, he injured his neck and wore a brace for about a month. during this time, i rearranged the living area downstairs and relocated his bed. that lasted for about a week. i made a deal with him that i would move his bed back upstairs if he would let me put a gate at the top of the stairs for his safe being and would be latched only after all his medication had been taken and he started feeling the affect. he would beg me to open it so he could continue to travel up and down. my brothers said it was cruel so i removed it. i have 3 brothers. 1 lives out of state, 2 are 40 minutes from us. i get 0 help from either brother and 1 will not even call.
dad wonders alot at night, follows me everywhere i go in the house, worries bout the mail everyday, very stubborn, and has hid thing that he cant remember where he hid them…. he has started loseing his abality to make sentences and carry on a conversation..
am i supposed to let him continue the travel up and down the stairs? i am scared to death im gonna wake up one morning and find him at the end of the stairs

Does anyone know if Sundowners can start in someone as young as 65? My mother has lived alone since my Dad passed away 4 years ago. During the evening when I speak to her on the phone our converstations start very nice. However somewhere in the middle she will begin to call me names, and not seem to understand that I am telling her she isn’t being nice. She will also tell me terrible things that she says my Dad said about me or my Husband, despite knowing my Dad would have never said those things. She claims to sometimes recall it, but only when reminded, and other times she makes an excuse as to why she can’t remember. She complains about people stealing her medications, and things that I don’t think even have value for other’s to steal. I am very concerend for My Mother as at first it made me Mad that she was saying these terrible things to me, but something seemed off. If anyone know’s of anyone having problems at the age of 65 living totally alone please share your story. Thanks, and Good Luck to Everyone.

I don’t know if this will help but my sister in law is in her early 60’s and had fought with depression for over a year and had a manic state that almost sent her to the psych ward. After some testing they found out her heart was going into a-fib and it was causing her brain to be starved of oxygen. This was causing her to say things to her husband that were mean and hurtful. And to her sister in law (a nurse)who was trying to help her. It has taken them another year to get that stabilized in some form. She had several of those “breaks” during this past year as she could not tell when her heart was going into a-fib. There were no physical symptoms she could feel. She just would suddenly go off, so to speak. Would begin as a manic state and escalate to not making any sense at all and just rambling the most awful things. Just one more thing that can cause confusion in our brains…

To all the other folks reading this page, my heart goes out to you. I found this page while researching sundowners. Was just told today the nursing home my stepmom is in told my sister she was showing signs of sundowners. She was just admitted on the 9th of this month to a hospital for an eval of her mental state. Dr’s said she had dementia and needed 24 hr care in skilled facility. We had her transferred to be closer to my sister and I. Now that I’ve been reading this page I’m concerned they jumped the gun as she had a UTI when they admitted her. I will find out tomorrow what meds they have her on and if they got rid of her UTI.

I don’t no if my mother has sundowner or not, but she’s fine doing the day. she goes to the store, church, cooks, every thing a normal person does. But at night she stays up all night long worrying about here health, busy checking here boold pressure every ten minitues. then that leads to here anixity. every thing starts at night. Depresion, Restlessness, Fear, and now I’ll notice that she is forgeting to pay certian bills and the worse of all hiding things like here money or bank card and other important documents. I don’t no what to do but to move here in with me so that i can keep here in sight pluse other family memeber that stays with me will help out. but I am suprise that the Doctors does not notices that seems that she been 11 times to the emergancy room night after night with in a month. don’t no what else to do help for any comments.

I care for a 102 year old amazing woman. My husband and I have helped her since her husband dies 30 years ago. Her health has been great up until the last 2 years. She had a heart attach the day before she turned 100. We had to put her into assisted living at the age of 100 and they “kicked her out” because she kept wandering at night and would walk out of the facility setting off alarms. She would wander away from the facility in the late afternoons and get lost. (The assisted living she was in was a limited staffed facility and did not have a locked unit) We have moved her to a nursing home that has an assisted living level that does have the capability of monitoring that she does not wander and get lost. Recently they have been taking her out for rides in the car and going to parades. Now she is becoming angry because she wants to go home. (home to her is her home she sold 40 years ago). It is becoming very difficult for me to handle her anger, when we have always been her advocate for her and her helper. She has no family, no nieces, nephews anyone to help her so we must continue. I think my visits to the home are reminding her of her old place she lived and it is causing her more anxiety. Do I discontinue to visit her? We love her dearly and take care of her the best we can. We are not her blood relatives but we are the only family she has. Her attorney has looked for someone related and there is no one. She made my husband and I her power of attorney when she became ill on her 100th birthday. Up to that date she had never been hospitalized and only took a baby aspirin a day her entire life. It is very difficult to see her mind go. Her general physical health is very good. One other change is she has started to carry a teddy bear around everywhere she goes and she is now trying to feed it real food. This began approx 3 months ago.

My mother has started to display many of the above mentioned symptoms.she accuses my niece of stealing from her. she swears my daughter is engaged to be married. has fierce hatred for my sister inlaw. with the onset of nightfall she becomes angry at the smallest of things, wanders upstairs where she could fall. she seems to focus most of her anger towards my sister and Brother who are her main care providers. There is one difference she doesnt seem to want anyone around ? is this out of the norm.

I have the distinct pleasure and responsibility of watching a friends mother several days a week.
She is 93 and still in it…!!
I am going to try and make some cookies or bake in the evenings when I am there and see if this perks her up. I think the loss of one sense can be made up for by sparking up another.
I am praying for more’s about all I can do and it seems to really help.
Thanks, mary

my mom had. heart attack in July, she was in 2 convelesent homed and she was not eating, telling strange storeys etc. she has been home now since sept and was doing good with a cna 7 days ask 10 hrs a day. as of yest. she has been very agitated confused and anxious. I think she night have a uti. she was prescribed ativan 2 days ago and has gotten worse. can someone give me dome suggestions please!! thank you god bless you all!! Judy

just got back from my moms dr. he said she has vascular dementia. can anyone tell me about this please..!!! she also has had a heart attack, which within two months was walking but has had 3 or more uti’s. shes not the vibrant spunky mom I use to have but I am blessed to have her at all. She has been pacing confused and irritable more now than in July. any input would be helpful. thank you, God bless!!! judy hull

My grandmother who is 83 years old has in the past couple of weeks begun to talk about another home that she says she has and wants to go to. She lives in her own home with my great aunt. My mother has been taking my grandmother to the doctor and caring for her and recently hired a lady to be there during the day to help out with my grandmothers personal needs as my grandmother cannot walk.

As I mentioned, my grandmother has been talking about a house she wants to. No one knows about this house. My grandmother has lived in her present home, which she built, for about 30 years. She does not recognize her home anymore. At first we would answer “what house are you talking about” or “there is no other house” because we did not know what what she was talking about. She began to feel that we all thought something was wrong with her. We have always talked to her in a respectful and caring manner. Now we agree with her and when she asks to go to the other house, we tell her ok, but right now it is too cold to go out. She even asked me what was the reason she was here at this house. I answered, “grandma, this is your house”. Three days ago she became upset that no one would take her to her other house and was sad. Of course we do not want to see her like this. We have tried saying to her that everything she needs is here at this house and there is nothing over in the other house. We even tried telling her that the lady who takes care of her during the day comes to this house and she would get lost if we sent her to the other house. Can anyone offer any suggestions on how to answer her?

