6 Main Causes of Sleep Issues in the Elderly

6 Common Causes of Senior Sleep Issues

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Poor sleep quality can impact your aging loved one’s health and negatively affect the ability to live independently. However, there are steps you can take to prevent this from happening, starting with learning what impacts sleep quality. Below are some reasons seniors don’t sleep well and what you can do to address each issue.

1. Too Much Alcohol and Caffeine

The foods and beverages seniors consume during the day impact how they rest during the night. Alcohol and caffeine are stimulants that keep the brain energized temporarily, and they can damage cells in the body. Your loved one should avoid drinking alcoholic beverages and drinks with caffeine, such as tea and coffee. If your loved one continues to consume these drinks, he or she needs to be mindful of how much caffeine or alcohol is in each beverage.

If your loved one needs help maintaining healthy habits that enhance sleep quality, consider hiring a home caregiver. When considering home care, Columbia, MD, families should make sure their senior loved ones have the resources they need to maintain their independence and remain healthy. Trusted in-home care professionals can assist seniors with daily tasks like cooking, bathing, and exercise, and they can also encourage them to focus on healthier lifestyle habits.

2. Daytime Naps

Too much napping throughout the day can affect sleep patterns. Even when your loved one is only intending to get a short break and relax, a nap could turn into a deep sleep. Limit your loved one’s naps to 45 minutes or less, and make sure he or she rests in the earlier part of the day, as opposed to the evening.

3. Exercising Before Bedtime

While physical activity is vital to an aging adult’s health, your loved one needs to avoid working out at least two hours before bedtime to allow his or her body to wind down. Overworking the muscles before bedtime could lead to restless nights. In addition to exercise, seniors should avoid doing strenuous activities before they go to sleep.

Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional care. Assisting Hands Home Care is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life.

4. Medications

The side effects of prescriptions can impact a senior’s mood and sleeping abilities, especially when taking multiple medications. If the medicines your loved one takes make it difficult to sleep throughout the night, contact his or her primary care physician to determine if alternative treatments exist. The doctor can also lower the dosage or timing of each medication.

5. Bad Mattress

Aches and pains in the muscles and joints are a regular part of the aging process, which is why seniors need to sleep on high-quality mattresses. If the bed is too soft or too firm, it could be difficult to get comfortable, causing your loved one to toss and turn during the night. Make sure to change your loved one’s mattress every few years and that the product is right for his or her posture and back.

6. Smoking

The nicotine in cigarettes and other tobacco products is a stimulant that can make it difficult for older adults to fall asleep. The more your loved one smokes, the greater the odds of having insomnia. When using cigarettes, cigars, and other nicotine products, your loved one could experience circadian rhythm changes that lead to poor sleep quality. Seniors need to stop smoking to enhance their sleep quality and overall health.

Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality in-home care. Columbia families trust Assisting Hands Home Care to help their elderly loved ones age in place safely and comfortably. Call one of our qualified team members today at 443-233-1245 to learn more about our customized care plans.