Tips for Elderly to Deal with Changing Sleep Habits

By on September 27, 2016
Tips for Elderly to Deal with Changing Sleep Habits

A good night’s sleep is essential for your well-being. It enables your body to restore depleted energy levels and get adequate rest. However, as you age, you experience changing sleeping patterns, which may cause insomnia and other sleeping issues. This can increase the risk of health issues such as apnea, heartburn, anxiety, and even diabetes.

According to an official report, 1 in 3 senior adults don’t sleep well. Changes in their circadian rhythm cause their bodies to enter the “deep sleep phase” late and wake up in the morning after 4-6 hours of sleep.

It’s quite normal for us to be regarded as “light sleepers” as we age, but it’s important that we get proper bedtime for our mental, physical and emotional wellbeing. Keeping that in mind, here are some helpful sleep tips to follow:

  1. A Heavenly Mattress Would Make a Difference

Seniors visiting a quality mattress store should be able to find an appropriate option for their sleeping needs. Ideally, the best mattress for seniors will offer support at every comfort level. Top mattress sellers will enable you to test out your options (pillow top, spring, foam, etc.) to determine what suits you the most. Additionally, some of them will display their current specials to give you a heavenly mattress within your price range.

  1. Avoid Caffeine & Alcohol

Stimulants such as tea, coffee and chocolates can make it difficult to sleep well because they include a good amount of caffeine. In fact, caffeine should be avoided after mid-afternoon because it raises mental alertness, which in turn causes the body to stay focused and alarmed. Likewise, it’s a smart act to limit drinking a few hours before bed to avoid being “up and down” during the night. While alcohol initially helps a person to sleep and relax, the kick keeps him/her to stay awake later in the night.

  1. Skip Naps & Exercise

If you find it difficult to sleep at night, taking naps during the day can make inimpsomnia intense. If you’re craving a nap, don’t sleep longer than 30 minutes in the afternoon. That said, skipping naps altogether can make it easy to sleep quickly and stay asleep for long. Another thing you can try is relaxation exercises as they calm your nerves and therefore help you sleep better. See if yoga, meditation, or progressive muscle relaxation before bed can aid your quest for proper sleep.

  1. Take Medication with Your Doctor’s Advice

Some older adults sleep better after taking sleeping medication. It’s especially important for seniors who’re suffering from an underlying disease. A doctor may prescribe a synthetic hormone that restores the sleep-wake cycle and helps an individual to sleep quicker. The doctor will advise them to take a medicine like this in milligram quantity a few hours before bedtime for some months if an older adult has insomnia. However, sleeping medications shouldn’t replace healthy sleeping habits, and should be taken on for a short-term. Drugs like nonbenzodiazepine drugs (Ambien, etc.) and benzodiazepine drugs (Triazolam, etc.) should be taken for only a month or so.

With these tips, you’ll be able to take control of your sleeping habits. It will take a while for changes to occur, but you’ll eventually experience better sleep.


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Tips for Elderly to Deal with Changing Sleep Habits