Thank you,

Hello Gladys,
my name is Curt and I am having the exact same problem with my mom. Have you found a way to handle it?


Hi Curt and Gladys my mom becomes hell bent on leaving for her childhood home and if it’s bad enough I say ok but let’s have a coffee first or if that fails I take her in a car and drive a few miles and it resets her focus, this is called fantasy wandering and basically can include jobs they never had or other peculiar things they never were.

my mother in law just had hip replacement surgery eleven weeks ago .the gave her oxycontin for a pain killer my husband and i not very happy about it. but she is showing almost all of the symptoms of sundowners . she refers to a fourth woman and at night there is little man sitting in the corner sticking his tongue out. she decorated the house for christmas but dosen’t remember it.i’m not quite sure if it is the drugs or if it is something else. she also is up all night pacing she has mood changes she has a lot of the symptoms but is it the oxycontin or could it be dementia? i would appreciate some feed back.

My Mother had knee replacement surgery at 80, severe reaction to anesthesia , horrible halicinations, took 3 days to fully awake, looking back that’s when the night terrors started, it seems pain medication makes it worse even tylenol, beneydrol, it seems to accumulate and progressivly get worst, it’s been so hard, seems to have sundowners, but much better with no meds, not even aspirin. For 40 plus years her complaint, was leg pain,
I believe caused from blood pressure meds. We have slowly weaned her off of those,and leg pain,not as bad,Viscious circle BP meds caused leg pain,her pain caused BP to rise, pain meds caused delirium …..around we go…..

My Dad is 91 and is getting more and more confused. He is getting very rude and paranoid. He tells me that his dreams feel so real and he wakes up but is still in a dream state. His mood changes like the wind. One minute he seems fine and the next minute he is is filled with fear. He has plenty of money but constantly is in fear about his money. He looks at his watch every few minutes and as soon as he is somewhere he has anxiety about leaving. He is in a constant state of anxiety. I find it very difficult to be around him. I feel guilty for feeling this way but I know I have to take care of myself. My mother died four years ago and I have been the daughter to handle everything for him. He is still driving and I am very worried about this. There have been several incidents. I have tried to talk to his doctor about his nervous condition to see if there was a medication that would help but his doctor said my Dad is fine, the doctor will not listen. I noticed his condition seems worse later in the day. Morning time seems to be the best for him. He lives in independent living in a senior place. He refuses to cook for himself and complains about the food there. He eats lots of his meals out at restaurants. He found a lady where he lives that seems willing to cook and talk with him. He wants to be served. I am worried about his future with his nervousness getting worse. Does anyone here have any tips for me? I am his POA.

Hi Javabean,

When my dad (88) started having problems, he was examined and put on anti-depression meds with a sleeping aid for his sundown symptoms. I would check in your area for an Alzheimer’s group or the department of aging. They have resources and can lead you to doctors that can help with your dad.

Hi I think that my grandfather has sundown symptons. On dec 11 2011 he had no haertbeat and not breathing called the emts the brought him back to life and was in the icu and they did this thing where the cooled his body down slowly then warmed him up slowly. so once he started to wake up and get more active the night nurse said that he was be coming combative and was trying to get out of bed and they gave him hadol and didnt tell use so we had no idea what was going on with him he wont talk couldnt swallow anymore with out it going donw the wrong tube he would look at you but be looking right thru you!!! its was scary!!!!! so now he is at another hospital and no talking better and is getting to eat some ice chips but he is starting to act up at night he gets mad tried to pull his tubes out last night my dad stayed the night with him he said he was talking about the dog in the corner and just a bunch of other crazyy stuff ive tired to tell my grandma about sundowners. also he does not have alzheimers i just dont know what to do

my mother-in-law is 89 she will be 90 in August , she is in the nurseing home not because of this but simply because her daughter became bedfast and she could not take care of herself, and they have lived together all her life, daughter never married very big now over 500 lbs, to make a long story short a couple weeks ago my mother in law started at night said they were kids in her room she wouldnt stay in the bed and had fallen a couple weeks before and cracked her wrist so to be safe we had a bed alarm put on her, we are afraid if she falls again that she may break a hip as she has old aruther real bad, i had never heard of this until a cousin which is her neice & a nurse told me to look this up all the symptoms i have read is just what she is doing, she has a memeory that is better than mine and this is the first signs she has had , they have her on zyprexa an only for a couple days but it is taking a toil on me i have health problems and she is in another county 27mile away i feel bad because i cant go to see her & feel bad because she wont come home with me i have never delt with anything like this so i am really stressed. any suggestions you ca give would be appreciated Carolyn

My siblings and I are dealing with many of the symptoms I have been reading about here. My Mother is 82 and in early December we found that her forgetfulness was accelerating. She has had mild dementia for a few years. When my Dad was living he covered a lot for her, so we are still learning about a lot of this. She has had a couple of UTI’s which are devastating to her. The anxiety and dementia become paranoia and fear. She does not eat as she should and staying hydrated is pretty much impossible. She refuses to drink and eats a few bites of anything. She over indulges in M&M’s and other sweets, but still not enough to nourish her.
A couple of weeks ago she had to have surgery for a large abdominal hernia. The hour surgery became more than 3 hours under anesthesia and her personality has still not returned. Before the surgery we were taking turns staying with my mother in her home, but it was becoming increasingly exhausting and stressful for everyone to be in and out there. My sister would have moved in but could not bring her dogs with her to my mother’s community. No dogs allowed. I also have dogs and could not bring them with me. I live the farthest, about an hour away. I would leave on Thursday morning and not return home until Friday afternoon sometimes and be back and forth in between for doctor appointments etc. My aunts were on the “schedule” for care as well as caregivers in between.
After surgery she went to a well respected rehab but regretfully the care was poor. We took her home to my sister’s house where she still is, but the symptoms listed above seem to be happening every day.
Mom does okay through the day. She misses her house but sometimes seems to understand that she needs to be safe with my sister now. However, after supper, she begins to deteriorate. Trying to coax her to stay up longer has been unsuccessful. She insists on going to bed by around 9 each night. What follows is a nightmare for my sister who is the primary caregiver. Mom calls out, wails and cries, mumbles and talks for hours. She was given Oxycontin for pain after the surgery. We are hoping to wean her from this med as soon as possible to see if her symptoms improve. She uses melatonin, xanex, namenda and B12. We plan to up the B12 as that is safe to do. A sleep aid would help, but over the counter sleep aids basically have the active ingredient for benadryl in them and because Mom refuses to drink more and eat a little better, even if she sleeps, she wakes up shaking and anxious in the mornings. It is devastating to bear witness to the loss of quality of life in my mother. My mother was a strong woman. She raised us with stern, love and respect. I miss the woman she was and hope that I will carry and pass on the memories of her extraordinary life.

