How Sleeping Affects Your Health and Why It Matters for Seniors

Even if your senior lives in a nursing home or has elder care at home, sleep is essential for their health, no matter where they end up. Poor sleep will negatively impact anyone, but it can also affect seniors. Elder care can truly help a senior stay on a routine that may help them sleep better at night, but there are true reasons why these sleeping habits become so important as one ages.


Elder Care in Chadds Ford PA: Senior Sleep

Elder Care in Chadds Ford PA: Senior Sleep


Unhealthy sleep may disrupt everyday activities and increase the risk of chronic diseases like diabetes and obesity. Poor sleep is linked to unhealthy weight increases because it affects hormones that inform your body when you are hungry and full. This reaction to poor sleep may cause seniors to eat more unhealthy foods than they usually would. Too much food can cause other problems, especially easily packaged food.

Getting adequate sleep is also vital for mental health, a strong immune system, and emotional control. People who have sleep problems may have reduced reaction times. Daytime sleepiness is linked to an increased risk of falling, injuries, and accidents.


How Much Do Older Adults Need To Sleep?

Older folks need the same amount of sleep as all adults—7 to 9 hours each night. There is a myth out there that the elderly need less sleep, but that is not true in the slightest. It is normal to take longer to fall asleep and have more nighttime awakenings as you become older. Difficulty sleeping throughout the whole night is OK if you can go back asleep, but quality and quantity are vital. The next time you talk to your mom and dad, make sure you ask how well they have been sleeping.


What Causes Poor Sleep?

There are thousands of reasons why someone may not be getting enough sleep, and it is crucial to have open communication with your loved one. If things become bad, it is also wise to encourage them to seek medical attention. Lack of sleep could be a sign of a bigger issue that you are unaware of.

Some seniors may feel ill or have diseases that leave them feeling sick, which can cause them to stay up later at night. Many seniors take multiple medications every day, and sometimes these can negatively impact sleeping habits which is another reason communication with their primary doctor is necessary. Doctors may adjust medications to help a seniors sleeping habits get back on track.

Keep in mind diet can also impact how well a senior sleep too. If they are eating too much sugar or food and drinks that contain caffeine, it may keep them up much longer than they would like.

How To Help Your Senior Sleep?

Even if you don’t live with your senior parent you can still encourage them to stick to a routine and eat healthy meals. Hiring someone like elder care to be at home with your senior can also drastically impact how well a senior sticks to their routine. If a senior has a routine even if they’re not tired their bodies will adjust and know when they should be sleeping. This can help get your senior to sleep better and longer.


If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Elder Care in Chadds Ford, PA, and the surrounding area please contact the friendly staff at Suma Home Care. (484) 206-4544

Ibrahim & Mariama Suma-Keita