Insomnia can be incredibly frustrating, especially if your senior has never had problems sleeping before. Once you recognize that insomnia is what she’s dealing with, you can start to formulate a plan to kick it to the curb.
Problems at Night Are Common
The most common symptoms of insomnia tend to show up at night. It might take a long time for your elderly family member to get to sleep or she might not be able to stay asleep. Waking up really early can also be a sign of insomnia. Talk to your elderly family member about how she’s feeling when she’s trying to get to sleep at night. She might describe a scenario that helps you understand what her sleep patterns are doing.
Daytime Problems Can Also Be an Issue
While you might only focus on nighttime problems when it comes to sorting out insomnia, don’t forget about what happens during the day. Your elderly family member might be way more tired than usual during the day, for example, or she might be more irritable than she’s been in the past. Lack of sleep can make it difficult for your senior to concentrate and she might have memory troubles, too.
Keep a Sleep Diary
When you and your senior first start noticing that she’s having trouble sleeping, start keeping a sleep diary right away. What you’re tracking first of all involves when your loved one tries to go to sleep, how long it took her to get to sleep, and how long and well she slept. You may also want to track things like what she eats and drinks and when she ingests those items. All of this gives you data that you can take to your senior’s doctor.
Talk to Her Doctor
Take all of the information that you’ve collected to your senior’s doctor. He can put all of the information together and look at other details such as your elderly family member’s overall health and the medications that she’s taking. It’s possible that a slight adjustment to one or more small issues can completely correct whatever insomnia issues your aging adult is facing. It’s entirely possible that the insomnia is a temporary issue that you and your elderly family member can resolve.
Insomnia is something that you and your elderly family member can usually do something about. Work with her medical team to find as many solutions as possible and rely on other family members and senior care providers to help her stick to the plan.