Is the Elderly Man Sucking at Night? Can Be Because of Sundowning Syndrome!

Is the Elderly Man Sucking at Night? Can Be Because of Sundowning Syndrome!

Is the Elderly Man Sucking at Night? Can Be Because of Sundowning Syndrome!

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Is the Elderly Man Sucking at Night? Can Be Because of Sundowning Syndrome!

If you live with an elderly person who has Alzheimer's disease, you must be aware of a change in behavior in the afternoon or late at night. This condition is called sundown syndrome or sundowning syndrome, which means a late night syndrome. Although it cannot be completely stopped, this syndrome can be managed. See the following review about sundowning syndrome and how to overcome it.

Overview of sundowning syndrome

Reporting from WebMD, one in five people with Alzheimer's or dementia can experience this syndrome, but it can also occur in older people who don't have Alzheimer's or dementia. The cause of this syndrome has not been confirmed, but some scientists argue that this change is influenced by the brain's ability and the body's biological clock in the elderly who have begun to be disrupted.

Some of the symptoms that appear in this syndrome are changes in mood to become anxious, upset, confused, feeling suspicious about something, or can also scream and hallucinate. The trigger for this condition usually occurs when the area around the patient is darker or dimmer, feeling tired or frustrated, bored, having a sleep disorder, starving or thirsty, and having difficulty separating the dream from reality (disorientation) so it feels dazed

How do you deal with elderly people with sundowning syndrome?

When this condition occurs, you need to stay calm, don't show your anxiety that can worsen his condition. Then, try to calm it down with the following:

  • Approach the patient and ask what is needed
  • Remind patients that it's late and better to rest
  • Reassure the patient that everything is fine
  • Accompany the patient, don't leave it alone

If the above tips have no effect at all, consult your doctor to get the best treatment and advice so the symptoms don't get worse.

What should be done to overcome the elderly with sundowning syndrome?

Symptoms of sundowning syndrome can be very severe but will improve in the morning. However, this condition can disturb other people who must rest and certainly interfere with the quality of the elderly's own sleep. Here are some tips for dealing with and overcoming elderly people with sundowning syndrome, such as:

1. Understand the trigger

Every elderly person with sundowning has a different trigger. For that, start paying attention and supervising its activities precisely in the late afternoon. In this way, you can find the trigger and can reduce or limit the elderly with exposure to these triggers.

2. Manage activities and habits

Try to schedule activities for patients, so that the routine continues to run normally and the patient does not feel confused or feel threatened by things he cannot predict.

If there are changes, then apply slowly to give the patient time to adapt. Not only home activities, but allowing the elderly to have time to just chat with neighbors or take a walk in the afternoon might help improve moods and reduce stress.

Then, don't let the patient smoke or drink alcohol which will disrupt their health. If the trigger is due to thirst or hunger, maybe you should go back to checking the elderly diet, for example providing a small snack in the afternoon and provide a glass of water in the drawer near the bed.

3. Create a comfortable atmosphere

Because the syndrome occurs when the sun sets, you can provide a comfortable atmosphere in the bedroom by closing the curtains and not allowing the surrounding area to become very dark. Prepare his favorite blanket and put family photos in his room so that the patient does not feel alone. Maybe you can read a story, open a small chat, or turn on music that can calm his heart so that the patient can sleep well later.

Even though you have to care for the elderly, you also should not forget about your health

The condition of the elderly with this syndrome may make you have less time to sleep or rest. However, you must stay healthy so you can monitor and care for your health. So, as best you can to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Consume a balanced healthy diet, exercise regularly, and get enough sleep. Maybe you need help from a partner or other person to take care of the patient alternately so you can still do the routines and hobbies that you like.

Also Read:

  • Get to know Diogenes Syndrome, the Extreme Psychological Disease in the Elderly
  • Watch Out for the 6 Symptoms of Geriatric Syndrome in the Elderly, Plus How to Deal With It
  • Beware, Too Pampering the Elderly Just Increases Death Risk

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