It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....



Alzheimer's Disease & Dementia Message Board
Post New Thread   Closed Thread
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 11-12-2008, 10:54 AM   #1
Newbie
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hilo, HI 96720
Posts: 3
Ada1676 HB User
Husband has Alzheimer's and startng to wander at 3 AM

Feeling a bit stressed out taking care of him. Things are getting worse everyday. Thats to be expected with this awful debilitating disease.

My husband is 84 started having symptoms in 2004.
His mother lived with Alzheimer's for 20 years. One of his
sisters and brother have symptoms of short term memory lost
Anyone in his family that look more like his mother end up with Alzheimer's.
One sister died from it a few years ago.Had to sign power of attorney papers.

I do not know what stage is at right now. He has forgotten
who people are. He is unable to bathe himself due to the fact that he forgot
what things are. One day while he was bathing, when I opened the door he was under the bathtub faucet rinsing off. From that day I started helping him bathe.

If I tell my husband not to wonder off he gets really angry. At times he starts yelling when you tell him not to. Sometimes I forget to use psychology and start arguing with him about things he shouldn't do.


His dementia gets really bad around 5 or 6 PM. He starts packing some things to get ready to go somewhere. Stacks his shoes in different places. Some shoes get lost temporarily. Hides his wallet and starts accusing family of taking money from his wallet. Some days he says more better you put me in a home. Puts somethings in the car. He gets really mad, if you do not use psychology in choosing the words you use. Like toddlers will do the opposite if you say for example, don't touch the cat.

When his dementia subsides, if he is in a good mood, has a sense of humor. At times he starts talking in French. When I was watching a video about Alzheimer's
. When it got to the part about finances,, he started joking about it. What he said about it, had to do with thinking family taking his money.

Ada






.

Last edited by Ada1676; 11-13-2008 at 12:24 AM.

 
Sponsors Lightbulb
   
Old 11-12-2008, 02:41 PM   #2
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: charlotte, nc, usa
Posts: 7,136
Gabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB User
Re: Husband has Alzheimer's and startng to wonder at 3 AM

Welcome to the board Ada. I regret that you need to be here but you have found the right place. All of us are dealing or have delt with loved ones that are suffering from various forms and different levels of dementia so we all understand what you are going through. We do understand!!!

Everything you have described is typical/classical symptoms of dementia. A few questions. Is he on any medication for aggitation, anxiety, or control his anger outburst? Do you have any help? I assume he is still at home? Do you have power of attorney for him? That is absolutely necessary because he is unable to make the financial decisions and you need to be able to act for him. You also need the necessary medical power of attorney, living will, or medical directive so you can make medical decisions for him. It you do not have these it would be a good idea to do that immediately.

There is no need to argue with him. His reality is what he knows and it is as real to him as yours is to you. It is frustrating at best but you won't get anywhere with the argument. The dementia being worse around 5 or 6 PM is called Sundowning. It is typical of dementia patients. The experts don't know why..... they just know it is. Mom and Dad both get their "happy pill" about 4:30 PM. It is a low dose of antianxiety medication that helps them get through this rough time of the day. The paranoia is also common. They don't have all the facts and can not store those facts in their head. Because they can't figure out what is really going on it leads them to think that somebody is doing something to them. This is also because the part of the brain that helps them rationalize and control impulses is damaged.

It sounds like you do or will soon need some help with him. You can not stay up 24/7 watching him. The wandering usually gets worse before it gets better. I resisted for a long time but Mom and Dad are now in Assisted living. I figured out that I could not do the work of 3 fresh, well rested shifts of caregivers plus nutritional, medical, recreational, and other staff. Mom and Dad didn't want to leave their home but after a year I can tell you it's much better now than it was when they were home. I see my Dad's good humor more now than I did when he was stressed about keeping up the house and Mom's good humor shows through sometimes now that she doesn't have the responsibility she couldn't handle.

