In this seventh installment of brief excerpts from each chapter in the book You Oughta Know: Acknowledging, Recognizing, and Responding to the Steps in the Journey Through Dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease, we look at the sixth step in the journey through dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease.
This post includes an excerpt from chapter 6, which provides a extensive look at how to acknowledge, recognize, and respond to the sixth step in the journey through dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease: sudden and dramatic mood swings in both directions.
This chapter shows that frequent, unexpected, and severe mood mood swings are the sixth step in the journey through dementias and Alzheimer’s disease. This chapter discusses how this step impacts our loved ones and us as caregivers. It also discusses practical, real-time, and loving ways we as caregivers should respond and help our loved ones traverse this step in the journey.
This series begins with the forward to the book and an explanation of why I wrote this book and why you should read it.
The steps in the journey through dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease are presented sequentially in the order in which they actually appear in the course of these neurological diseases.
There are no other books that literally walk through each step in sequential order as they emerge in the journey through dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease.
Additionally, there is no other book that discusses:
- The process we as caregivers acknowledge each new step – there is an acceptance period that we have to go through
- The process we use to guide ourselves and our loved ones with dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease through the recognition phase of each step
- The concrete, loving, and practical information on how we should respond and how we can help guide our loved ones’ responses
These are the things that make You Oughta Know: Acknowledging, Recognizing, and Responding to the Steps in the Journey Through Dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease unique and stand alone in the plethora of books about dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease.
Excerpt “Chapter 6: ‘How You Suffered for Your Sanity’”
“Dramatic and sudden mood swings are part and parcel of the journey through dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease, and they begin to materialize during the step of paranoia, but they can continue throughout the course of these diseases.
There can be several triggers for these mood swings: environmental, physiological, perceptual, and neurological. Sometimes all of these can be in play at the same time, but normally the trigger is singular.
Let’s take a look at each of the areas that can trigger a mood swing in our loved ones suffering with dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease and how we can respond to and/or eliminate them.
Environmental changes are often the trigger for sudden and dramatic mood swings. These can include something as seemingly simple as moving something out of a familiar place or having our loved ones in a setting they are not familiar with. It can also include the presence of strangers (or people they don’t remember) and it can include being asked to do something new or unfamiliar.
For example, one of the most common instances of these kinds of mood swings is with medical personnel. Most nurses, nurse practitioner, physician’s assistants, and doctors have stories about routine care they were providing for a patient with dementias and Alzheimer’s Disease that quickly deteriorated into yelling, screaming, aggression, and sometimes even physical assault.”