God bless each and everyone of you. May God be with you all and your loved ones. My great grandmother and I mean that literally! She passed april 18 th 2012. She passed at home on hospice. She had been home from a rehabilitation center for less then a month. She was there because she had broken her shin. At that time she had been staying at my mothers for almost a year! She before he moved in with my mom she was alone at her own home. Due to her having dementia, she easing the same and couldint do the same things as before. You guys I really Iam having a hard time. Sh has been a mother figure to me my whole life. I will be 27 years old. Before my great grandmother who has just had a birthday mar h 5 th, was 87 years old at the time of her passing. Before my granny went to the hospital for her leg. We knew she easing the due to dementia, but I believe when she was in the hospital for her leg she got so heavily sedated she easing eating.. or easing thinking to. I knew its apart of dementia buut it all happened so fast… I didn’t mention she had gain green on her left foot. Her toes except for two, and the top of her foot. I know god has full control over this happening. He really gave me peace during this strenuous time. I really could be taking this terribly. Wrong!!! I also know things. Oils have really been bad. That’s how I know god was and is this all the way because I was able to write her eulogy, dress and do her make up. The night she passed it was around 3:30/4pm. She was on hospice so she was at home. We wanted the family to / be able to spend those those last intimate moments with her. The funeral directors/ coroner came to take my granny @ 10pm. We I didn’t leave to 3am. You know a women had to come and prenounce my sweet great granny dead. It was a m moment in time that stood still!! For me. That same women gave us the opportunity to wash her a nice (wipe down). Motioned her down, comes an brushed her hair. I cut three lock from the middle of her hair. I gavetf one to two of my sisters, kept one for myself. Although it hurted me, she didont know what was going on! I believd had her spirit mind and body forever… there are alit if typos. Iam on a touch screen its antic up.. thank you guys I really needed to get that off me heart.

my dad was just 64 on thursday im worried sick abt this confusion it seems to be when he goes into hospital he gets this he has been going in and out for 4yr now,but everytime he goes in it gets worse,he was always a hard working man who enjoyed a drink after work,but in the last 4yr he hasnt worked had to take retirement due to his health,i go up every ngt to see him and he dosnt know where he is he tells me he been here and there all over working and been at pub etc,the other week he didnt even know me which was quiet hard but thats past for time being,hospital just mentioned this illness to me tngt its been realy intresting reading your stories i just hope my gets the help and diagnosis he needs…thank you for sharing your stories with me x

I’m the only caregiver to my mother, who has been living w/me and my husband, for a little over a year. She has all of a sudden started with what I thought was fake anxiety for attention. I have tried to get her help. It’s like hitting your head against a brick wall. I can’t get her to go to the dr to get some kind of help because she won’t go and I can’t get her admitted to the hospital to get a dx or treated. What has any one else done to get help for their loved one? We were given the name of a geriatric psychiatrist that may be able to help. How do I get her there?

It is very difficult as I know. You may have to make the doctor appointment and don’t tell her until a few days before. Then just remember you are now the parent and she is your child. The roles have changed, hard as it is to do. Just be firm, loving and reassuring to your mom. Help is on the way. Be brave and be positive. My prayers go with you.

Good Evening All My Mom Is82 To Be And She Got Terribly Ill With Pneumonia &It Was So Bad That This Sundowners Syndrome Isn’t My Mom she So Lost&She Says&Feels Shes Alone&Why This Happened To Her&Theres No Hope,Her Sickness Started Bladder Infection&When they Checked It Was So Bad,I believed It Affected Her Mind More So Shes Smart Woman&Caregiver Who Lost Her Husband On 4th Wed.Aniv. Passed April 3rd,2008&Then Lost Her Patient Then She Had Her Last Unemployment In Feb. y ????????Is Is there A Medicine That will Help&Is This Caused If A Person Even Had any Sign Of Small Tiny Stroke Or Was It From Pneumonia,Cause She Keeps Saying Shes going To Die,Or Is This Part Of The Diseased I Cry&I Know Not Good To But Its Hard Please Help me On Answers

The one thing that I would suggest to all of you is to have your loved one evaluated by a Geropsychiatric physician…This was the best thing we did for both our mothers and our health. He finely tuned her on Seroquel and Celexa and she is very content and easy to reason with. Prior to the medications she was hallucinating, paranoid and became very difficult to care for. Now we are dealing with my 96 year old father developing dementia. We may soon need to get him evaluated because the evenings are bringing out a side of him that we have never seen before…Take time for your self and accept any offers of help that are offered …. eventually things even out and life will get back to normal.

I have been reading all the posts. My Mom has severe senile dementia. She also gets confused and talks to herself at times. Lately she talks about her mother and father which both are dead. She has been having pain at first it was in her front lower left side we went to ER and they found nothing sent us home with loratab. She got up an fell in the hall flat her back the next weekend another ER visit they found nothing again and was sent home with pain meds. Three days later I couldnt get her out of bed for her yelling she was hurting in her back another ambulance ride to the ER still found nothing pain meds and sent home. They did mention it could be her dementia. Has anyone had this problem she still yells at times and I mean yells in pain. We had taken her off the meds as they make her lifeless and have to keep her in the bed she really gets out of her head. Now I am giving her one at bedtime hoping it will help her sleep and not yell at night. I have had three nights now hardly no sleep. With or without meds she yells in pain its not all the time. She can go a few days and here we go again with the yelling… She says I jst dont know the pain she is in. I jst dont know what to do we have a doctor appt. Any suggestions this is sooo new to me…

My mother is 99 years old. She has a clear mind and does well for her age. The past few months she has started accusing her neighors of getting a key to her house and coming in when she is gone and hiding gardening tools in a box in a closet where she kept some of her gardening tools.She said there are a lot more tools in that box now and most of them aren’t her tools. She even told him she knew he stole the tools and was hiding them in her house so he wouldn’t get caught with them. He didn’t know what she was talking about and this naturally upset him.What she is accusing them of is not rational and makes no sense. She also can’t hear and when her Dr. called to tell her that her urine test came back okay, she decided the Dr. was mad at her because she accidentally may have said to the Dr. that the speciman was taken to his office at 5pm (After he closed) She heard the Dr. say her test was clean and clear and okay…but she insisted that the Dr. was mad at her even though what she was saying made no sense. Her doctor is a kind, gentle, soft spoken person and would never, nor has ever, gotten mad at her about anything. She will not listen to reason once she gets things like this into her head. There is no way to get her to let it go and she certainly would never admit that what she thinks could ever be wrong. What is causing her to be like this so all of a sudden.