I do understand that inherited factor. My Mom's Mother had ALZ and several of her sisters as well. Some of Mom's half sisters also had ALZ and now Mom has it. Dad's dementia is vascular and a result of all his circulatory problems (heart, PAD, ect). Oh well....

Keep typing here Ada. We have great shoulders, good ears, occassionally good advice, and most of all we do understand. I will keep you and your hubby in my thoughts and prayers.

Love, deb

 
Old 11-12-2008, 04:00 PM   #3
Newbie
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hilo, HI 96720
Posts: 3
Ada1676 HB User
Re: Husband has Alzheimer's and startng to wander at 3 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DGabriel10 View Post
Welcome to the board Ada. I regret that you need to be here but you have found the right place. All of us are dealing or have delt with loved ones that are suffering from various forms and different levels of dementia so we all understand what you are going through. We do understand!!!

Everything you have described is typical/classical symptoms of dementia. A few questions. Is he on any medication for aggitation, anxiety, or control his anger outburst? Do you have any help? I assume he is still at home? Do you have power of attorney for him? That is absolutely necessary because he is unable to make the financial decisions and you need to be able to act for him. You also need the necessary medical power of attorney, living will, or medical directive so you can make medical decisions for him. It you do not have these it would be a good idea to do that immediately.

There is no need to argue with him. His reality is what he knows and it is as real to him as yours is to you. It is frustrating at best but you won't get anywhere with the argument. The dementia being worse around 5 or 6 PM is called Sundowning. It is typical of dementia patients. The experts don't know why..... they just know it is. Mom and Dad both get their "happy pill" about 4:30 PM. It is a low dose of antianxiety medication that helps them get through this rough time of the day. The paranoia is also common. They don't have all the facts and can not store those facts in their head. Because they can't figure out what is really going on it leads them to think that somebody is doing something to them. This is also because the part of the brain that helps them rationalize and control impulses is damaged.

It sounds like you do or will soon need some help with him. You can not stay up 24/7 watching him. The wandering usually gets worse before it gets better. I resisted for a long time but Mom and Dad are now in Assisted living. I figured out that I could not do the work of 3 fresh, well rested shifts of caregivers plus nutritional, medical, recreational, and other staff. Mom and Dad didn't want to leave their home but after a year I can tell you it's much better now than it was when they were home. I see my Dad's good humor more now than I did when he was stressed about keeping up the house and Mom's good humor shows through sometimes now that she doesn't have the responsibility she couldn't handle.

I do understand that inherited factor. My Mom's Mother had ALZ and several of her sisters as well. Some of Mom's half sisters also had ALZ and now Mom has it. Dad's dementia is vascular and a result of all his circulatory problems (heart, PAD, ect). Oh well....

Keep typing here Ada. We have great shoulders, good ears, occassionally good advice, and most of all we do understand. I will keep you and your hubby in my thoughts and prayers.

Love, deb
Aloha Deb,

Thanks for posting.

My oldest daughter name is Debbie.

Is he on any medication for agitation, anxiety, or control his anger outburst?

Not taking any anxiety meds at this time. One of the first anxiety meds was Risperdal. Took him off Risperdal after started having some bad side affects.
Heard that it is one of the worse pills to give to anyone.

He is on Namenda and Aricept.

Do you have power of attorney for him?

Yes, did that after he started, going to the bank and withdrawing large sums of money. One day he withdrew $3,000.00, and forgot where he put it.

Do you have any help?

No professional help yet.

Yes he is still at home.

My next door neighbor has a care home in her house.
She turned three bedroom in to six. She and her husband work for a hospital.

My oldest daughter and her three daughters live on the same island.
If I need help they are available when I need them. We live on the big Island of Hawaii.

He is wearing a GPS tracking bracelet available from the state.
A 300.00 device that was offered for free. Just started offering it for use.
It is free because it is in a testing stage. We were offered it to help test it out. It will not keep him from wandering. Been thinking about buying some double key deadbolts. Just afraid of the safety issue if there was a fire.

My son in law put in a motion alarm by the bedrooms. My husband did not like it so I turned it off.


