Sundowning - What it is and how to cope!
This wonderful photograph of a beautiful sunset is sure to put a smile on your face. However, when the sun goes down for some people living with Dementia, it can be quite a challenging time of day.
Sundowning is not an illness in its own right, but a set of symptoms that can affect those living with Dementia. It can start in the late afternoon and/or early evening and unfortunately, the cause is unknown.
It can result in; confusion, anxiety, aggression, pacing up and down, being unable to settle or sleep.
So what can you do to help?
Many of our Support Workers visit our clients in the evening. If you suspect your loved one is showing traits of Sundowning, please get in touch to find out how we can help.....
- If the person is unable to relax - a fiddle muff may help by distracting. It is a hand muff with bits and bobs sewn on with the intention of providing a stimulating activity for restless hands
- Try to keep a routine for bedtime, waking, meals and activities.
- Keep activities during daylight.
- Try to discourage naps during the day.
- Try to avoid caffeine and sugary drinks later into the day.
- Provide a night light for when it is dark and surroundings become dark or unfamiliar.
- In the evening, try to provide a calming environment and avoid stimulating activities (gentle music or sounds of nature may help).
Further information about Sundowning can be found by clicking HERE