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Ok I’ve always been a bit of a night owl and preferred shift work for this reason. In fact after 2 yrs, I’m still not adjusted to 9-5 life (I’ve tried earlier in life to only to return back to shift work). I struggle a lot with it as often my deepest sleep occurs when I need to get up for work.


However, why does my mum's cognitive ability peak late at night, like between 9pm - midnight.? And even further on if it weren’t me wanting to go to bed for work sake, lol.


I feel like I’m able to have much better conversations with her at night. There is a drastic difference to her cognitive understanding between day and Night. Her rational is also better, ie she’s able to reason.


At day time there’s often no reasoning and tantrums. She seems more confused at day.


She does get up rather late, ie brunch, sometimes lunch coz I allow her to rest while I start work or I wouldn’t get anything done.


What's going on here?


Having said that, I’ve always said about myself that my brain is most powerful in the afternoon at work. Is the same disposition at play here?

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Hhhmmm....young children often tire easily in the afternoon. Perhaps your mother could use that time to rest. Evenings-is it possible to get a sitter for her as the respite time for you and her? Could a shifting of her wake and sleeping times be done to accomidate her preferences?
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Cappuccino42 Feb 13, 2022
If I were to get a private carer then maybe I could get respite in evening but at the moment, the gov one is latest 2pm as I guess the staff finish at 5pm. It’s the same with the showering help, they will only do morning to early afternoon. But I don’t think the showering will work anyhow as they said unless Mum goes by own will, they won’t push and that she’s not allowed heating in there.
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Some dementias have fluctuating symptoms like vascular and Lewy body types. Also Alzheimer's in the early and middle stages. The quietness of the night and the absence of distracting noises might contribute. Enjoy her conversation now that you can.
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Cappuccino42 Feb 11, 2022
Thank you, yes I try enjoy the evening conversations with her (having my Mum back). It’s like I have a different person at day and then Mum visits at evening. Sometimes I even tell her about things she did during the day and she apologises saying “that is terrible if I’ve said/done that”.
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It was the same with my dear grandmother, you could sit down and have a converstion in the middle of night while she cooked, had it not been because I was exhausted I would have. The doctor told me is was called sundowning, a type of anxiety that keeps them alert and sometimes agitated once the sun starts coming down and theyre fully awake when everyone in the same household is sleeping. Their internal clock is altered. Except your mother is actually not confused, the brain IS a mystery.
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Cappuccino42 Feb 11, 2022
Yeah I’ve read about sundowning but what’s happening with Mum is almost like the opposite, she gets better as the sun goes down. For instance I won’t try and make her have a shower in morning or afternoon. Evening is best. She dislikes the tv at day and can get confused but watches movies at night. Unless she’s experiencing sundowning a lot earlier in the day and by evening it’s over...
My family have always been night owls and when I was doing shift work, I’d often have this spike of energy and clarity at night to sort things out. I’d be cleaning my house sometimes at 2am. Maybe Mum and I are much more alike,... but I think AlvaDeer is onto something below. I think it has something to do with anxiety. Perhaps pressure related to her past work life,....feeling like she’s meant to be doing stuff at day.
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Any chance that her anxiety level is less at night because "the day is over" and worries regarding it are as well? For my bro it was anxiety that was his enemy. As he tired a bit he calmed a bit. Each person is so different that I always say each case is as individual as their own thumb prints. Good luck figuring out this mystery.
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Cappuccino42 Feb 11, 2022
That could very well be the case that she’s less stressed at night. At day it’s like she needs to do stuff / go places (even if she doesn’t). Now that you say that,...She’s often putting her shoes on at day! At night there’s none of that. And I do know when she’s anxious, her symptoms are increased. It might very well be anxiety of needing to do stuff / being confused what she’s actually meant to be doing when there isn’t anything she needs to do. Like an imprint of her past active lifestyle ...
now I wonder if there’s any way I could bring it forward coz it would be great if she was at her cognitive best when we have dr’s appointments and when she has her outings etc. Her couple hour respite outing is often at her worst cognitive time. I’ve tried to make it afternoon but they can’t do any later.
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