Even though my mom is 89 she is very sharp and other than some forgetfulness and minor memory issues, has been fine mentally up until about 3 weeks ago. My dad died Sept. 30 last year after suffering from PSP and had become total nursing home care. My mom had been very impatient with him and before he went into the nursing home, would constantly scold him when he would fall and such as if he were doing this to just aggravate her. She has done well since his death and lives alone next door to me and other than spinal stenosis and a lot of back pain, does very well. Now out of the blue about 3 weeks ago she tells me that Daddy is coming back at night and she hears a car outside that must bring him and pick him up. She is adamant it is him although she says he won’t speak and she doesn’t get a good look at his face. This has happened almost every night except for maybe 2 or 3 out of 3 weeks. She has been worried about where he is staying and leaves his clothes out if he needs them and has begun putting a blanket on his bed (they slept in separate rooms). She swears one night she got up and found him in his bed with the blanket covering him as she said it was kinda cool in the house but he got up and left she guessed and folded the blanket back up. I thought at first I had her realizing that this was a recurring dream and yes, maybe Daddy’s spirit could come back and assure her he was ok but it was not physically him. Well now she gets rather angry when I suggest he is not coming back and even though I try to reason with her and all of what she has always believed as a Christian, it doesn’t matter. She is so lucid about everything else but this is really getting worse. I have an appointment with her Dr. Monday to check if any of her meds could have caused this although she is not on anything new or maybe has some kind of occult infection such as UTI that is asymptomatic. When my husband & I left her house this evening she told him to get in the golf cart around 11:00 tonite and ride in her driveway and he would see the car that she thinks must bring him. I asked her tonite why if he was coming and waking her up why she didn’t go in his room and demand to know why he was doing this. She said she didn’t want to bother him because he didn’t want to talk. I reminded her that his feelings were never an issue before he died, she would tell him what she thought regardless of what his wishes may be. I’m wondering if maybe she has some deep seated unresolved guilt issues that she would never in a million years exhibit about things she said during his progressive debilitation or what. She has never been a nurturer or one that felt anything other than she was always in the right and justified in her behavior. This has just really confused me as I would expect her to be mentally foggy during the day. The only thing is that when this first started she would get confused asking me about different places Daddy might have been and when he was there such as a hospital and her reasoning on this line of questioning was her trying to figure out where he was staying. This all doesn’t really sound like Sundowner’s but whatever it is, it pretty much follows a routine most every night and is something that she is beginning to feel is predictable every night. I’m guessing I will soon have to start spending the night over there but as independent as she is otherwise, I hate to start this. She has always been the personality type to never need reassurances from anyone as she never gave them but she did make the statement tonite that maybe I should stay over there but not in the way of she would like for me to but to prove to me that he is back. I know it sounds selfish to not want to start staying overnight but she is so demanding and can be hard to deal with even before this started. I guess I’ll just have to see what the MD says although we live in a very small community and I don’t have alot of confidence that this is going to give me any answers unless some testing shows something obvious. Interestingly enough, she doesn’t want to tell anybody about this even though she has always been one to tell everything she knew to anyone so to me that would seem to indicate that it is not reasonable. Don’t know, anyone got a clue??

Get rid of all the meds and try 3 meletonin from the health food shop everynite 1/2 hour before bed. It was the only thing that makes my mother 90 with severe Dementia sleep, replace the blockers, thinners, statins, pain killers and Athritis medication with turmeric, Krill oil, cod liver oil, vitamin B spray, Alpha limphatic Acid, COQ10, honey, apple cider vinager, cloudy apple juice, prune juice and beetroot juice. Research all the meds side effects anyway, improve balance, mobility, constipation, Athritis, eye site, tinnivitus. Feel 40 years younger, cure the blocked sinuses with cyclamen flower. Unfortunately the damage done by over prescription of medications has caused the permanent brain damage which I can’t fix. I only kept a baby Asprin and betamin on her med list. Two years later guess what she didn’t die without the oh so necessary drugs. It was a slow process of reduction of meds ( drug addiction things like things biting her etc) and research but please don’t stop your warfarin then blame me if you die. However question your health professionals and research my suggested health shop alternatives.

My mother is 93 and I am doing what I can. She is getting paranoid and thinks im trying to put her in a home or wherever. My mother wants me in the evening to spend time with her I tell her come into my room “its large” I have a sofa and a tv one one side ..told her sit watch even if I am reading she can feel connected. I’l be working outside of the house soon and I have a great aide that is helping me. My mother is detiorating with mini episodes (mini strokes) happening but she comes out of them. One day she may not and if that happens I pray God takes her. If it gets to the point she needs care around the clock my sister will take her. I have been without help for 4 years. I’m exhausted and I definitely need time off and I am working on that now.
God Bless to all ..who care for their parent(s).

My mother in law has been diagnosed with Dementia and her mental capacity went down hill rather quickly. She was living with us up until August but her night time wandering got to be too much and she is in a nursing home now. She has a cellphone and calls me or my husband on average 25 times a day sometimes starting at 4 in the morning. Her chief complaint is that she is constipated and she needs help and can I bring her a suppository, the nursing home does not like to use them and she says milk of magnesia makes her constipation worse. I am having trouble deciding if the constipation is real or imagined. As long as I have known her she has used glycerin suppositories but the nursing home staff says she goes regularly even though the messages that she leaves me say she hasn’t been for several days. In all I have read, constipation is a common ailment in people with dementia so I am concerned now that maybe she is telling the truth and the nursing home staff is not paying close enough attention. Has anyone else had this problem? Any suggestions? We are meeting with the nursing home soon to update her care plan, but I want to go prepared. Any help would be appreciated

I hope I’m in the correct forum to seek advice. My Father is in a wonderful nursing home for the past 2 years(advance alzheimer’s, blind and parkinson’s, lost his ability to walk. My mother took care of him at home for years until she was unable to. Both of my parents have had major health problems for many years and I have been the one to always care for them, numerous hospital visits, stopping by their home weekly to check on them. I married young (22) and left my parents home. I have to adult children, 20 and 22. My mother in my opinion has always had an an anxiety problem and I have begged her to seek help for about 15 years. She refuses. I have explained to her that it is not good for her health, blood pressure, heart. My childhood was good but my mother is a yeller, slams doors and has never displayed cooping skills. I have a older brother that had a very bad drug problems and has taking advantage of both my parents his entire life and is no longer in the picture and was never there to help me with both of my parents. I was a good daughter, always did as I was asked growing up. As a result of my divorce, loosing my job, my home I recently had no other choice but to move back into my mothers home with my boys. The home is big enough so this did not cause a problem for privacy for all of us. For 20 years I have never asked for any help from my parents before this. I decided to go back to school to advance my career and have been looking for employment every day. I explained to my mother that i would pay for all the food my boys and I need, I pay the cable bill each month and as soon as I’m back to work will pay rent to stay here until I can move out again. I clean up the house daily, offer to cook her dinner, do her yard work and the boys and I stay out of her way to keep her routine so she feels comfortable We stay out of her way, we are quiet. My only request that i asked her when i moved in was please do not yell and scream at me. I do not raise my voice at her. We are both adults, other then that one request we do things on her terms and i am fine with that.She still feels that i am taking over home. I stay in my room and study and am quiet. Once in a while my boys will have a friend over and are very respectful when they do and she gets anger. she yells at me about it, not her grandsons and then forgets yelling at me. Over the last few months of living back home, i have noticed that she is very forgetful, not paying bills on time, looses her belongings and has become nasty and yells and screams at me, erratic mood swings. She talks to herself a lot, when i ask her if she is ok, she snaps at me and tells me shes fine.She feels that her neighbors are out to get her at times, they are not as far as I can see, I have offered to help but she thinks i’m trying to control her. I have asked her if she wants to see a doctor and she refuses. My oldest son has even sat down and very nicely suggested that it may be good to seek medical advice cause he has noticed a change as well. She will not allow me to ask any family members or our priest for advice. I know that soon enough she is going to need my help even more but she is wearing me down. I try to have calm conversations with her, she just storms off, saying that she is just a stupid old lady and is crazy. She said that i cant wait for her to get out of her home, she told me to go to hell. None of this is true on our end. I have told her that we are grateful that she took us in. We have never treated her that way and never tell her she is stupid or crazy. She asks me when do i plan on moving out, i have no where to go. My boys father have walked out of their lives so he is not an option for them. I am struggling in school because of all the stress at home and am thinking about dropping out because I cant concentrate on my studies. I understand that my mother must be scared seeing my father with alzheimer’s and may be in denial. I feel so bad that I had to come back and live with her. I thought i would be able to help her and she help me when times got hard for both of us. That’s what families do. When i asked my mother to make a list of rules in her home for me and the boys to make things better she asked me if i planned on taking her to court…I was so upset by this statement and simple told her that I was just trying to make things better for everybody, mostly her. I’m not sure if she is exhibiting early sings of dementia. I would never put her in a nursing home and told her that i would take care of her. any advice would be helpful.

