It’s hard to be at your best each day when you struggle to get a proper night’s sleep. Unfortunately, sleep patterns change and problematic sleep conditions begin to appear as we grow older, making it more difficult for the elderly to get the rest and relaxation that they need to stay physically and mentally refreshed. Home Care Assistance knows the value of quality sleep in improving the overall wellbeing of our clients, so we decided to consult our experts and publish a book about sleep! The Senior Sleep Solution: A Guide to Improving Sleep in Later Life is available now!
After explaining the importance of sleep and the stages of the normal sleep cycle, the book dives into some of the common conditions associated with poor sleep, including dementia, restless leg syndrome and snoring and sleep apnea. Symptoms and possible treatment options (both medical and non-medical) are thoroughly discussed. Lastly, the book offers some suggestions on how to return to a normal, undisturbed sleep pattern: what to do and what NOT to do! Here are a few examples:
- Set a consistent bedtime. Humans are creatures of habit. If your loved one consistently trains his or her body to go to sleep at the same time each night, then he or she will likely find him or herself getting drowsy right on schedule for a nice, long sleep.
- Avoid eating heavy, high-fat meals. Like nighttime television, these delightful culinary experiences are not always forbidden, but think twice before indulging just before bedtime. A heavy meal is likely to leave your loved one feeling overly full and uncomfortable as he or she tries to drift off to sleep and thus, increases sleep latency (the elapsed time between getting in bed and falling asleep). Large, high-fat meals may also excite the brain and bring on vivid dreams or nightmares.
- Do a few stretches together. Some people find that a few slow, gentle stretches before bedtime help them relax so that they can fall asleep more quickly. Signing up for a senior yoga or tai chi class will not only allow your loved one to socialize with peers but will also help him or her learn relaxing, flowing motions that are conducive to sleep.
For more tips on catching some additional shut-eye, pick up a copy of The Senior Sleep Solution today!