Make a Sundowning Plan. First watch and make notes so you know the pattern in your family member. Then apply the following:
1. Give a nourishing snack and drink one hour before usual start;
2. Revise sleep plans -- encourage longer night sleep, add after-lunch nap -- because dementia is exhausting for the person who has it;
3. Listen carefully to what is said during sundowning. Even though people may be wanting their Mom, their actual emotional statements are accurate -- loneliness, fear, uselessness and so on.
4. Sit by them and be the listener and comforter. You don't have to change their feelings (you can't anyway) but you can be the sympathetic witness. ("Oh, that must be hard." "I understand." "Of course you miss your Mom." blag blah blah)
5. Have a care plan ready -- drive in the car, fave DVD, making cookies together, looking through old pix of Mom and Dad (hers, not yours)
6. At worst, sit quietly right beside your person, maybe arm around the shoulder, read a book to yourself while sundowning does its work (which actually is deep emotional processing, not just wasted time and hullabaloo).
7. Resume normal life.
8. Remember that weeping does no harm -- just the opposite! (for you too sometimes!)
You can also make a lavender spray (real lavender essential oil, 10 drops in a spray bottle of water -- spray around). i;ve recommended this to lots of people and even in caqre facilities the use of lavender oil brings about less stressed behaviors. Must be real lavender though -- not some faky chemical pretender.
Please don't believe me. TRY these things. I've seen people no longer even do sundowning with a proper plan of intervention.