Hi Mary,
You really need to find a way to get her in to see a doctor and be evaluated for dementia/alzheimer’s. She’s exhibiting many of the signs/symptoms and may become a threat to herself or others at some point. Her paranoia is a classic sign, as are the mood swings. If she does have alzheimer’s, you won’t be able to reason with her in a conversation. The brain becomes incapable of reason, unable to do simple math such as balancing a check book, and progressively forgetful. Good judgement will decline in areas of finance. In her more lucid moments, she’s probably all too aware that something is wrong and realizes that she’s forgetting things and misplacing things which will bring about fear, frustration, anger, and a feeling that she’s losing control of everything. Unfortunately, this may also make her much more resistant to seeking medical help. Depending on her stage of dementia, there are medications that may help to slow the progress of this disease. There are also medications that may level her mood swings out. Many times small doses of anti psychotic medications are used to help alleviate the symptoms of anger, depression, and sadness and to help with insomnia. I hope something here is useful for you. Best wishes.

I wouldn’t make that promise, you don’t know how bad things can be and a nursing home is professional and can care for people around the clock. The wandering at night or physical situations that can happen are all part of this it isn’t easy. Just take one day at a time a nursing home is not a failure as her daughter. I am sure if it was you, you wouldn’t want your boys taxed with this it is valiant and I am in the midst of caring for my 89 year old mom. The complete personality change is dramatic, traumatic and heart wrenching and I wish you all well.

I am in USA and working in a medical field. I grew up in India and we don’t much have this. Mian reason because we in Indian culture join family system and parents live with mainly with son and his family . since it’s join family system and due to grand kids and all relatives visit all the time it is very live.I been here from past 25 year and now we will be leaving USA due to all this problem. me and my husband both are in 50’s and don’t want to die in nursing home.
If you start join family system it is best for grand kids because they learn how to take care of elderly. my MIL is 90 and very happy and we all have family dinner together. she always lived with us.

Thank you!

If people the sick parent can stay within the family it is the best for the aging person.
For me I am alone with a 93 yr old mother. I work have an aide if things get to the point I cannot then my sister will take her.

My 88 year old father has been doing some strange things lately, as in using household items such as the tv remote to try to change the wall clock time or to turn up his hearing aid volume. He has also began to show an inability to balance his check book and pay bills on time. Should we be concerned that this could be sun-downers? we are trying to convince him to see the family doctor.

J Hamp-get him to a doctor as soon as possible. Even if you have to lie to him, or force him to go. If my brothers and I had not just talked about getting our Mother in for full check up, we may have prevented a major stroke that has left her with no memory that last longer then 5 minutes, depression, and sever agitation. Physically she does well, even remembers to wash her hands after going to the bathroom, but had to be told to pull her slacks up first. Mini-strokes can cause a lot of changes and the only way to know is to have test run when normal for them goes astray. Had we forced Mother to go to be tested a year ago, we would have know she had already had a stroke, and probably several mini strokes. Your comment about him balancing his checkbook really hit me. Had I been paying more attention I would have realized my Mother’s handwritting had changed, she spent hours trying to balance her check book, and she was very happy, very depressed, or angry at everything. This may not be the format for this but check the mail you father is getting. In one week Mother received over 140 pieces of mail-6 were bank statements and utility bills. The rest were for products that she never took, wouldn’t wear, would never use, charities and government agendas asking for donations (way too many she sent money too) –to the tune of over $3,000 in two years–money she needs now for her care. God bless your Dad and you.

My ex and I live together (married 21 yrs. divorced for 22). He is 79 and has Alzheimer’s. I have told him to talk to me in the morning, when he is more rational. Around 2 or 3 P. M., and the rest of the evening, if I try to discuss something important during this time, he seems distant and it’s almost like I speak a foreign language and he doesn’t understand me. .We have one car and I told him I would need it at 3 P. M. tomorrow to attend our grandson’s family counseling session. It’s every Friday at 4 P.M. He got angry and said , “you’re throwing me under the bus, for Dane.” He is very controlling, or tries to be. He over-dramatizes the least intrusion into his daily routine. He is extremely jealous, even of the time I spend with all 3 of our grandchildren, and I don’t see them very often. One of the main reasons I agreed to live together, strictly platonic, was to be better off, financially, to help the grandkids and to help him. He only has one brother, but they aren’t close. I will tough it out, with God’s help, to the bitter end. I was an R. N. and will do all I can to keep him at home! I sure would like it if he were more mellow.

My mother is 95. She had to move out of her home because of Hurricane Sandy and has been living with me. I noticed her fear of being left alone in my home although she was capable of taking care of herself. It was tough because mom didn’t want to go with me if I went out but she also did not want to stay home alone. She has recently been in the hospital for 12 days and has not been in rehabilitation for 10 days. During the hospitalization she became fearful of being alone and of the dark. One of the nurses mentioned Sundowners Syndrome and it immediately clicked she is now a classic example. I went to the hospital and now go to the rehab facility every evening from about 6:00 to 8:30 when she is in bed and has been given a sedative. I am beginning to wonder if I am doing the right thing by making her rely on me being in the room.

My grandma is 81 yrs. old and is the baby of her 8 siblings and also the last one, After loosing her 84 yr. old sister in Jan. 18 2011, and 83 yr. old in April 7, 2012. I started to noticed some changes like she was talking more about her last sister cause she would talk to her on the phone everyday and said she would catch her self dialing her number a couple of times, and tell me little story’s. I didn’t think any thing of it except that maybe that’s her way of couping with it, mind you, my grandma raised from age 12-19, so we are very close to where we always speak on the phone and I try to see her twice a week when possible and she just lives on the other side of town.. I want to say about 3 weeks ago I had just got off work like around 11:30 pm. went home and no later than a few mins. got a phone call from my grandma saying to go pick her, I asked what was wrong she said that she had fell asleep at 10:00 and had turned her body to the other side and had opened her eyes and saw an ugly big head right be side her looking right at her and she had yelled and got out of the room calling out for her mom, then calling my phone. I then drove there and she wanted to leave but we stood there and talked about it, I went in her room and she showed me where she seen it I walked over there and didn’t see anything but for some strange reason I got chills, and all the hairs on my face, arm, were at attention never had that before and told her, she seen all my up, went to the livingroom and talked somemore and read her the bible and praying with her, then telling her it was the devil trying to scare her, she agreed after an hour trying to get her to go to sleep she staid up the whole night and fell asleep at 7:30 am. To make a long story short ever since then I’ve been going to pick her up to sleep at my home and taking her back to hers in the morning. took her to her doct. and was percribed meds. to help her sleep…..

I just took my 84 year old dad to the doctor yesterday because he is dropping things suddenly and has been seeing ‘demoms’ as soon as he wakes up. The doctor sent him to the hospital for observation and my sis in law said that a doctor came in right after I left and said

oops, sorry…said he has early dementia and cant drive or live alone any more..I feel like Ive been hit by a truck. I know the visions scare him but I didnt expect this- he gets along fine.

I think that my Mother-in-law is starting with sundowners. All of your suggestions and comments have been very helpful but I am still having trouble dealing with this…..she is so alert in the morning! I love this woman so much and this is breaking my heart!!!

