Many people begin to notice changes in their sleep patterns as they age. They tend to experience a decrease in sleep quality, assuming it’s a normal occurrence that not much can be done about.
Although sleep patterns do change with age, there’s nothing normal about difficulty falling asleep, waking often throughout the night, or being overly tired during the day.
What Happens To Sleep As You Age?
Senior adults need just as much sleep as younger people — from seven to nine hours per night. However, research finds that 13 percent of men and 36 percent of women over the age of 65 take more than half an hour to get to sleep.
Additionally, older adults often fail to achieve a deep sleep and end up waking numerous times throughout the night. This leads to more daytime naps, which results in poorer sleep at night. It’s a vicious cycle that can dramatically affect your quality of life.
How Can Sleep Quality Be Restored?
There are ways to fight your sleep troubles as you age. Keep these tips in mind to achieve better sleep quality and stay active no matter your age.
- Avoid excessive napping during the day, as this can hinder your nighttime sleep.
- Only use your bedroom for sleeping. For example, if you haven’t fallen asleep after 15 minutes, get out of bed and try doing something else. Then go back in your room when you feel tired.
- Create a bedtime routine and stick to it. Maybe read for 30 minutes or take a warm bath each night before bed. This advice is used for parents of infants, but it’s helpful for adults too.
- Avoid caffeine late in the day. Even if it doesn’t seem to be affecting you, it’s likely affecting your sleep.
- Take in some natural light every afternoon.
- Avoid smoking cigarettes to fall asleep. Aside from the obvious health and safety risks, nicotine contains caffeine and has a negative effect on sleep.
- Exercise regularly and at the same time each day. This helps to regulate your body’s rhythms. But try to finish working out at least three hours before you hit the sack.
- Make your bedroom as dark and quiet as possible to signal to your body that it’s time to wind down.
The experts at Matrix Age Management specialize in creating a personalized plan to meet your health needs — everything from diet to physical activity to sleep is addressed during your consultation. Give us a call today to learn how to make the most of your life.