Best wishes, to all that are dealing with family that have Alzheimer's

Thanks and take care,

Ada

 
Old 11-12-2008, 06:43 PM   #4
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: charlotte, nc, usa
Posts: 7,136
Gabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB UserGabriel HB User
Re: Husband has Alzheimer's and startng to wonder at 3 AM

I am glad you do have some help. That is so vitally important if you are trying to keep him at home because it appears he is not able to stay home alone.

They also put my dad on Resperdal and had to take him off of it. He just simply has a 4:30 ativan and a prn ativan that is given when he needs it. It has calmed down the sundowning and gives us something we can use on those really aggitated days. It doesn't turn him into a zombie and he has had no side effects... except that he's much easier to live with We have tried several medications on both Mom and Dad to find the one that worked for them. Maybe you could ask the doctor for something else for the aggitation, pay attention to the effects, and then decide if that one is right. There are lots of them out there and something will help.

I understand the money issues. That was the first symptom that hit home with Mom but she tried to give some third rate insurance guys she met at a restaurant $250,000. They got their hands on part of it but I did get it back... except the capital gains, penalties, etc that we lost from cashing out long term investments GRRRRR!!!

WOW, great on the free GPS. At least you have the comfort of knowing if he does get lost you can find him. Wish all states would do that. Dad had an alarm bracelet for a while. It sounded every time he went out of the assisted living facility door. He could not hear it but they could. He now just wanders on the 3rd floor and there are no outside doors up there.

I would turn the door alarm on at night after he goes to bed. That way you will be alerted when he gets up and goes out of the room at night. A wanderer is a slippery sly creature. I learned that the last time I stayed with Mom and Dad. Dad got up, dressed, and out the door without me hearing him. The care givers brought him back to me. I undressed him, got him back in bed, and thought he was asleep... he was snoring. Later.... the caregivers brought him back to me again. That time I hid his shoes. He will NOT go out without his shoes and he woke me looking for them It it good to have some sort of alarm at night.

I do understand your concerns about the dead bolt double key locks. One of the other gals had a good suggestion. Put a simple screen door hook and eye latch somewhere at the top of the door. It's easy for you to unlatch but difficult for him to figure out. Or perhaps a child's cabinet latch. It would just be enough for him to make enough noise for you to hear.

And my daughter's MIL is in Hawaii. My daughter made her first trip to Hawaii about 18 months ago and did visit the big island. She LOVED it. They plan to go back next summer and I hope to go with them. I have never been but perhaps one day!!! It is a dream of most mainlanders

Keep posting!! Just venting sometimes helps.... I know because I do it enough myself

Love, deb

 
Old 11-13-2008, 02:24 AM   #5
Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 446
Beginning HB UserBeginning HB UserBeginning HB UserBeginning HB UserBeginning HB UserBeginning HB UserBeginning HB UserBeginning HB UserBeginning HB UserBeginning HB User
Re: Husband has Alzheimer's and startng to wonder at 3 AM

We were told that AD patients tend to look straight ahead, so that the child latches should be at the top or bottom of doors. We were also told to put a dark floor mat in front of the door. Patients' depth perception can be impaired, and they may view the mat as a hole or uneven flooring that can slow them down even more. (I'm not sure about that, since my husband can walk around in the dark as easily as in the daytime.)

It sounds as if you're describing sundowners syndrome, where Alzheimers' patients become very restless at the end of the day. It's supposedly very common, and might be worse when the patient has had a lot of activity or some stress during the day.

Some advice says to keep the patient active during the day so they sleep at night. Other experts say that a lot of activity can make sundowners worse. You may have to try both, to see which one works for him.

 
Old 11-13-2008, 05:24 AM   #6
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Martha H's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Middlebury, IN
Posts: 4,695
Martha H HB UserMartha H HB UserMartha H HB UserMartha H HB UserMartha H HB UserMartha H HB UserMartha H HB UserMartha H HB UserMartha H HB UserMartha H HB UserMartha H HB User
Re: Husband has Alzheimer's and startng to wander at 3 AM

Dear Ada,

My Mom was also a night wanderer. I had moved in with her because she was becoming more and more needy. I went to work by day but was home with her the rest of the time.

