Is Excessive Sleepiness Normal for Aging Adults with Alzheimer’s?

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It could be alarming to see your senior parent with Alzheimer’s fatigued instead of full of the energy you’ve grown accustomed to throughout the years. Taking on daily activities could cause your loved one to lose that energy quickly, and you may notice him or her sleeping more during the day. The neurological changes Alzheimer’s causes impact physical and mental behaviors, including resting patterns. It’s best to know how the disease impacts sleeping and what steps you should take to keep your loved one as healthy and happy as possible as the condition progresses.

Lack of Physical Activity

Not remembering how to play sports or the fear of being around a group of people could lead to less physical activity for seniors with Alzheimer’s. They’re unsure how to complete the tasks and movements due to cognitive decline. The embarrassment causes them to withdraw from these things, but the inactivity may increase the odds of oversleeping. 

Finding fun ways to incorporate more physical movement into your loved one’s life may boost brain functioning. Customizing the games, exercises, and other activities according to your loved one’s physical and cognitive abilities is the best way to start. Physical activities could also help your loved one manage sleep by keeping him or her engaged and limiting daytime naps.

If your loved one is excessively tired or sleepy during the day, he or she may need assistance with the tasks of everyday living. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of at-home care. Rely on Assisting Hands Home Care to provide an individualized care plan to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our caregivers help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits, such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and we offer mentally stimulating activities that may stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.

Medications

The medication most commonly prescribed for Alzheimer’s disease is donepezil, which may cause insomnia. If your loved one is taking this medication, monitor his or her sleeping patterns and share this information with his or her primary care physician. The doctor could make necessary changes or make other recommendations to manage daytime fatigue. Poor sleeping habits may cause more brain cells to die. Therefore, you should handle the situation quickly and accordingly.

If your loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, compassionate help is just a phone call away. There are a variety of age-related health conditions that may make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face may be easier to manage if their families opt for professional elder care. Columbus families may rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep their loved ones safe and comfortable while aging in place.

Management Tips

Sleep disturbances may start slowly and increase significantly as Alzheimer’s progresses. As a family caregiver, you’ll need to help your loved one manage these disturbances, ensuring his or her body gets the rest it needs for treatment to work as well as to avoid negative behavior and boost his or her overall wellbeing. 

Establishing a routine of regular bathing, eating, and activity times could keep your loved one on a daily schedule and prevent unnecessary naps. Winding down during the evening hours could also lower the odds of sleep disturbances at night that lead to exhaustion during the day. Turn off bright lights, avoid loud music, and ask other family members to keep their tones lower while your loved one prepares for bedtime.

Without the right assistance, Alzheimer’s may be challenging for seniors and their families to handle. If you’re looking for professional Alzheimer’s care, Columbus Assisting Hands Home Care provides high-quality care aging adults and their families may count on. All of our caregivers are trained to help seniors with Alzheimer’s live happier and healthier lives, and we also provide specialized dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care. Call us at 614-678-5887 to create a customized in-home care plan.