The definition of sleep is defined as, “a condition of body and mind such as that which typically recurs for several hours every night, in which the nervous system is relatively inactive, the eyes closed, the postural muscles relaxed, and consciousness practically suspended.”
There you have it. You or your loved one may not be getting enough or it may be interrupted too many times within an eight-hour period at night. We’re talking about SLEEP. As everyone knows, an adult should be getting the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep every night and the same is true for aging adults.
So why aren’t older adults getting enough sleep? There are a number of factors to choose from including sleep apnea, insomnia, restless leg syndrome, and circadian rhythm sleep disorders. Without a sufficient amount of quality sleep every night, your body will cue into your lack of sleep and start acting out with different physical conditions including sickness, developing coronary heart disease or having a stroke, increased cancer risk, cognitive (thinking) issues, memory loss, weight gain, and an increase in your risk of developing diabetes just to name a few.
What can you or your loved one do to help increase your beauty rest?
- Limit your caffeine intake
- Try not to nap during the day
- Develop a sleep routine
- Get enough exercise throughout the day
- Power Down (put away your phone, tablet or computer at least one hour before bed)
- Invest in a sleep machine (think soothing waves or white noise)
- Try not to have too much light in the room as to not disturb your sleep cycle
- Keep the room at a comfortable temperature
If none of these suggestions work, it may be time to see your doctor. Lack of sleep is too important to lose. Don’t wait. Talk to a family member or loved one and make an appointment to see a physician today.