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Identifying and Treating Senior Sleep Problems

dsquaredmedia on May 23, 2018

Sleep disorders come in various forms and for varying reasons. They affect people of all ages and from all walks of life. Sleeping issues don’t differ much from senior sleep problems. But, they may be caused by different situations. If you have an older loved one or you are a senior who is dealing with sleeping issues, we might have some helpful information for you. Take a look at the different conditions and causes of senior sleep problems.

Some Causes of Senior Sleep Problems

As we said before, sleeping troubles can be caused by many different things. These causes might include stress, loneliness, anxiety, and many more. When treating senior sleep problems, it’s important to figure out what’s causing them. Even if the individual begins to sleep better with the help of medication, he or she may continue to deal with the initial cause behind the sleeping problem. So, it’s definitely a good idea to find out about the root of the issue. Here are some ways in which sleeping problems can develop.

  • Depression
  • Stress
  • Trauma
  • Grief
  • Anxiety
  • Health problems
  • Medication
  • Poor environment
  • Immobility

Of course, there are more possible causes. The reasons will vary, depending on the person. But, these are some of the reasons you might see senior sleep problems arise. Let’s explore how these things actually impact sleeping for seniors.

The Effects of the Causes

When a person is depressed or anxious, the emotions and bodily patterns are thrown off. It can be really hard to continue leading a “normal” life. This means that, whether asleep or awake, the person can feel abnormal. At night, especially when alone, the emotions can all seem to swell and cause the person to feel anxiety and negative energy. This, in turn, can keep the person from sleeping well.

Trauma can affect people in ways similar to those of anxiety or depression. When a person has gone through a traumatic experience, he or she may begin to have trouble sleeping. Some senior sleep problems can be caused by a previous traumatic experience. For example, a major fall or an abusive situation are trauma inducing occurrences. If an older adult has gone through either of these things, he or she may have trouble sleeping at night because of the emotional imbalances caused by trauma.

Health problems, such as chronic pain, can definitely lead to senior sleep problems. It’s not uncommon for people to have trouble sleeping soundly when they’re really uncomfortable. Sometimes, people take medication for health conditions. These prescriptions could possibly cause negative side effects. And, unfortunately, sleep disruption can certainly be one of those side effects.

Exercise and regular movement can make people feel naturally tired and sleepy. But, if an older adult isn’t involved in this kind of activity, he or she may not feel tired enough to sleep at night. So, senior sleep problems can easily be caused by a lack of physical activity.

Grief and loneliness can make it hard to sleep. When people lose loved ones, they tend to feel that loneliness at times when they have time to think about it. For a lot of people, that time comes at night, during the dark and quiet hours of the evening. This, of course, can make it really hard to sleep.

Finally, it’s not easy to rest well if the environment isn’t conducive. Some senior sleep problems can come about because the home isn’t quite enough at night. They can be caused by an environment that doesn’t allow the person to get proper rest. If the neighborhood is rowdy or the radio is playing, it might not allow the individual to sleep well. Maybe, the window shades are constantly blocking the sunlight during the day. This lack of natural light can cause the body’s sleeping patterns to get knocked out of place.

Helping Seniors Feel More At Peace

Here at Florida First Senior Home Care, we know that many older adults deal with senior sleep problems. We also know that some of the causes can be treated with simple companionship and medical assistance. So, we bring families and caregivers together in order to help in these situations. If you or someone you know can use our referral service, please contact us today.