• All threads and posts regarding Coronavirus COVID-19 can now be found in our new area specifically for Coronavirus COVID-19 discussion.

    You can directly access this area >here<.

My Husband is not sleeping - HELP


Registered User
Aug 4, 2014
Ex pat living in Sweden
My husband has Vascular Dementia and has gone down quite a lot in the last 3-4 weeks. He has been prescribed medicine for sleeping but it only lasts for around 3 hours. Then from around 1.30am for the rest of the night he gets up and comes in saying he can't sleep. I tell him to go back to bed as it is night time and we both have to sleep. He is out of bed again about every 10 minutes then he starts crying and cannot sleep. Even if I put him back to bed he still gets out again. He has got more and more confused and doesn't seem to know the difference between night and day and of course he can't read the clock. I feel we are getting to rather an acute stage as my lack of sleep means I can't function properly. We have carers morning and evening which is a god send. But when they come he is always asking for me although he is not anxious with them.

Last weekend our Son and family (they only live 15 minutes away) offered to have him so I could get some sleep. But he was adamant he was not sleeping at their house.

I am hoping he will be able to go into Respite for 4 days, this is attached to the day centre he goes to. It will only happen 1 week in 4 and thats if he will go.

I would value any comments and help that you may have on this problem.

Thank you,
disi x


Registered User
Apr 24, 2013
You cannot go on without sleep that's for sure. Could you sleep at your sons house and they could stay at yours? With the respite you will have to insist either that it is a doctors recommendation for him or for you whichever works best. I am also surprised that you have not been given any other medication if that is not working. Although Zopiclone worked for my husband it had to be topped up with Trazodone.

In Scotland the medication is recommended by the Memory clinic consultant to the GP who then prescribes to the patient. Maybe you could contact them to see what they think either by phone or through your CPN.

Sorry just noticed you are in Sweden.


Registered User
Jun 15, 2014
Hi Disi,

I assume your husband is mobile.

My dad, 87 years and very physically fit has mixed dementia. I live with him. He went through a stage of not sleeping and wandering. I was at my wits end.

Now, everyday, whatever the weather he has at least a mile long walk with me or his carer. Also, we expose him to as much natural daylight as possible. This seems to have helped. He goes to bed between 21.30 and 22.00 and is generally up at 7.

I hope this helps. Take care


Registered User
Aug 29, 2011
I would get some stronger sleeping pills prescribed for him and use when needed....losing sleep is not acceptable or healthy.
Last edited:


Registered User
Apr 5, 2010
Would putting some music on as background noise help? Perhaps he gets worried by the quiet around him.


Registered User
Mar 6, 2014
My wife hasn't slept through the night for nearly a year now - she wakes four or five times a night and needs to talk whether it's about a particularly vivid dream or noises in the night or about her fears for the future. She can't use sleeping tablets because she is hypersensitive to many meds and those we have tried make her catatonic. I would still say though that medication is the first port of call though. See your GP and I'm sure they will be happy to help


Registered User
Mar 13, 2014
For the whole of last year my husband who also has VasD and is in his early 80's would get up every night, dress, try to leave the house, wander about looking for 'things', think he had to go to the office etc. it was a nightmare. I found that music helped and he would eventually settle in front of the telly and watch Andre Rieu or the Three Tennors on DVD. I had an exit alarm on the front door and with that set could go back to bed for a couple of hours, don't know if that would work for your husband. Thankfully although my OH is worse both mentally and physically he has stopped that behaviour. He still gets up for the bathroom several times a night and I usually have to show him where it is but he goes straight back to bed afterwards. I do sympathise and hope you can get some help from the doctor.

Sent from my iPad using Talking Point


Registered User
Aug 4, 2014
Ex pat living in Sweden
Thank you for all your replies and suggestions. I totally agree that walking can help and usually when he is at home we do go out. He also has a short walk when he is at the day centre.

Unfortunately last night seemed to the worse we have had, started at 01.45 throughout the night. Coming into me so many times I lost count. Nothing at the moment seems to help. But I should add that my son and I have a time with our GP tomorrow afternoon to discuss what options are available, plus some short term stronger sleeping tablets.

His confusion has really shocked us how quickly he has deteriorated. He is like a lost child always wanting me day or night. We all know how hard it is to see our loved ones have this terrible illness. We have been married nearly 53 years - long time! I have shed many tears especially over the last 3 weeks and feel quite desperate sheer frustration not being able to help him overcome what ever is happening to him when he goes to bed.

I know the outcome will probably mean respite so I can get some sleep etc. But I worry what affect it will have on him and dread telling him. I would appreciate some of your views on dealing with this situation before and after coming home from respite. He is nearly 81 and I am almost 73.

Thank you for reading this disi x

Chaucer 1931

Registered User
Mar 30, 2014
Hi Disi

Im sorry to hear you are having this struggle with the sleeping problems,I have gone through the same too with my mum 84 yrs old and mixed dementia. She was prescribed an anti depressant-Mirtazapine for her sleep disturbances and anxiety which I think is a common part of the disease,this hasn't resolved all of the getting up and down in the night,but it has made a good difference.
I know that eventually this may not work for her,but it maybe would be worth asking the doctor to see if an anti anxiety medication would help your husband. I do hope you can get something to help you both get some rest.

J x