It is a misconception to think that you do not need as much sleep as you age. In fact, every one needs sleep, regardless of age. Seniors need at lest 6 to 8 hours of sleep per night. However, age can play a factor in the reason why you may not be getting the sleep you need. Why is this so and what can be done to help one sleep better?
First, you should need to look at some of the things that may be disrupting your sleep in the first place. Some of the most common factors that can affect seniors (or anyone) are:
Medical problems can affect our ability to rest. These can range from generalized pain to such conditions as: depression, acid reflux, headaches, arthritis, etc.
Any medication can disrupt our sleep patterns. They may cause us to become sleepy during the day or even keep us from being able to go to sleep at night. Some of the most common medications known to disturb sleep are:
• Beta blockers
• Asthma medications
• Over the counter pain medications
However, any medication can affect your sleep.
If you are not being active enough during the day, this can disrupt your sleep. For this reason, one should at least try to take a walk every day.
Naps can also disturb your ability to sleep at night.
What can you to help yourself to get a better night’s sleep?
1. Take a look at your environment. Examine your bed, pillow, etc. Is it time for a change?
2. Establish a more regular sleep pattern. Try to get up and go to bed at the same time every night.
3. Exercise more. Be more active during the day.
4. Don’t take as many day time naps and limit these to no longer than fifteen minutes a day.
5. Take a new look at your medications with your doctor and discuss if any of these should be changed.
6. Watch about drinking caffeine and alcohol close to bedtime. These can keep you awake.
Getting a good night’s sleep is imperative, if you want to have energy the next day and if you want to avoid such things as: chronic illnesses, depression and even weight gain.
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