Getting a good night’s sleep is an integral part of life as it enhances both our physical and mental health. However, as we age, our sleep patterns are interrupted, such as waking up early, not getting enough deep sleep or inability to fall asleep. Although these might sound like a normal part of aging, it is essential to get better sleep for the elderly. For this purpose, it is crucial to understand and follow the sleep tips for the elderly sleeping issues for better sleep.
Having a good sleep means the body has the time to heal the cell damage that occurred during the day. Furthermore, better sleep for the elderly revives their immune system, thereby preventing disease.
However, insufficient sleep might lead to health problems like depression, memory problems, increased risk of cardiovascular disease, weight problems, breast cancer in women, and diabetes. Therefore, it is necessary to get proper sleep for older people.
Here are a few sleep tips for the elderly with sleeping issues.
Tips for The Elderly Sleeping Issues
For improving sleep habits, it is essential to follow these sleep tips for the elderly.
1. Warm Bath
A relaxing warm bath will reduce the temperature of the body. A drop in their body temperature will help the muscles relax and slow down, making your elderly feel tired. Hence, pampering your dear one with a warm bath will help them to get a good night’s sleep.
2. Set The Sleep Environment
It is vital to get your elderly into a proper sleep environment an hour before hitting the bed. Your loved one can listen to music, read a book, or try other ways to soothe to get better sleep. An ideal sleep environment will vary from one individual to the other. Therefore, it is vital to ensure what works best for your older parent.
3. Create Sleep Schedule
Ask your loved one to hit the bed only when they are tired enough to sleep. Train your loved one to use the bed only for rest and not for work or any other purposes.
Additionally, advice your dear one to move around; if they have trouble falling asleep for more than 30 minutes in bed. They can return to their bed when they are tired enough to fall asleep. By doing this, we can set a proper sleep zone for your loved one.
4. Avoid Long Naps
If your older parent is dealing with sleeplessness, then it is vital to advise them not to take prolonged naps. Saying no to afternoon naps might be hard especially if they have not slept well during the night.
However, if you feel your elderly’s everyday activity is affected by avoiding naps, then it is wise to let them take short naps. Short naps will boost their mental health and might not interfere with night-time sleep. Ensure these short naps last only for 20 minutes and that they take the naps before 3 PM for better sleep.
Every individual is different. If taking short naps does not interrupt their sleep at night, then there is no harm in short naps.
5. Avoid Alcohol during Bedtime
It is often under the misconception that drinking alcohol can aid sleep. Alcohol might reduce the time to fall asleep, but it will disrupt sleep. Having a good night’s sleep is essential for a fresh morning. The more alcohol your elderly drinks before bedtime the more disrupted rest they are going to get during the night-time.
6. Reduce The Intake Of Fluids At Night
Hydrating your dear one with fluids right before bedtime will cause disrupted sleep. In addition to impacting deep sleep, it will also have adverse effects on your loved one’s heart health. Therefore, make sure that your elderly reduces the intake of fluids right before going to bed. By doing this, they can sleep better without needing to wake up frequently.
Daily exercise has a positive effect on your body. It decreases stress, boosts mental health and most importantly improves sleep quality. The increase in body temperature while exercising and the drop in the body temperature after a workout will help your elderly to sleep better.
Also, in general, late exercises can interrupt sleep; however, it depends on every individual. Therefore, it is essential to know and understand your sleep patterns and workout accordingly.
It is easy to stay indoors at all times in this modern world. Nonetheless, our body needs sunlight. Going out in the morning daylight will boost your mind and keep you active for the rest of the day. In addition to increased energy and activity, it also improves the quality of sleep.
So, if you find your older parent staying indoors at all times, then it is better to advise them to go outdoors for sunlight. Indeed, getting some sunlight is one of the best sleep tips for the elderly with sleeping issues.
9. Maintain A Consistent Bedtime
Setting the body clock to your sleep pattern is vital. Make it a point to be consistent with your older parent's sleep schedule. Following these sleep practices regularly will get better sleep for the elderly.
Practice hitting the bed at the same time even during weekends; this way, the internal clock will know it is time for bed. Following the sleep schedule will help your dear one to fall asleep faster. This consistent sleep timing will help them sleep better for the whole night.
10. Reduce Sugar Intake
Consumption of sugary foods will affect the quality of sleep in your elderly. Having too much sugar in their everyday diet can lead to disturbed, restlessness, and frequent awakenings throughout the night.
Further, eating sugary foods will also distort your dear one’s appetite and can crave food at late nights. These cravings usually end up disrupting better sleep for the elderly. Therefore, the last sleep tip for the elderly dealing with sleep issues is to cut down on sugary foods.
A Word from Karev Home Caregivers For Better Sleep In The Elderly
Sleep problem is one of the most common concerns in the life of the aging parent. Being sleep deprived negatively impacts their quality of life. Therefore, it is imperative to treat sleep issues in the elderly.
However, some medical conditions might cause sleeplessness in your loved one. For this purpose, it is wise to seek professional help for better sleep for the elderly.
At Karev Home Caregivers, we understand that the sleep pattern of every individual is unique. Therefore, we ensure to create a safe sleep environment as per the needs of your elderly. In short, we make sure your elderly gets a good night’s sleep.