As experts in eldercare, we have found that insomnia is definitely one problem that often affects older adults whether they live at home or at assisted living in Aliso Viejo. Getting a good night’s sleep can make a huge difference in one’s physical and mental health, so if you have an older loved one with insomnia, here are a few tips that might help.
The amount of sleep people require varies within every age and stage in life and somewhat depends on the individual. Typically, older adults need about 7 or 8 hours of sleep per night, perhaps even 9 for some people. But the quality of the sleep can be more important than the quantity. Many seniors at facilities for assisted living in Aliso Viejo report that they feel restless or have trouble getting to sleep, and there can be several reasons for this problem.
For instance, older adults often have to take several different medications and this can cause insomnia. As we age, people are more prone to sleep disorders and anxiety, both of which can cause insomnia or uneven sleep patterns. In addition, our bodies produce less melatonin as we age and this is a hormone that helps people get a good night’s sleep. Sometimes, you might need to get up and go to the bathroom frequently, which can interrupt sleep. While aging might cause one to have insomnia or restless sleep, there are ways to combat the problem.
One step would be to talk to a physician and discuss your sleep problems and have a general health exam. Your doctor should take into consideration the medications you are taking as well as any health problems you may have when working on a solution for the problem. If you need a ride to the doctor’s office, most facilities for assisted living in Aliso Viejo provide transportation so that residents can get to the doctor when needed. Sometimes simply adjusting medication or looking for an underlying physical cause for insomnia can be the solution.
One way to curb sleeping problems can be to set up a daily schedule and get up at the same time each day. Eat your meals at the same time during the day, and consider planning an early dinner. If possible, avoid drinking liquids before going to bed, as this can help reduce your need for getting up and going to the bathroom at night.
During the day, it is wise to schedule some exercise. Even if you have mobility issues, some level of exercise usually is a possibility. At assisted living in Aliso Viejo, you’ll find that there are many exercise options for all ranges of physical abilities. Getting outside for a morning walk or taking a dance class or exercise class can be a great way to ensure a good night’s sleep. Consider adding an exercise session early in the day and perhaps a light stroll after dinner or in the late afternoon. Getting outside can be very beneficial for all of us, so be sure to head outside during the day and enjoy the sunshine.
Food actually can have an effect on your sleep patterns. Some research suggests that there are several foods or types of foods that can help lessen insomnia. In general, a healthy balanced diet is always a good idea, so as much as is possible, try to make good dietary choices. Your facility for assisted living in Aliso Viejo will probably have an assortment of menu choices, and many of these are very healthful options.
Foods with magnesium and potassium, such as bananas, might be a good choice. There are many fruits that contain melatonin, such as peaches and apples, and this also might help reduce insomnia. Many residents at communities for assisted living in Aliso Viejo say that warm milk or chamomile tea prior to bedtime can be relaxing and help one fall asleep. Valerian root teas also can be very relaxing, but as with any dietary changes, it is wise to discuss your needs with a health professional prior to making any changes.
Living at a community for assisted living actually can improve your sleep habits, because your days can be filled with activities and there is very little stress or responsibility. Still, it also can be wise to consider your sleeping arrangements. Be sure that your bedtime clothes are comfortable and that your bed is also comfortable. Sometimes using a pillow wedge to slightly elevate the head can make sleep more comfortable or using a different firmness of pillow can help.
The most important advice we can give is that if you are suffering from poor sleep or insomnia that you tell someone about these problems. Talk to your doctor or perhaps the other residents at your home for assisted living in Aliso Viejo and ask them for some advice. Insomnia is a common problem, but it can be fixed, sometimes it just takes a little bit of time.