Are you suffering from “I sleep 8 hours a night but I’m still tired”? If so, here are four better sleep tips to convert your staggering out of bed to springing out of bed!
It’s common for sleep patterns to change as you age. According to the Sleep Foundation, waking up frequently throughout the night or battling insomnia is something 40 to 70 percent of older adults experience.
Not only does this cause you to have low energy during the day, but it also can contribute to higher levels of stress, weaker memory, reaction time, and even depression.
However, these problems can often be corrected, so don’t just accept sleepless nights as an unpleasant fact.
Here you'll find some more ideas that could help you get a better night’s rest.
Have the Right Mattress
The first of the better sleep tips is make sure you have a mattress that is right for you. If you spend much of the night twisting and shifting because you’re unable to get comfortable or wake up with odd aches and pains, you need a new mattress.
Particularly for seniors who suffer from chronic pain, a surface that conforms to your body can help align your spine which is key to getting a night of restorative sleep and eliminating the discomfort.
There are several other factors to consider when choosing a mattress, such as:
- Edge support
- Temperature neutrality
Be Conscious of What and When You Eat
Today notes that how you prepare your body for sleep through what you eat and drink also plays a part in how well you sleep. Don’t drink too much caffeine during the day and try not to have any past 3 p.m. or so. Avoid drinking alcohol close to bedtime; while a glass of wine or beer can make you drowsy, it can also disrupt your sleep later in the night. Also, try not to eat spicy foods before bed because they tend to be harder to digest.
Eating a small, healthy snack can keep your stomach from growling without keeping you awake. Furthermore, it helps to watch your sugar intake and stay well-hydrated throughout the day.
A regular exercise routine can contribute to better sleep as well because it lowers the risk of some illnesses and injuries that can make sleeping more difficult. Typically, 150 minutes per week can make a difference in a senior’s quality of sleep. Aerobic activities like swimming and brisk walking can improve your cardiovascular health and reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes.
Balance and resistance activities, such as tai chi, yoga, and weightlifting can reduce the risk of falls and injuries.
The key to effective exercise is making it a long-term and regular commitment. It takes motivation to keep going, which is why many people wear fitness trackers and smartphones with fitness apps that track your progress and help set goals. The majority of these devices have pre-loaded functions that monitor things like heart rate and blood pressure, which helps you understand how your body is reacting to your workouts.
Be sure you have a comfortable and durable watch band to help secure your device from drops or bumps during the rigor of your routine.
Do Things That You Love
Part of your sleep improvement strategy could include spending time doing what you enjoy. This may include reading a good book, watching an engaging mystery movie, or engaging in outdoor recreation like fishing.
If you’re a lifelong learner and enjoy the thrill of learning something new, maybe there’s a career you’ve always wanted to pursue or a language you wanted to speak.
In that case, you can get an education in your chosen field from the comfort of home by taking online classes in pursuit of a degree. And there’s a lot to choose from; the University of Phoenix, for example, offers 26 master’s degree programs.
Know When to Talk to a Doctor
Finally, it’s important to know when you should see a doctor. If you frequently have trouble falling or staying asleep, have low energy even after seven to eight hours of sleep, or find it hard to function in everyday life, you should see a doctor.
Also, it wouldn’t hurt to keep a sleep diary as hard evidence of your sleep patterns so you can accurately describe them to your doctor.
Furthermore, it’s a good idea to get a senior-friendly tablet for communicating with long-distance family members and friends. That way, you can keep them updated on any medical issues through video calling or email. Keep in mind that Medicare may pay for some forms of treatment, so don’t let cost prevent you from getting the help you need.
Better Sleep Tips Conclusion
Just because you’re getting older doesn’t mean you should have poor sleep. Even if your sleep patterns change, you can make some adjustments to ensure you get the rest and restoration to thrive.
- Get the best mattress for you.
- Think about what and when you eat
- Follow an exercise routine that fits your needs.
- Do things that you love
Look out for signs of sleep deprivation and consult a doctor accordingly.
The quality of your sleep affects the quality of your life, so don’t wait to act.
Article by James Hall