Daylight Saving Time can negatively affect those with Alzheimer's and dementia

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) — Daylight Saving Time has a direct effect on those with Alzheimer’s and dementia, as well as their caregivers. The time change can be confusing as those suffering from the disease are dealing with the loss of the concept of time.

The Alzheimer’s Association says as it starts to get dark sooner, those living with dementia will start feeling more fatigued in the evenings, which can cause confusion. They can also experience changes in sleep patterns, insomnia spells, and wandering. This makes caregivers' lives more stressful and tiring too.

Alzheimer’s Family Services Director Annie Marrs has some tips for caregivers for ways to help manage sleep issues.

"It’s up to the caregivers to brainstorm on how to water down drinks or look at decaffeinated or healthy snacks that can replace some of the items that might be normal or common and traditional for someone with Alzheimer’s disease."

Another tip Marrs suggests is to keep your house very well-lit into the evening hours to make it seem like daytime, then slowly start turning them off to help the transition go more smoothly.