It is heartbreaking, you lose the intimacy of meaningful conversations and it’s like watching the person they were die and you are left with the rest. This is a tragic health situation I pray for you.

I live with my parents and my father is 75 he is the youngest of 4 and his last siblings funeral was last night. He was not close to his family as he got older.. My father is a strong(tough) funny man but never to social. Never mean to me or my siblings or my mother. But he is old fashion somewhat. Well at 6am today i went upstairs and heard yelling my dad was yelling at my mom to get him paper, my mom said here and i guess handed to him (they were in their bedroom door shut light on). I stood there as he was cursing at her about giving him paper, and then she was saying just lay down and he would yell i dont wanna f’n lay down, why dont you listen and just give me the paper, so she got up got another piece n handed to him and he was like what do i want this for, and she said I dont know and he said wtf is wrong with you why wont you give me the paper, and she said what paper what do you want it for and he started swearing at her again about oh f your paper I’ll stick it up your A**.. ok sounds horrible, but that is not my father.. My parents argued may be 2 times in my entire life. and it was never yelling just silence. This morning he sounded drunk, BUT DEFINITELY was not.. My mother has always done for him and good to him, it went both ways, they played the husband and wife part perfect. He eventually came out the room I hid lol.. And then my mom got him in the bed but he was still agitated, but quieter. and then fell asleep I guess. I am so scared. if anyone can help.

This poor father of yours has had a stroke which causes cell death in the brain leading to vascular dementia and a complete personality change. I am experiencing this disease with mom and first diagnosed at Christmas after living fine and she sounded drunk one day and it passed I thought it was due to meds but now I see it just spiraled downhill after that episode that was a stroke.

hello friends i am a 32 years old female having sunset related fear and depression problem from my childhood from where i recall ,i am not heaving any other major health problem and living a normal active life -please guide if you have any thought information for this problem

My 76 year old,husband has been diagnosed with sundowners dementia .he is mostly ok during the day vut wonders all nite.gets I to trouble pulling things apart like bedding closets,drawers and a few other weird things .then doesn’t remember .im afraid he might hurt himself or,turn stove on or some other dangerous thing. He is presently in the hospital and they observing himand see if they ca get the bottom of,it’s and mayve find something to make him sleep Thur the nite. Did I do,the right thing by bringing him the hospital .they think he mists crisis stage and should be in a long term care facility whar advice could you give me.

Over the last year we noticed subtle changes in my mom she lives with us. It started with leaving the water running. She seemed to be more confused in the morning and then she would be ok. A year ago she stopped driving and volunteering. She has refused to go to a doctor. She was still able to do lite cooking and went to the restroom on her own. I would help her in and out of the tub for her baths.
In the last 2 weeks however she has gotten considerably worse and I am now looking for a doctor in our town. She has had to start warring adult diapers, It is a battle to get her to eat, She is easily distracted and finds it difficult to put sentences together. And this morning she told me she could not remember my name but knew I was her daughter. This is devastating to me it breaks my heart to see her like this.

Any advise would be greatly appreciated. What to expect from a doctor? She has always told me that she does not want to be put in a home for the elderly. She was a nurse for 45 years and she saw all the good the bad and the ugly in those places. I however know I am not a caregiver and as she worsens I am not sure what I can do. I love her dearly she is 80 and I had so hoped that she would live out her years healthy and happy. She has only Medicare and no insurance I don’t even know if they would cover home care. Currently my husband is unemployed and is home during the day and I come home for lunch everyday. But once he goes back to work we are going to need outside help.

my 87 year old mom lives with me and has dementia, and parkinsons so she can’t walk alone without falling. She sleeps most of day and keeps me up all night, sundowning, hallucinating, having anxiety attacks, etc. When i fall asleep she gets up and falls. i have cameras, bed alarms, she is on seraquil, mellatonin etc. during day she is extremely manipulative, needy, demanding, etc. she is driving me crazy, making me resent her, and basically i have no life, and my marriage is suffering, as is my ability to be a good mother. i don’t know what to do. she is already on hospice, sitters 3 days/week, thats all i can afford. she acts up mostly with me, so the sitters get her good behavior. i am going nuts and don’t know what to do. i have no siblings, no help.

Listen, may God bless you all and the parent you are trying to take care of. My grandmother is 102 and she is the same. She also only has 2 volumes 39 and 130. The family wanted me to watch her so they could run their own lives and most of then live in the area my mom comes twice a a year and when she does I just stay in my room and her my mom get yelled at. and when she leaves, my grandmother would go back doing the work she did all her adult life and I had learned that I dare not try to help unless asked. ell now everything is upside down About 8 months ago she got two sores on her left leg, one from scratching and the other from a fall. Now she has to walk with a walker and sleep in a chair in the tv room because her leg hurts worse when she lies in bed.Now, she wants me to help and is grateful. The reason I agreed to come here is that she was the person the most my corner while growing up. I love helping her but I feel so bad because she was so independent and now she is in a walker. So now I do the laundry, cook,clean . I go to college and now I come home right after class. I move the kitchen chairs at night so she has a wide path We watch wheel of fortune every night and play cards on Monday evening Sh is almost completely deaf so she will watch visual shows with me such as Cops, The Amazing Race and Antique Road Show. I love taking care of her and probably will until she dies or is put in a nursing home though anyone thinking of that has to go through me for that. I paray in The Name of Jesus that I will be up to the job and that the Lord will bless her and all of you and your relitives, Amen

Hi , I don’t know if anyone else has this problem with the medication ZYPREXA. I have bipolar depression. Whenever I have taken this medication zyprexa, I frequently had the symptoms of confusion and paranoia and sometimes delusional thinking as well as hallucinations just around sundown. It is a very scary feeling and happened almost every evening when I was on zyprexa. This medication would knock me out like no sleeping pill could ever and made me feel like i weighed 10x my own weight. I am 33 years old. Currently I am only on Abilify and I am so thankful I don’t have the sundowner’s symptoms anymore after discontinuing the drug zyprexa.

My grandmother who I live with is 93 years old had a happy , cheerful live the she started going blind first in one eye then both in her earlier 80’s , then we discover she had Alzheimer’s ,dementia, and now sundown it’s hard because we don’t know what to do when she start hallucinating. But we’re carrying on.

My Mom 76 has a major bleed in her left front side of the brain. and then month later she has another one on the same side..just a little behind the first spot. They didn’t need to do surgery on the second one, but we almost lost her twice. She walks, talks and moves just fine. but her memory and Mom aren’t the same. She is having Sundowners symptoms she had them every night in the hospital. She has been home now for about 2 months and they are starting up again. Is it normal for them to come and go? You can see the fear in eyes when she tells she about them…I tell her just a sundowner and not to worry and try to remember that when you have one.. I don’t know else to say. She said, I think I’m going crazy:( Can anyone give any suggestions?
Thanks and my thoughts go out all of you as we go through this with our parents. It’s so hard and so sad!

