1. Sunlight

    Sunlight Registered User

    Feb 12, 2007
    55
    How can I get some? I'm living with my mother who is probably in the early / middle stages of dementia. She is on Temezepam 20mg. Sometimes she sleeps until 3 or 4 o'clock and other nights she doesn't sleep at all. She comes banging on my door insisting I get up as well. I've tried every tactic I can think of to calm her at night but so far nothing is working - even begging her to go to bed. I work full time and don't know how much more of this sleep deprivation I can take. I am going to talk to the GP but was wondering if any of you have found any of the other sleeping tablets more effective?
     
  2. dmc

    dmc Registered User

    Mar 13, 2006
    1,157
    hiya sunlight,

    my mum is on zopiclone which is a sleeping tablet, but she does have times when she is awake in the early hours, even with that.
    i think a talk with your gp would be worthwhile, im sure there is something that can help
    good luck
    donna
     
  3. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    69,884
    Kent
    Sorry can`t help, but sympathize so much. It`s enough being deprived of sleep when you are retired, but if you have to work, it`s a nightmare.
    I can only suggest the GP again, to insist on something more powerful.
     
  4. Margarita

    Margarita Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    10,824
    london
    #4 Margarita, Apr 16, 2007
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2007

    when my mother was in those satges , she to would not sleep I got her sleeping pills And still she would wake us all up , I use to put the TV on in her room , but yes she still come in to my room , when I shouted at her lost my temper , she would get more confused and walk in to my daughter's room , put the light on and wake them up .

    I ended up giving up my job after 2 years of it i gave up main job . found jobs that would work around my mother , left a few job or other wise I was looking at care home . so gave up on working . I just could not balance the both , because of not sleeping at night time

    I was given medication for AZ , would not say that help her sleep , just as the disease progressed she sleep more at night time , or it could have been she became more settle with me , as we never use to live together , how long have you both been living together ?


    My mother still wake up at 6am , but at lest she sleep at night time now , late stages
     
  5. Momx4

    Momx4 Registered User

    Oct 19, 2006
    25
    Hello Sunlight

    When my mother was with us a couple of years ago,we found Zopiclone produced less night fears than Temazepan but Mum rarely managed more than 4 hours sleep even with that. She was taking a huge cocktail of different medication and I wondered about the interaction between them.

    DH and I reverted to the pattern of behaviour we used when we had newborns in that he would stay up until midnight and I would go to bed really early. Then I would take over from the early hours. That way both of us could have an uninterrupted block of about 5 hours. It wasn't ideal but it was something.

    Finally my Mum's condition progressed and it became too difficult to us to cope with the kids still at home, trying to study and wanting to lead a regular life. She managed in her own home with an intensive care package including a nurse in to cover nights at times (a level of help I couldn't get for her while she was staying with me) for a short while but eventually, after periods of hospitalization, she was moved to an EMI unit. I'm still not proud of giving up, so to speak, but I couldn't deal with the level of psychiatric care needed. When she became physically aggressive to one of the children in particular, I had to call time.

    I don't know how they manage the sleep patterns of the patients in the Unit. Certainly a routine has helped Mum. As she became unable to interpret change, different sounds - for example the vaccuum cleaner, a hair dryer and the unpredictable comings and goings of a household with young people - often disturbed her considerably. She is much calmer, a lot safer and has fewer hallucinations and paranoias though they haven't gone altogether.

    Sunlight, I do hope you can find medication which is beneficial. It is a tough time for all of you. Trying to hold it together with little sleep is awful. Do talk to your Mum's GP to see what can be done and also so that they are aware of your current difficulty.

    Best wishes.
     
  6. Cate

    Cate Registered User

    Jul 2, 2006
    1,370
    Newport, Gwent
    Hiya Sunlight

    Oooooo how I feel for you. Mum didnt live with me before going to the NH, but she used to phone me every night, ALL night. I used to be demented through lack of sleep, and like you worked.

    I have to say though, since she has lived at the NH she sleeps all night now, and I think its simply that she has company, and stimulation all day, so she doesnt sleep during the day, so therefore sleeps all night.

    Could it be that your rmum is sleeping during the day when you are at work? If she doesn't all ready, maybe a day or two a week at a day centre might help, and if she is tired enough, you may even get a nights sleep.

    Best wishes
    Cate
     
  7. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,438
    This very much a personal opinion based on my expereience with one person (my mother) but I really do not think temazepan is an effective sleep aid for someone with dementia, or in fact, a particular effective sleep aid period. Mummy was given temazepan by her GP in ever increasing doses (you build up a tolerance) for several years before her strokes. It got to the point she was taking it every night (2 or 3 20mg tablets) and STILL not sleeping. Please note this is a highly addictive drug: not a particularly good choice for an 80 year old, nor for extended use. Furthermore, and this is the issue for dementia patients, when taken but not effective, you're confronted with someone who is both confused AND drugged: not a happy combination. Also, this type of drug seems to produce more of the "night terror" behaviours purely because it becomes more and more difficult to tell what's real and what's not.

