If your elderly family member isn’t sleeping well on a regular basis, you might want to help her to figure out what’s keeping her from snoozing. The following are some starting points for getting to the bottom of the issue.
She Doesn’t Have a Sleep Schedule
A sleep schedule is a crucial part of getting the right amount and quality of sleep. This doesn’t have to be a “to the minute” sleep schedule, either. What you’re really looking for is a consistent range of times for waking up and for getting to bed. Having a routine for winding down before sleep is also really helpful. If your elderly family member doesn’t already have these things, they’re easy enough for her to start establishing.
She’s Visiting the Bathroom a Lot in the Middle of the Night
Nighttime bathroom visits are something that can seriously hinder your senior’s ability to sleep through the night. There might be some causes for this that are within your senior’s control, like avoiding beverages an hour or so before going to bed. If there aren’t obvious causes, you may need to talk with your senior’s doctor about what could be going on.
Health Issues Are Interfering with Sleep
If your elderly family member has discomfort or other symptoms due to existing health issues, that could be enough to interfere with sleep, too. Some health conditions have “flares” that can cause them to be more annoying or difficult for a while, and that can interfere with all aspects of your senior’s life, including her ability to get solid sleep. This may also be a conversation to have with her doctor.
Medication Side Effects Are a Problem
The other side of the medical equation is possible medication side effects. Your elderly family member’s medications help with specific health issues, but they can also create additional difficulties of their own. It’s worth taking the time to talk to your senior’s doctor about her medications a couple of times a year, but especially if you’re noticing changes in her sleep patterns and in other areas of her life.
There could be any number of other things interfering with your senior’s ability to get the sleep that she needs. It’s possible that she also needs some extra help and isn’t sure how to ask. Bringing in home care services providers can help her to manage daily tasks easier, which can lead to better sleep.