Does your mind start spinning with everything you need to do the moment you lie down to rest? If you are trying to balance work, family, and caregiving, your life might feel overwhelmingly full, which can translate into a restless night. If you are a caregiver, getting adequate sleep needs to be one of your top priorities. Among other things, inadequate sleep can make you irritable, impair your memory, and lead to feelings of depression, all of which can make your job as a caregiver even more challenging. Ironically, the time in your life when you most need sleep may well be the time when sleep is the hardest to come by. Below you will find senior sleeping tips which you can use to help in enhancing your parents or loved ones’ daily life.
Start making sleep a priority. Senior Sleeping Tips:
If you think you are too busy to get a good night’s sleep, consider that many people find they actually get more done by setting aside more time for sleep.
#1 Senior Sleeping Tips – Decide when you will sleep.
You may need to arrange your sleep hours around your loved one’s care, but the exact hours aren’t important. What is important is that you establish set hours for sleeping and try to stick to them as much as possible. A regular sleep schedule trains your body to rest at the same time each day, making it easier to fall asleep. Keep in mind that most adults need 7-8 hours of sleep each night.
#2 Senior Sleeping Tips – Exercise daily (ideally).
Regular physical activity is one of the best ways to ensure that you will be tired enough at night to fall asleep. The key to fitting exercise into an already full life is to only do what you can do easily. This might not be the time for a yoga class or marathon training, but perhaps you can walk during your lunch break, take the stairs instead of the elevator, or use an exercise bike for 30 minutes instead of reading online news. Look at your schedule each morning and decide when you can fit in exercise, remembering that any amount of physical activity is beneficial.
#3 Senior Sleeping Tips – End your day with preparation.
Take steps the night before to get ready for the next day. You might lay out your outfit, set the table for breakfast, jot down a to-do list, pack a care bag to take to your loved one, or spend some time tidying up the house. Anything that makes you feel more prepared for the next day can take a load off your mind, allowing it to calm down more easily.
#4 Senior Sleeping Tips – Relax before bed.
Try to spend at least 30 minutes before bed relaxing. Take a warm shower or bath, read a light novel, drink some non-caffeinated tea, write in a journal, or do some simple stretches. If television relaxes you go ahead and indulge, but avoid checking email or social media, both of which can cause more stress. If you have trouble falling asleep, reading in bed is a good way to get yourself ready to drift off. Just read until you start to feel drowsy.
#5 Senior Sleeping Tips – Make your environment comfortable.
Keeping your bedroom on the cool side may help you sleep better, so crack a window if you can. Use a fan or white noise machine if background noise is a problem. Keep a book on your nightstand so you will have something to do if you can’t sleep. If you lie awake thinking of things you need to do, keep a pad of paper beside your bed to jot down notes. A clearer mind leads to a more relaxed body.