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Old 06-19-2016, 05:16 PM
 
70 posts, read 54,001 times
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My 90 year old mom has lived with me the past 6 years. She has dementia and most times is able to carry on a good conversation and recognizes everyone she's ever met. But...the past few months she's begun to hallucinate, especially at night. I had her hospitalized and tests run to see if a cause for this could be found. Nothing! Doctor says it's just part of her dementia. Okay, BUT...she's screaming out at night, seeing snakes in her bed, worms crawling on her, cats covered in poop and numerous other things. I do have a CNA who stays with her all night and she's having a horrible time trying to calm mom. I'm in the next room and hear the commotion most nights. Mom's doctor ordered 2 different meds to hopefully help with the hallucinations but they got worse and we had to stop them. Doctor now says we'll just have to learn to cope. How do we do that? I don't know whether to say I see the snakes or don't see them. Telling her you don't see them just enrages her but I feel like a fool saying I do. What would you do???
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Old 06-19-2016, 05:26 PM
 
Location: somewhere
4,264 posts, read 8,495,907 times
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Did they start any new meds prior to the hallucinations starting? She hasn't by chance been on the antiobiotic Levaquin has she?
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Old 06-19-2016, 05:34 PM
 
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No, Ajzjmsmom, no new meds prior to the hallucinations and never prescribed Levaquin. She's pretty much been on the same few drugs the past 15-20 years.
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Old 06-19-2016, 05:35 PM
 
5,548 posts, read 7,212,802 times
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Night terrors

They are horrible

Play along with them until she calms down. Yes mom I will take cat out. Yes mom I will clean the cat. Ok mom, I will trap the snakes in this box or something. It is ok I will get them out

Just got to take the burden off her and take care of things for her with her vision. And don't try to reason with her or convince her otherwise. You will take care of it and tell her to go back to sleep


Is all you can do

Dementia is a horrible disease
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Old 06-19-2016, 05:39 PM
 
Location: ☀️ SFL (hell for me-wife loves it)
3,494 posts, read 2,549,846 times
Reputation: 11204
Forget the doctor, you need Hospice. My Father in law received no treatment whatsoever from the regular 'doctors.' At her age/condition, the only thing that they can do for you now is (with the problem you're having) is suggest Hospice.
Hospice is able to diagnose the Sundowner's (or Night Terrors) she seems to be suffering from, and will give you the right medicine.

You can call Hospice 24/7...they need to witness the incidents in order to prescribe medications associated with helping this. At least in our case, FIL's doctor would not do this.

My FIL would stay up all night, 3 nights in a row, babbling, talking to things that were not there, seeing things that were not there, etc. That's what is happening to your mother.

Sundowners does occur mostly in the hours just before dusk, and during the night. We ended up having to sleep in shifts, because he was a risk to get out of his bed (hallucinating/bedridden) and break a hip, which he eventually slipped by us and did just that.

Also, some people associate Hospice with end of life, and it is...but not in the way some think. Our Nurse had to renew her contract with wife's dad every 6 months, and he was in their care for over a year. I've heard of some people being in Hospice even longer. As long as they are displaying certain symptoms, Hospice can help, and always renew their contract.

I wish so badly I could remember the name of the drug the Hospice nurse prescribed him, but I can't. But getting them involved as soon as possible will be your only peace
of mind in what I know is already an exasperating situation.

Each person is different, but Hospice will work with you to get the right medication, and the right dosage.

I cannot stress enough-----Get. Hospice. Involved. Now!