Nights was when she got up to 'do things'. Anything from rearranging the forks, spoons and knives in the kitchen drawer, to clearing out the refirgerator by throwing lots of usable food into the garbage, or decideng to go for a nice walk in her thin nightgown along the streets of Queens, New York City. I learned to be a very light sleeper, because I had to go after her several times.

We had a lock and a chain in the door which caused her great difficulty in the daytime. But in the middle of the night she opened them easily and out she was.

Wandering is a sign of worsening dementia, since they have lost the ability to know night from day, sleep time from waking hours, and without goal or real motivation, run off to 'do things.'

Mom was in that stage for around 5 months before a broken hip confined her to a wheelchair and a nursing home.

If your husband needs around the clock care, I highly recommend a good nursing home. People on 3 shifts who come in rested are better with a patient than a dead tired daughter or wife who has to get up for work in 2 hours ...

Love,

Martha

Last edited by Martha H; 11-13-2008 at 05:26 AM.

 
Old 11-13-2008, 06:49 AM   #7
Junior Member
(male)
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: GA
Posts: 29
jim816 HB User
Re: Husband has Alzheimer's and startng to wonder at 3 AM

Ada,

Welcome, there is some good experienced help available here. You are not alone in this journey.

If your husband is having trouble with both sundowning and waking up at night, you might ask his Neurologist about prescribing Seroquel for him. A small dose of Seroquel early in the afternoon will help control the sundowning. If you will give him his Aricept and one Nameda at bedtime along with Seroquel, it will help him (and you) get a good night's sleep.

My wife is on all three medications, we give her 50 mg of Seroquel in the AM with one Namenda. 75 mg in the afternoon and 75 mg at bedtime along with the Aricept and one Namenda. This is a larger dose of Seroquel than most patients start out with, but as the disease progresses more will be required. The maximum dose of Seroquel is over 500 mg a day, so the drug has a lot of flexibility. If she needs a little more Seroquel to help her through a rough day or time the Neurologist has given me permission to increase the dose antother 25 or 50 mg. This regimen may help your husband.

 
Closed Thread

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Board Replies Last Post
Alzheimer attack on a loving Husband CAJ0818 Alzheimer's Disease & Dementia 28 01-31-2010 01:54 PM
How can I calm husband so he will go to bed? joanroberts104 Alzheimer's Disease & Dementia 17 01-25-2010 07:25 PM
suggestions for mom struggling w/ mother w/ alzheimer's Tracie1204 Alzheimer's Disease & Dementia 15 06-23-2008 09:48 AM
Fewer cases of Alzheimer compared to 2002 Martha H Alzheimer's Disease & Dementia 0 02-21-2008 01:08 PM
Need some advice - family history of Alzheimer's weschmom Alzheimer's Disease & Dementia 5 01-06-2008 05:58 PM




Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Join Our Newsletter

Stay healthy through tips curated by our health experts.

Whoops,

There was a problem adding your email Try again

Thank You

Your email has been added




Top 10 Drugs Discussed on this Board.
(Go to DrugTalk.com for complete list)
Aricept
Aspirin
Ativan
Morphine
Namenda
  Reminyl
Risperdal Seroquel
Xanax
Zoloft




TOP THANKED CONTRIBUTORS



Gabriel (757), ninamarc (157), Martha H (124), meg1230 (93), angel_bear (68), jagsmu (55), Beginning (51), TC08 (44), ibake&pray (43), debbie g (37)

Site Wide Totals

teteri66 (1166), MSJayhawk (1000), Apollo123 (899), Titchou (835), janewhite1 (823), Gabriel (758), ladybud (747), sammy64 (668), midwest1 (665), BlueSkies14 (610)



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:23 AM.



Site owned and operated by HealthBoards.comô
Terms of Use © 1998-2014 HealthBoards.comô All rights reserved.
Do not copy or redistribute in any form!