Elder Care in Riverside CT
Sleep disorders are common in the elderly population. Several factors contribute to this including health problems, medications, and the myriad of changes aging brings such as diminishing social circles, a changing lifestyle, and physical decline. One study showed 50 percent of patients with depression reported sleep impairment. In addition to depression, anxiety and alcohol use are commonly associated with insomnia.
The effects of sleep deprivation are intensified with seniors. It changes their quality of life in profound ways such as daytime sleepiness and physical and psychological problems. Cognitive decline is often noted. An increase in confusion and disorientation is prevalent.
Once you have ascertained that there is no physical ailment causing the sleep disorder, consider making some changes in their bedtime habits before trying medication. Non-medication treatments include behavioral modification and relaxation techniques. Yoga and Tai chi have proven helpful in quieting an over-active mind.
Start by assessing their sleep schedule. Make sure they are getting up in the morning and going to bed at night at the same time. Set an alarm if needed. Eliminate naps, if possible. Avoid alcohol, caffeine and nicotine before bedtime. Make sure they are getting their 30 minutes of daily exercise, but not before bed. Create a bedtime ritual that may include a warm bath with relaxing, scented bath salts. Cuddle up in warm pajamas with a book or audio tape. Turn off the television.
Companionship can help quiet an active mind. Schedule in a few evenings a week when your parent is sharing dinner with a relative, friend, neighbor, or elder care provider. Then find out how they slept that evening. If you find social engagement makes a difference, a piece to the sleepless puzzle will be solved.
If you find friends and family too busy to schedule weekly shared meals, consider obtaining the services of an elder care provider. These professionals can go grocery shopping, prepare healthy meals, and then share them with your parent, providing the camaraderie so important to the elderly. They can go on daily walks, making sure your parent is fitting in their daily exercise routine. They can assist with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, and light housekeeping. They can accompany your parent on social outings and events, taking weekly trips to the local museum, park, senior luncheon or community center.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elder care in Riverside, CT or the surrounding areas, please contact SYNERGY HomeCare of Stamford, CT at 203-661-6969.