    My expereience for what it's worth.

    Jennifer
     
  8. chip

    chip Registered User

    Jul 19, 2005
    400
    Scotland
    I know how you all feel. I went though hubby waking every two hours. It only took a few nights of it to floor me. The only way i could catch up was to have a sleep when he was at the day hospital or club, so the house suffered. With him on double strength clorazipam (for the seizures) he sleeps, only up once at night now, don't know if they are changing his meds and thats why he is in hospital now. So i will just have to wait and see if he sleeps when i get him home.
     
  9. Sunlight

    Sunlight Registered User

    Feb 12, 2007
    55
    Thanks for your replies everyone. I'm seeing the GP later this week and I'll try to insist on something stronger. I can cope with just about anything but the sleep deprivation.

    Margarita we have always lived together. I'm her sole carer - I have no family support and the dementia team in my area is totally useless.
     
  10. dmc

    dmc Registered User

    Mar 13, 2006
    1,157
    hi sunlight

    is there any way you could have night sitters in?
    my dad used to have 2 nights a week where a sitter would come and sit with mum till morning, not much i know but at least it would give you a break, if you have a CPN im sure they could arrange it.
    good luck
    donna
     
  11. Sunlight

    Sunlight Registered User

    Feb 12, 2007
    55
    Sorry to be dense Donna but what do the night sitters actually do? Do they literally sit up all night together? Would my mother go to bed? Would the sitter need a bed to sleep in but get up if needed?
     
  12. dmc

    dmc Registered User

    Mar 13, 2006
    1,157
    hi sunlight

    how it worked with mum is that the sitter would come and help get mum to bed the sitter would then stay downstairs awake, watch tv read while checking on mum through the night and dealing with toiletting ect.
    my dad would go to bed leaving mum to the sitter.
    i suppose its a sort of night shift for the sitter?
    worth checking, if your interested?
    donna
     
  13. Sunlight

    Sunlight Registered User

    Feb 12, 2007
    55
    Thanks Donna - definitely worth checking out.
     
  14. blue sea

    blue sea Registered User

    Aug 24, 2005
    270
    England
    Hi sunlight
    How I sympathise with your despair at the lack of sleep. I'm afraid this was one of the main facotrs in our family decision that dad had to move into an EMI unit instead of continuing living with us. It was heartbreaking at the time but really was the only way we could cope. He was too challenging for one person to manage during the day, never mind at night. He rarely slept for more than an hour or two at a time and would get up perhaps half a dozen or even more times a night, trying to get out the front door and needing constant attention. All the drugs the GP tried worked for a few nights then seemed to have little effect. The problem is that drugs that are strong enough to make them sleep cause other serious side effects and also increase severely the risk of falls, so rightly doctors are wary of prescribing them. I got to the point where I wanted to take sleeping pills myself if they couldn't get dad to sleep ( I never did of course but that's how I felt!). Although the care decision was a hard one, the EMI unit was much better suited to his needs as he could get up and wander round safely throughout the night as there were always night staff on duty and they would sit with him in the lounge, make him a cup of tea etc. By this time dad was also becoming very challenging in some of his behaviour and often needed two or three people to change him, bath him etc. His behaviour also made it impossible to have anybody round to the house as he would sometimes undress or urinate or even defecate in front of people. For these reasons too it became impossible to take him out.

    I'm not suggesting an EMI unit is what you should be considering , just saying that if it becomes necessary, try not to feel guilty as sometimes it is the only way for all of you as a family to survive. Some people with dementia seem to have particularly severe problems with sleep patterns. Although this changes for some in the later stages, it never did for my dad. Hopefully, however, your GP will be able to come up with a drug that will work more effectively and / or you will be able to follow up the night carer options (not heard of this but sounds brilliant idea). Hope this post hasn't made you feel even worse, just thought you might feel supported knowing that others have felt as desperate as you do now. The doctors often were dismissive about how little dad slept, saying he must be sleeping during the day, but the EMI staff actually did a log of his sleep patterns over a period of a few weeks and proved how little he slept. I know i felt close to a breakdown in the later stages when dad was living with us as I just could not function with so much interrupted sleep. I really hope you are able to get the right help.
    Blue sea
     
  15. Sunlight

    Sunlight Registered User

    Feb 12, 2007
    55
    The thought has crossed my mind as well!

    Sorry Cate I forgot to say that my mother goes to a day centre 3 days a week.
     
  16. Sunlight

    Sunlight Registered User

    Feb 12, 2007
    55
    Went to the GP today. He has changed the Temezepam to Zoplicone and will contact SS re getting more help for me. Here's hoping we get some sleep.
     
  17. dmc

    dmc Registered User

    Mar 13, 2006
    1,157
    hi sunlight

    im so pleased your getting some help, hope you see some improvement
    donna x
     

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