Can’t Sleep? Here are some tips on helping the elderly with insomnia.
The declining loved one is often tormented with sleep disorders. They lie awake in the middle of the night, restless and uncomfortable, or even roam the house when their caregivers think they are sleeping. In the daytime, they doze fitfully, sometimes half-awake and half-asleep, never entering a real state of restfulness.
Sometimes, they fall into a problematic pattern of sleeping more during the day than at night. This causes additional stress for you as the caregiver. You may worry they will fall or hurt themselves if they get up in the middle of the night. What can you do to ward off the creeping in of insomnia? Well here are some tips on helping the elderly with insomnia.
First, try to encourage your loved one to be engaged in activities throughout the day, whether it is receiving visitors, doing puzzles, reading, listening to music, or even coloring in an adult coloring book.
If they are able, try and get them outside each day, even if it is only for a few minutes on the patio. Encourage them to let you walk them a block or so, in their wheelchair, or walk themselves with your supervision and assistance.
By going outside during the daylight hours for at least 20 minutes, you help them get their necessary Vitamin D intake and realize the contrast between night and daytime.
However, be cautious when taking them outside. Remember that many ill and/or older adults are especially sensitive to sunlight. This can be from the medications they are prescribed and due to their age. If you have other questions about how to help seniors with insomnia and other elderly care issues be sure to check out my book.