The holiday season is always a very exciting time of year. For that reason, many young people find it hard to get to sleep at night. Waiting for Santa to arrive is always a thrilling experience! For older adults, however, getting good rest at night usually has nothing to do with holiday thrills. A combination of aches and pains and frequent bathroom visits often make getting a good night sleep impossible.
What steps can be taken to help seniors to sleep?
Avoid eating late in the evening.
It’s hard to go to bed on a full stomach, isn’t it? If you find your elderly loved one is snacking before bed, you may wish to encourage a different meal schedule. Try to make the last meal of the day a few hours before bedtime. Ideally, you should refrain from eating right before you sleep. If you’re feeling the munchies, be sure to make it a light snack instead of a large meal.
“Having a light meal or a late-night snack a few hours before bed may help you sleep better,” notes India’s Seniority, “However, a large ‘heavy-duty’ meal before bedtime can lead to hormone disruption and poor-quality sleep. High-sugar, high-carbohydrate, heavily-processed foods, all interfere with our sleep quality at night. It is essential to watch what you eat and when you eat it. Eat right – sleep right!”
Relax with a warm, soothing drink.
Who hasn’t been given a warm glass of milk before bedtime when they were kids? A warm beverage before bed helps to ease the nervous system. Its calming effects are ideal for those who have too much on their minds at night. Setting the mood for a calm, peaceful and relaxing night will enable better sleep. Try to get it all started with a warm, soothing drink.
“A glass of warm milk is a classic bedtime ritual for a reason, but it’s not the only beverage that eases the nervous system,” notes Kara Lewis on APlaceForMom.com, “Herbal teas, especially chamomile and peppermint, can relax the mind and body to prepare for sleep. Warm milk with honey acts as a natural sedative. However, to limit late-night trips to the bathroom, it’s best to introduce these remedies about one to two hours before going to bed.”
Get some exercise.
This is a tried and true piece of advice. You’ll find it on just about any list of health tips for people of just about any age. However, in this case, exercise can be utilized as a great way to expend energy that will help you rest better later in the day. As Seniority points out, no one type of exercise is a sure-shot remedy for good sleep, but any kind of movement is better than none.
“Aerobic or cardio, strength training or yoga – choose one that matches your lifestyle and physical abilities,” recommends their website, “However, it’s important to remember that though exercise is known to reduce symptoms of insomnia, it is best not to exercise too late in the day. Exercising increases alertness and hormones like epinephrine and adrenaline in the body that may interfere with your body’s natural sleeping cycle.”
Get an adjustable bed.
Electric adjustable beds make eating, writing, reading and watching television more comfortable and can improve breathing, comfort and safety while sleeping. At Advantage Home Health Solutions, we offer both adjustable beds and home hospital beds for home use. Both offer much more comfortable and safe sleeps at night. To learn more, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 403-460-5438. You may also email us by filling out the form on our Contact page!