Healthy sleep habits are a major part of a person’s health. The problem is that many people aren’t able to sleep as good as they used to. This is the case for many senior citizens. If your elderly loved one has been experiencing sleep issues, let them know they aren’t alone. Many elderly people have circadian rhythm disturbances. These disturbances make it tough to fall asleep and stay asleep. However, there are some ways that you and home care providers can help your senior loved one to improve their sleep.
Getting on a Sleep Schedule
Even though it may be difficult for your elderly loved one to fall asleep and stay asleep, they need to start getting on a sleep schedule. When some people can’t sleep, they will get up and use electronics or do something else. However, that is just causing their sleep issues to continue.
You or a home care provider can sit down with your elderly loved one to determine what time they will go to bed and what time they will get out of bed in the morning. Once it is time for your elderly loved one to go to bed, they should lay down in the dark until they can fall asleep. When it is time for them to get out of bed, no matter how much or how little sleep they got that night, they should get up. They might be tired throughout the day, but the hope is that if they stay away during the day and continue this sleep schedule, eventually they can start sleeping better.
Staying Active During the Day
One of the reasons why many senior citizens don’t sleep well at night is because they are sitting most of the day. When someone sits most of the day, they aren’t expending barely any energy. This energy holds in their body, so they aren’t tired at night. If your elderly loved one is having trouble sleeping at night, you or a home care provider can try getting them to be active during the day. You can take walks with them. Your elderly loved one could also go swimming, hiking, or do exercises at home.
Your elderly loved one might not be sleeping well because there are too many distractions where they are sleeping. For instance, if your elderly loved one is sleeping in a room where there is a lot of light or noise, they probably aren’t going to be able to sleep very well. It is important to encourage your elderly loved one to have fewer distractions when they go to bed. They might need blackout curtains. If your elderly loved one needs some sound, you can get them a white noise machine.
These are some of the ways that senior citizens can improve their sleep. Share these tips with your elderly loved one today, so they can start getting better sleep.