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My brother lives with my mum who has dementia.

Tony small

New member
Aug 1, 2020
my brother is struggling particularly in the evenings with our mum. Not sure what to advise or how to help?
Can anyone help or advise please
Thank you


Registered User
Jan 16, 2020
It's really difficult as each person can fluctuate daily I would definitely encourage eating the evening meal together and watching happy films that she would enjoy I would avoid the news as sometimes over time the pwd can sometimes question above and beyond what is their reality not the way you or I would view it. Also some light music too what you have to remember is her day today could be better or worse tomorrow this where a lot of people struggle good luck x


Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
High Peak
The first thing that comes to mind is to give your brother a break if you can. If he's with your mum 24/7 he will really need it. Even if you could just sit with your mum for a few hours (or a whole weekend!) your brother can have some time off - I'm sure that would help.

Because you probably can't change your mum's behaviour.

If she's suddenly become 'difficult' or anxious it may be worth speaking to her GP as she may have a UTI.


Volunteer Host
Apr 1, 2016
Welcome to Dementia Talking Point @Tony small

I’m assuming your brother lives alone with his mum? I used to care for my dad with dementia and (I didn’t live with him) the thing I’d have found most useful was to be able to get a break from caring on a regular basis as @Jaded'n'faded has suggested.

Increased confusion and difficult behaviour in the evenings could be sundowning, something my dad didn’t suffer from but I know it’s common and other will probably be along soon with some ideas of how to deal with it.

Could you give more details of what’s happening so people may have a better idea of how to deal with these issues.


Registered User
Jun 19, 2016
Dear Tony,

Apart from investigations for UTI this is what used to help dad when sundowning. First of all seeing other people, in your brother's case I think now's a good time to involve carers and taking your mum out for a short stroll. I did this with dad and it usually worked as he could fresh air before bed. However at some point your mum is going to need more care so residential will need to be considered at some stage. Also how about a day centre this didn't work out for dad but after respite in his care home I had no trouble taking him back there once a week.


PS: A warning about sundowning is that your mum may not recognise your poor brother during this period so a phonecall each evening would help them no end. It would distract your mum and let your brother know that he is not alone. Also my brothers and I used to do face time which is even better.


Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
Welcome from me too @Tony small

It seems that your brother might have quite a lot to cope with - does he have help from carers or is he managing on his own? As already mentioned, if you can provide us with a bit more background about your mum and your brother it will help us to help you. Keep posting as there is a wealth of knowledge and support here.

Paul G R

New member
Aug 11, 2020
Hi Tony,
I was caring my mum who had Alzheimer’s, I have an older brother, who lives 10mins walk from us, all he said was that I had a lot of caring to do, I haven’t had any contact from him for the last 10 months.
With my mum, I thought I would able to cope with caring for my mother but with her Alzheimers it kept getting worse, she kept peeing herself, and refused to use the toilet.
I had 1 career coming in every Morning to wash and clean her. A few months ago she started to strip herself naked, and sometimes go to a window (naked) a wave to people, this was usually when I was somewhere else in the house (like when I was having a wash and shave).
I use to ask her what she wanted for her meals, and when I had them ready she would refuse to eat them. Also she infrequently slept, so I didn’t sleep a lot (about 3-4 hours a day), it caused me to have epileptic seizures. Also taking care of my mother had stopped me from going out, and also I have lost most of my friends (so were they really friends), so I had a social worker to give her an assessment, a few days after the assessment the social worker said about a care home on respite (4 weeks), at the moment she is still at the care home, but she has got use to the care home, she doesn’t strip herself, she sleeps better, the only thing is that she still doesn’t eat much. My mother is also interacting with the other patients and careers/nurses. I do miss my mother (as the care home, not excepting visitors, due to the Covid-19), but I am thinking about would it be worth it to have her back home, or leave her at the care home, as I’m not a professional career, and I’d be here alone looking after my mum, and there is about 10-15 careers there all the time. Another thing is if I decide to have her back home, am I just thinking about myself, and she might go back to how she was, if I decide for her to stay in the care home, i would know that she was properly taken care of, and safe, but some of the rest of the family (some of my nephews) doesn’t like the sound of their Nan being left in a care home.

So my big decision is what is best -
A) my mums health and safety
B) myself, and looking after my mum back home
C) family, (but my nephews live 40 miles away, and have jobs and their own families)

This might be about my mother, and nothing to do about you, your brother and your mum, but I just thought that if you hear about someone’s else experience, and decisions might help.
Good luck