Many people have sleep disturbance, where they either have difficulty falling asleep, struggle to stay asleep, or sleep too much. It happens in adults of all ages, but especially elders. There are many suggestions about how to improve one’s sleep, but sometimes people feel at a loss because maybe they have tried everything. It is important to first explore why the sleep disturbance may be happening; is it diet, lack of exercise, stress, no regular bedtime routine, a medical problem, or too much stimulation before bed? Once you figure out what could be contributing to the sleep disturbance, it is important to try one coping skill at a time. If an individual tries multiple things at once, they won’t know what was actually helpful.
- Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.
- Try to do relaxing things an hour before going to bed.
- Have a routine that you follow before you go to bed every night. For example, use the restroom, wash your face, and brush your teeth.
- Try not to drink fluids two to three hours before bed.
- Exercise most days, which will help your body feel fatigued in the evening.
If those coping skills don’t work speak with your doctor or a counselor for other ways of coping. Sleep is very important, so I hope you can find yourself having a good night sleep tonight!