How’s your sleep going? Many people in the U.S. don’t get enough quality sleep, and that’s one reason why National Sleep Awareness Week, which was held this month from March 10th to 16th, is so important.
Sponsored by the National Sleep Foundation, this year’s theme has been “Begin With Sleep,” and it highlights the importance of a good night’s rest to achieve your life goals.
First, we’ll share a few facts about the importance of sleep. Next, we’ll share some tips to help aging adults achieve a better night of zzzzzz’s.
- Most adults need at least 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night. The specific recommendation for adults over age 65 is 7 to 8 hours nightly.
- About 44% of the aging adult population experiences insomnia, according to the National Sleep Foundation.
- Several factors can affect sleep and sleep quality in older adults, including medication use, snoring, napping, less exercise, and illness.
- Poor sleep could increase the risk for falls and could lead to cognitive decline, the National Sleep Foundation reports.
3 Ways to Improve Sleep as You Get Older
Most of us know that a good night’s sleep can be a challenge as we get older, but there are some things you can do to improve your chance of a restful night’s slumber. Here are a few tips:
- Have a plan for your pain. If pain gets in the way of your sleep on a regular basis, work with your health care professionals to come up with a pain-tackling game plan. Is there a medication (or other treatment) you need to help with your pain? Is there a way you can reduce your pain before you get ready to sleep, so it’s less likely to wake you up? If you’ve avoided seeing a doctor about your pain because, well, you just don’t want to, think for a minute about how that pain is affecting your quality of life and your sleep. It may be time to just see the doc and get the pain figured out.
- Set up a sleep sanctuary. What else can you do to improve the room where you sleep, to make it more sleep inviting? Think about your pillow, your mattress, bedsheets, lighting, and any sounds you may hear commonly at night. If you can’t block out all noise, consider using a white noise machine or a fan, or even earplugs. Give your sheets or pillows an upgrade if the ones you have aren’t comfortable enough.
- Observe how food affects your sleep. You know that full feeling you get if you eat a lot before bedtime, right? Make it a point to schedule your meals so you can avoid that uncomfortable feeling. Same goes for alcohol, which also can make you sleep less restfully. If you feel hungry before bed time, stick to something light and relaxing, such as a warm glass of milk or tart cherry juice—which, surprisingly, can help you sleep better at night.
Call Secure Aging to Find Out How We Can Help Seniors With Care Management
At Secure Aging in Bradenton, we transform the weight of the world into a sigh of relief for our senior clients and their concerned family members. The mission of Secure Aging is to protect and preserve our client’s independence and dignity through careful and thoughtful financial and care management. As our clients age, it is their desire to remain independent and age with dignity. Our services protect our clients from talented con artists looking to exploit and deplete the financial resources of our vulnerable seniors. Secure Aging helps families in Manatee County and Sarasota County and in and around the communities of Anna Maria, Bradenton, Bradenton Beach, Ellenton, Holmes Beach, Lakewood Ranch, Longboat Key, Myakka City, Palmetto, Parrish, and Sarasota. Call us at 941-761-9338, or visit us online at www.secureaging.com.