My mom has been calling my brother and myself at odd hours! 2:30 3:00 5:00 in the morning talking nonsense and we didnt know where this came from! Asking when im coming up from the parking lot to see her in her apartment! She told my brother yesterday morning that me and my girlfriend were in the hallway laughing at her mocking her making fun of her then running away when she opened the door!But nobody is there when she opens the door! The girlfriend shes talking about and myself broke up 3 years ago! We went to visit her once and she all of a sudden brings her up! Mind you she lives 4 hours away from me! My brother and myself are going to get in touch with her doctor and tell her whats going on before we go visit her this weekend! Its scaring the shit out of us! Her mental state is fine when we talk to her during the day so shes not like this all the time and it only started about a week ago! Its like a light switch turning on and off!

need help!, My name is Carolyn, my 73 yr.,old husband,had 4-heart BY-PASS, 2 1/2 yrs.
a go,We were told he had Sundowners,he get’s worse daily!,very,sweet,handsome,Christ
ian man.He sold his CO.,retired,after by-past,sundowners!,he can drive but,2 fast,if i don’t cross him,so sweet,when mad VERY BAD MOUTH!,he takes important things and
hides them,only from me.(drivers lic.,med.,card,bank card,pass port,ect.)clean house,ME,
ES.he said,he want’s2 ,hurt me,I do get burises in bed,he never knows he does this?also
said he has no sex drive,he had penial implant,worked twice,20 yr’s,ago,now he takes
care of himself. says he does not! i sleep 2-3 hr’s,chronic,burning pain in my face,32 yr’s
was told no stress,rest,ect. Dr’s. don’t know why.i work in the house, so tired! we do
not get along ,unless i keep quite. he want’s me 2 sit down,watch,tv.,i would like 2 leave.
so,much more!! WHAT 2 DO?? THANK YOU, ( my 95 yr., MOM,is in home 4 AZL.).

My mom who is an elderly person suffers from a certain infection and has had them in the past, but the most recent one put her in the hospital because she became disoriented and delusional and this had never happened before. Although she was forgetting little things, it has become increasingly worst. I have been advised that because of the infection, her memory will come and go. She has been in the hospital for a few days and supposedly she has Sundowners. As I am reading about this, I am a little confused because prior to her getting the infection, she was mentally stable. I am hoping that this is temporary setback and she will get back to being herself, she lives at home at home with us and I want some of the normality to return. I am counting on the hospital staff who have been extraordinarily exceptional in the manner in which they are treating her. The hope is that things can get back as best as they were before she was admitted. Hang in there everyone because things will not improve with age, they get worst. Patience is a virtue and if they took care of us since birth up to the time we could fend for ourselves, then now it’s our turn to take care of them. Keep in mind that as your parents get older, they become like children and we need to take care of them as they did with us. Do not ignore or stop taking care of them because they are special and I in particular want my mom to last for as long as the Lord wants her around, he decides when they leave this world. My motto is ‘hope for the best, but always be prepared for the worst.’
It’s all part of the aging process and as we their siblings get older, we will see more if this and more.

Hello Everyone,
My name is, Jasmine. I am seventeen years old and live at home with my 40 year old mother. I was reading all the symptoms to sundowner syndrome and I really think my mom has it. She scares me.. I’ve noticed it’s not every night though but every month for about a week or less she’s a totally different person. She sleepwalks, wanders around, stand in one place with her knees bent and her eyes are closed and she will just stand there and rock back and forth. Every time I try and confront her and ask what she is doing she comes up with the same excuse saying she’s “stretching out her legs.” It’s been really getting to me emotionally. I worry about her that she’s going to fall or get hurt somehow which she has gotten hurt from falling in the past. I really do not know what to do because I don’t know who to call. She’s very, very stubborn and gets defensive when I tell her that she is not okay. I tell her to go to the hospital but she refuses. Please, I need advice and help on what to do for my mom. She literally has all the symptoms of this illness. I’m scared for her. Thank you in advance! -Jasmine Romero

What has happened with your mom?
Are you ok?
What have the doctor said?
Does your mom have a doctor?

Try to be as nice and caring as possible but also start to become the parent. Not in a bossy way but in a comforting way

I’ve been taking care of my 93 yr old grandpa. He has dementia. Been here since Nov. I told parents I would stay to Dec but with all of the violence as he raised his fists and says he will knock me out or he gets angry at me and says can you fricking leave. I want u to leave. I have to hide a lot in my room. I did not know I was going to live like this. I’m here 24-7 and I know my dad does not want his dad in a nursing home. I get to stay out 24 hours twice a month. I’m going crazy myself. Its too much for me to handle. I have my parents to middle of July. I said I’m sorry but I am not trained for this. Some nights I don’t get much sleep. The other day he slept most of it away. Slept for like three days. Then he got up like nothing was wrong. But today he was talking about things that made no sence. Like he had to go see his mom. Shes been dead for over thirty years. He was pacing a round telling me he was ready and hope the Lord took him tonight. He asked me who I was a few times. Does anyone know how much longer her may love? He’s getting worse. More confused. And first sleepy for days now he can’t sleep.

I’m seeking help for my 68 year old mother. She consistently makes up things in her head. She lives in a building where she has her own apartment, and can take care of herself, but she’s always telling me that the people in this building are out to get her. For the past year or more she was convinced she was married to the regional manager of her apartment building who almost never visits the facility. The corporate office called me last year to advise me of their concern when she was sending multiple emails to who she thought was him, but it was his secretary about how much she loved him , and plans of their wedding. She is increasingly paranoid about people in her building coming in and stealing her poetry, and selling it for money. She says she can hear full conversations of people when they are in the hallway, lobby, or even around the corner in the office , and all of those conversations indicate that they are trying to deceive her, or harm her in some way. She speaks of them planning to rape her, or do something bad to her. I get at least 20 text messages from her on a daily basis, sometimes more. I haven’t approached her for about year about my concern. The last time I did she removed me from her emergency contact list at her apartment complex so that they were not aloud to contact me regarding anything. My mother has always shown signs of some sort of mental disease since she grew up in a very rough environment, and has gone through two emotional breakdowns in her younger adult years. I don’t really know what to do. Talking to her about it has not seemed to work. She pushes me away, and pushes me to the point where I have no patience, and I try not to let it get to that point because after that we don’t speak for a while. We have a very tense relationship because of her decisions when I was a child to move away, and let my father and his wife raise us, but I’m all she has, and I love her dearly so i’ll never leave her side. This has made it more difficult to grow closer to her, and to care for her.

My 84 year old mom started having hallucinations, lashing out, etc…anyway..she was put into a geriatic physc unit for about 2 weeks to be evaluated…the doctor there put mom on Risperdal..and she is back to being my again…but nobody has ever explained to me as to why she is so cold all the time…I have figured it out now thanx to reading the different posts on here…Mom lost a leg years ago to diabetes..and is confined to a wheel of course..she don’t move much…I keep her bundled up so i don’t burn up…I get over heated as fast as she gets cold…but if your parent starts having hallucinations, to their doctor…mom is doing great since she has been on the risperdal…

My father is 82 and pretty much wheel chair bound. He has been accusing my mother of seeing other men. This does not go away once it starts, life becomes miserable for my mother and my father. He told me he is done. The last time this happened we put him on anti depressant medicine and it helped for a while. But he decided there was nothing wrong and the medicine made him feel funny so he quit taking it so now these accusations are back. We have decided to meet with my mother and see what she wants to do and support her as much as possible. Any suggestions?

