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Get A Good Night’s Sleep

Many seniors have sleep issues that prevent them from getting deep, restorative sleep. They may fall asleep easily enough, but sleep restlessly or wake up too early. To a certain extent, that’s a function of getting older – many seniors simply sleep less than they did when they were younger. However, there are measures that seniors can take to ensure that they get the rest and sleep they need to keep their bodies and minds functioning.

Move during the Day, Sleep Well at Night

It may seem obvious, but most people sleep better when they are tired. That doesn’t mean working out to the point of exhaustion or maintaining a state of constant stress or worry. 

Instead, maintaining a reasonable routine of regular exercise can provide sufficient exertion to tire your muscles and make it easier to fall asleep. Mental stimulation – whether from a job, activity, or from a hobby like reading –  provides similar mental benefits. It’s also important to obtain sufficient exposure to natural light during the day to maintain a healthy circadian rhythm. Regular outdoor exercise can provide this exposure.

Maintain Social Ties

It may not seem obvious that maintaining social ties can help with sleep. However, feelings of anxiety and sadness resulting from isolation can aggravate depression, resulting in restless sleep. Regular interaction with friends and family can help prevent isolation and reduce the symptoms of depression.

Practice Good Sleep Hygiene

Do you fall asleep with the TV blaring in the background? Do you reach for your phone when you first wake up in the morning? Those habits may be preventing you from getting the sleep that you need. It’s essential to establish a restful routine for the period right before you go to bed. 

That includes limiting your exposure to artificial light right before bedtime, including TV, computers, and yes, your mobile phone. Keep your bedroom at a comfortable temperature for sleep – not too hot, and with sufficient circulation. It’s OK to have your phone within arm’s reach in case an emergency call comes during the night, but it’s neither necessary nor beneficial to keep the phone clutched in your palm as you drift off.

Practicing good sleep hygiene makes it easier to get the sleep you need so that you can function at your best during the day. It’s one of the most important aspects of aging well.

For more information on aging well, visit our website or come take a tour of our amazing community.

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Helping seniors stay healthy is a tenant of life at Westwind House