Last edited by TerraDown; 06-19-2016 at 06:29 PM..
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Old 06-19-2016, 05:48 PM
 
Location: Leaving fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada
3,989 posts, read 7,349,705 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TerraDown View Post
Forget the doctor, you need hospice. My Father in law received no treatment whatsoever from the regular 'doctors.' At her age/condition, the only thing that they can do for you now is (with the problem you're having) is suggest Hospice.
Hospice is able to diagnose the Sundowner's (or Night Terrors) she seems to be suffering from, and will give you the right medicine.
My FIL would stay up all night, 3 nights in a row, babbling, talking to things that were not there, seeing things that were not there, etc. That's what is happening to your mother.
Sundowners does occur mostly in the hours just before dusk. We ended up having to sleep in shifts, because he was a risk to get out of his bed (bedridden) and break a hip, which he eventually slipped by us and did just that.
I wish so badly I could remember the name of the drug the Hospice nurse prescribed him, but I can't. But getting them involved as soon as possible will be your only peace
of mind in what I know is already a exasperating situation.

I cannot stress enough-----Get. Hospice. Involved. Now!
I think TerraDown is right. Look into Hospice. The books I have for hospice talk about what you are experiencing. They can help you with a lot of other things, too. Call her doctor in the morning and explain and ask if hospice is appropriate now. They will come to your home and help you. You can call them 24 hours a day. Hospice is just as much for the caregiver as for the patient.

Last edited by photobuff42; 06-19-2016 at 05:49 PM.. Reason: Because I can't rep TerraDown again!
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Old 06-19-2016, 05:50 PM
 
3,604 posts, read 11,368,279 times
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When my husband hullucinates I usually respond by saying "yes that is horrible. Lets take care of it together." I'll take him to the bathroom and by the time we get back to the bedroom he is calm enough to go back to sleep. I know it makes no sense but taking him out of the room and back again seems to work. Just an idea for you.
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Old 06-19-2016, 05:50 PM
 
Location: ☀️ SFL (hell for me-wife loves it)
3,494 posts, read 2,549,846 times
Reputation: 11204
Ahh, I forgot that part. It was such a relief, Photobuff is so right on this one! They not only helped my Father-in-law, they helped us understand the process that was going on with him, and offer us education and support---and get him to sleep through the nights so we could have a half-normal routine again.
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Old 06-19-2016, 06:04 PM
 
70 posts, read 54,001 times
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Oh my! Mom's doctor is the director of Hospice in our area. She did send them out to evaluate her a few weeks ago. They found nothing wrong. Mom smiled and carried on the nicest conversation with the PA they sent. The PA told me as she was leaving that mom didn't fit the guidelines for being able to receive help from them at this time.
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Old 06-19-2016, 06:05 PM
NCN
 
Location: NC/SC Border Patrol
21,142 posts, read 23,075,421 times
Reputation: 23310
Quote:
Originally Posted by SPIDER04 View Post
My 90 year old mom has lived with me the past 6 years. She has dementia and most times is able to carry on a good conversation and recognizes everyone she's ever met. But...the past few months she's begun to hallucinate, especially at night. I had her hospitalized and tests run to see if a cause for this could be found. Nothing! Doctor says it's just part of her dementia. Okay, BUT...she's screaming out at night, seeing snakes in her bed, worms crawling on her, cats covered in poop and numerous other things. I do have a CNA who stays with her all night and she's having a horrible time trying to calm mom. I'm in the next room and hear the commotion most nights. Mom's doctor ordered 2 different meds to hopefully help with the hallucinations but they got worse and we had to stop them. Doctor now says we'll just have to learn to cope. How do we do that? I don't know whether to say I see the snakes or don't see them. Telling her you don't see them just enrages her but I feel like a fool saying I do. What would you do???
Is she taking any pain medications? It probably wouldn't make any difference because everybody's system is different, but I cannot remember the name of the medication I was given for back pain that caused me to see things. My doctor has listed it in my allergies and told me to never take it again. Some of the things I saw were really scary and my husband had to sleep in a chair beside me one night because I was frightened to go to sleep. Then I saw hula girls dancing on the bookshelf beside him and then the shelf appeared to be falling on him. I was hurting so bad I didn't mind seeing things if the medication made it go away. I realized the things were not real, but I can understand someone being upset when they are not believed. My husband just told me nothing was happening and the medication was causing me to see them.
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