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Sundowning Syndrome in Seniors: How Senior Home Care in Boise Can Help

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Sundowning syndrome refers to a state of confusion that begins at dusk and lasts through the night. It is a common symptom of dementia in the elderly, and is categorized by an increased level of confusion, agitation, and wandering. Brought on by exhaustion, infection, low light, and an unfamiliar environment, it upsets the internal clock. As a result, sundowning can cause additional suffering for seniors and their caregivers. While troubling, there are ways to manage symptoms and alleviate its associated anxiety. Here is how  Boise senior care can help. 

Scheduling Daytime Activities

Having an active schedule during the day can help alleviate sundowning. Therefore, a home caregiver can help seniors create a daytime routine. For instance, home care providers can help plan activities and appointments in the morning, thereby avoiding sundowning symptoms during outings. Dementia sufferers living at home will need guidance to keep up with daily and nightly tasks. A home caregiver can help ensure that seniors complete and perform essential routines before dusk. 

Identifying Triggers

One part of alleviating symptoms is knowing what triggers them. While the cause of sundowning dementia is largely unknown, several factors can bring it on. However, these factors may be different and vary according to each person. A home caregiver will be able to observe the triggers that are causing a senior to exhibit symptoms. Also, they can make a list of common triggers and understand how to avoid them in the future. 

Reducing Nighttime Stimulation

Exposure to boisterous activity or noise during the nighttime hours can cause an increase in sundowning symptoms. For example, things like an upsetting or loud television program can increase agitation. A home care provider can help to decrease this by planning stimulating activities during the daytime rather than at night. Therefore, seniors living with dementia can benefit from the guidance of a home care provider who will help them avoid anxiety-inducing stimuli. 

Increasing Light Levels

When evening comes, the house can grow dim. This reduction of light can induce symptoms of sundowning in those with dementia and related illnesses. It can also cause an increase of shadows which can lead to confusion and agitation. In contrast, increasing the light can help alleviate the sundowning symptoms that dusk and darkness bring. A home care provider will be able to assist seniors in keeping a healthy amount of light in the house during the evening hours.

Limiting Daytime Napping

Difficulty sleeping is also common in seniors with dementia and sundowning. If they get too much sleep in the daytime, they are more likely to have trouble sleeping at night. In contrast, keeping active during the day can help deter evening restlessness. The good news is that home caregivers can help to keep seniors engaged during the day. By avoiding increased activity at night, seniors can experience better sleep patterns and fewer occurrences of nighttime agitation.

Engaging in Soothing Activities 

Those with dementia can benefit greatly from doing activities that induce calm. Likewise, the process of winding down at night can help offset the symptoms of sundowning. A home caregiver can help balance activities and plan a soothing time in the evening. Playing pleasant music or going through albums of old photographs can help induce a sense of wellbeing. Caregivers can encourage this process through companionship and plan special activities that increase calm. 

If your loved one is experiencing sundowning syndrome, A Better Solution in Home Care is here to help. They have an abundance of resources for senior care in Idaho. And they’re dedicated to making homes a place where seniors can thrive. Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, a caring representative is always ready to provide guidance and answer your questions. Please call (877) 585 9011 or visit their website to learn more. 

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