Ways to Help Your Senior Get Good Sleep at Night

 

Seniors, just like the rest of us, can struggle with frustrating sleep issues such as insomnia, with one poll finding that 44% of seniors experience one or more of the common symptoms of insomnia at least a few nights a week or more. In fact, the prevalence of sleep disorders actually increases with age.

 

Caregiver in Guelph: Senior Sleep

Caregiver in Guelph: Senior Sleep

 

Many seniors report that they are feeling more tired during the day and becoming less satisfied with their sleep as they age. Studies have shown that older Americans take longer to fall asleep, have an overall decline in REM sleep, and wake up more frequently during the night than younger people.

 

Research suggests that many of the issues that seniors have with sleep as they age can be actually attributed to physical and psychiatric illnesses as well as the medications used to treat them.

If your senior parent or loved one is receiving home care and struggling with sleep issues such as insomnia, there are ways that you or their caregivers can help them. Follow the guidelines below and remember to always talk with your senior’s health care professional if you are unsure about the cause of their sleep issues.

-Address emotional issues. Changes in life that can cause stress like retirement, losing the ability to drive, or the loss of a spouse or other loved one can all contribute to issues with sleep. If you suspect this could be the cause, talk to a mental health professional for guidance.

-Make better daytime choices/habits. If your senior is napping during the day, try and encourage them to stay awake. If caffeine has an effect on them, do not allow them to have anything containing caffeine after the morning hours, which could impact their sleep.

-Get sunlight. Try to ensure that your senior is getting at least two hours of sunlight a day. Keep curtains or blinds open during the day or consider using a light therapy box.

-See a doctor. Sleep-disordered breathing like snoring and sleep apnea, and also restless legs syndrome are some medical conditions that can have an effect on health and sleep patterns and occur more frequently in seniors. You can also talk to your senior’s doctor to see if any medications they are currently taking may play a role in some of the issues with their sleep that they are experiencing.

-Get them moving. A sedentary lifestyle can increase feelings of sleepiness during the day. Encourage your senior receiving home care to take daily walks with a caregiver, join a group exercise class with other seniors their age, or find a hobby that requires movement in the morning to help them achieve sleep at night.

-Create the right environment. Make sure your senior’s sleeping quarters are quiet, dark, and cool. Remove any lighting that might interrupt their sleep and use the assistance of a white noise machine if sounds are keeping your senior from falling asleep or waking them in the night.

If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring a Caregiver in Guelph, please contact the caring professionals at  Staff Relief Health Care 24/7 at (905)-709-1767.

Source:
Helpguide.org
Sleepfoundation.org

 

About Susan Di Michele

We have a team of dedicated healthcare professionals. We strongly believe in improving health and wellness of individuals, their families, and communities. Through nurturance, gentleness and compassion, our team strives to shine a light on what it takes to be role models of caring practice.
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