Hi. I’m a caregiver for my 40 year old husband suffering with familial dementia. I’m so overwhelmed! So many well meaning people want to compare their experiences of their elderly grandparents or parents to what all I’m experiencing with my husband. I’m here to say some things are the same or similar but there are many things he’s going through that can’t even compare. He has progressed rapidly the past couple years. I can’t even keep up. The info on Sundowners is helpful, yet he’s still unique. For the last week or so, almost like clockwork, around 430 to 6 in the morning, he has been extremely irritable mostly with me. Telling me he could care less about anything I think, feel, or am saying. Within a couple hours after, like the episode never occurred. It is tearing me down emotionally! His neurologist has him on Neudexta twice a day. But lately it’s not been near as effective. I will be speaking with her next time he has an appointment about this matter, but frankly she is most of the time at a loss herself as to what might help as hereditary familial young onset dementia is rare. Is there possibly anyone else on here dealing with anything remotely similar that might have any advice or suggestions? I feel so inadequate and at a loss! And I would really like to be able to find some info on what stage exactly my husband might be currently in and what I could realistically expect considering his age, symptoms, and rapid progression; as to how much longer I might reasonably have with him. Thanks for any and all info!

What do do? My mom has had severe, horrific, vulgar, etc hallucinations for over 8 years now. They are 24/7–she seldom sleeps, doesn’t; eat right and yet she has her memory and she presents herself clear to doctors. She even drives. She calls constantly cursing, screaming–hitting the walls with a stick as she fights off the hallucinations. She and I need help. How long will this last?

Caregiving for family is the most overlooked under appreciated job on earth. It is a 24/7 job leaving no time for your own life and without a day off or time to yourself except when they are sleeping which gives you even less sleep. It’s very hard and I’ve been taking care if my Disabled husband my 93 year old Aunt and my 90 year old Parents for 3 years now and I’m overwhelmed overworked and abused by my mother mentally, verbally and emotionally. She is the only one that dont have Dementia either just a angry miserable negative mean woman anymore. My Aunt has had Alzheimer’s now for about 6 years. Some days she is perfectly normal but others not so at all. She sleeps a lot and dreams out loud and they are usually more like nightmares. She screams and talks constantly. She dreams a lot of men out to kill her probably due to the war and soldiers all around she is from Normandy. What’s bad is she thinks her dreams are real and bring them into her awake life. Trying to convince her everything is okay and that she is safe and it was just a bad dream is sometimes almost impossible. Two nights ago she woke up thinking people were here stealing the furniture and were going to kill us. Took forever to calm her down from that. She can tell me hour long stories from 50 years ago but cant remember what I just told her 2 seconds ago. It’s a horrible disease. My stepdad had Dementia real bad. Couldnt carry on any kind of conversation. He hallucinates all the time. He sees animals in the house all the time. He thinks our back patio is the driveway and sees people driving up all the time and always says he wants to go home and convinced hes being held hostage here. Thinks theres fish in our swimming pool and that theres always a lady and her baby in his bed and the list goes on. I have to make some of it comical or I’d be out of my mind. I had to put locks on doors and our gate so he couldnt wander off after once at around 1:30 am he got up wearing his diaper and a tshirt and went out the front door and down the street and walked into a house just like ours and freaked the woman there and called the police. What a mess that was. Couldnt let that happen again. My mother couldnt deal with his Dementia and treated him as though he was faking his behavior and treated him so terribly. It was a horror movie. In January he started falling a lot and never had the problem at all before. Didnt even walk with a walker. We took him to the emergency room after his last fall as he complained for the first time ever he was in pain. It was very hard on me physically getting him off the floor when he fell. I’m not as strong as I use to be now that I’m older. Had to have the fire dept come help me once I felt bad. Anyway the ER doctor said he may only have 5 months left to live and set up hospice for us since it was so hard for me since he was falling when trying to get out of bed at night. I couldnt worry about him laying on the floor all night or even having ti help him up hes a big man. Hospice was the best thing that ever happened to me. They are always there when you need them even at 3 am. Wow! They brought him a bed he couldnt easily crawl out of with rails all the way down. They helped me change him teaching me how while patient is lying down. Not easy specially when they are fighting you. Anyway he started not wanting to eat and just sleep 3 days later he passed away in the night. I found him and refused to accept he was gone before waking my mom and telling her. After he was not in the house anymore my mother became more mean and abusive when I even did more of everything for her that she would allow me to even do. She made me very depressed and sad where my brother told her after he could stand her always saying shes leaving and said she had to go. Told her she needs to be alone since she dont know how to treat people but most of all me. He helped her get into a assisted living facility like she wanted and says how happy she is but that’s becoming a lie. She complains about everything and I still have to do things for her since shes in lockdown due to coronavirus. I drive there every other day to bring her or go buy her what she wants. Shes starting to regret leaving but refuses to say shes sorry for her treatment towards me instead makes me feel guilty. I wont put up with her mental abuse anymore. Back to my Aunt, she gets up also in the middle of the night and says what no dinner? Or gets herself dressed and wheels herself into my room and wakes me up and says I’m ready to go. I say where Jackie she says to go to my hair appt. Omg I tell her its 3 sm Jsckie time to go back to bed. So I put her back to bed and she never remembers the incident. I cant wake her up at times in the morning and that scares me. I wonder if she dont have a little sundowners in her too? Sigh!!

Not sure if this is dementia: my husband has been having weird episodes for a little over 2 years. They started slowly and occurred very infrequently (maybe two or three times a year and weren’t as severe as now. They now occur multiple times a week) Episodes include: a sudden change in his expression and eyes (they look bloodshot, odd and empty), slurred speech, swaying while standing which often results in him falling, strange movements such as clapping loudly for no reason and when he tries to pick up objects he cannot. And no, he has NOT been drinking during these episodes because some of them begin while I am next to him. And he does not use illicit drugs. The worst of these episodes include him becoming very mean/verbally abusive towards me, repeating the same thing over and over, agitation, yelling, and once or twice he has had urinary incontinence. I’ve had to call an ambulance a handful of times to try and pick him up – I can’t lift him when he falls.

He has been on the lowest dose of an SSRI since December which has quieted the little things in his mind, but the Lexapro doesn’t stop the episodes. Some of them can be quite mild. Even more strange is that recently, I asked him to take something i was cooking out of the oven. He did, but then threw it in the trash! And also, I came back from a weekend away with my sister and I knew he was in a “mood” as soon as I returned home. He actually had coffee made which was odd – we only drink coffee early in the morning. And when I asked him why he was making it he said he thought I might have wanted some coffee. Totally out of character for him.

He is now employed and after every day or working at a desk job/the gym, he is totally EXHAUSTED, unnaturally so for a 50 year old man. His exhaustion can sometimes bring on an episode. At first I didn’t think it could be dementia, but the fact that in the evenings he’s so wiped out, and the other recent events like throwing away part of our dinner and the coffee thing, is making me think otherwise.

COVID seemed to blow the lid off of whatever is going on in his head as we both lost our jobs for nearly a year, plus all of the political unrest, the virus, etc… this caused him extreme stress and has made everything worse. Neurologist suggested it could be hepatic encephalopathy, or FTD – a type of dementia that occurs in younger adults and effects the frontal lobe of the brain, which has to do with language, empathy, judgment. Memory is usually the last thing to go with this type of dementia.

We wont know until he gets his MRI and a bunch of other tests, including the results of his blood panel.

Sorry for the long message, but I just had to vent about this. I just don’t understand what this could possibly be and waiting for all of these things to be done is just so stressful on top of dealing with this on a now almost daily basis.

Has anyone else had experience with anything like this?

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