30 June, 2018
We have always heard that a normal human being needs around 8 hours of sleep a day. Getting sufficient sleep is said to be very important for a human being to remain healthy, as well as alert. Many jobs that require extreme caution, also mean that the people in such jobs, must get the required amount of sleep every day. There have been enough mishaps because of people falling asleep on their jobs, especially while driving. However, we do see that many around us hardly get any sleep and still survive.
With modern lifestyles, and extremely stressful jobs, more time spent on screens like mobile devices and laptops, sleep is mostly elusive. Also, people are easily willing to cut down on sleep for other things. But, what most people do not know is that in the long run, lack of sleep can prove extremely dangerous. It can cause diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, poor mental health, and even death. So, how much sleep is good enough or optimum to maintain a good, healthy life. Does the sleep quantity vary as you age? These are the questions that we attempt to answer through this article.
Reasons for sleeplessness
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society recommends that while infants need around 12 to 16 hours of sleep a day, adults in the 18-60 years range can make do with 7 or more hours of sleep. So, in terms of need for sleep, seniors are no different from the average adult. However, the issue is that most seniors may not get the required amount of sleep due to many issues.
Insomnia is a common thing among seniors. At times, due to anxiety, at others, some illness or aging concerns, or even at times few medications may result in sleeplessness. Also, even if you sleep for 7 to 8 hours, there is the possibility that you did not get good quality sleep. At times, you find a few seniors, who doze off in places, perhaps because of this. Issues like arthritis pain, wanting to urinate, restless leg syndrome, are all contributors to seniors getting less sleep.
Tips for getting good sleep
As we age, it is important to try and follow a set pattern in life to the extent possible. The body’s needs changes and it may not be able to take much pressure as in the younger days. Hence, it is important to eat on time and also sleepoin time. Try to follow a routine, for waking up as well as going to sleep. Follow a healthy routine, wherein you practice some yoga or meditation or do some form of physical activity every day.
Try to avoid watching too much TV before going to sleep or spending time with devices even. This can hinder the sleep. Try to get some amount of sunlight everyday as that can help maintain health and also help sleep. Discuss with your doctor if you have too much of a sleep issue. Depending on the need, the doctor may prescribe some relaxants, especially, if pain and some discomfort are the issues. Do not take too long a nap in the afternoon, as that too can hinder your night’s sleep. Try to eat your dinner slightly early and make sure to have at least an hour gap in between dinner and sleep time.
How much sleep should I get?
So, in conclusion, seniors should try to get at least 7 to 8 hours sleep every night. However, if they are comfortable with one or two hours less or more, and remain healthy and active, that should not be an issue. Only continuous sleeplessness, especially the kind that leads to other health issues, should be tracked and treated. Ensure to follow a pattern so that the body gets used to it and sleep too will fall in line.
Have You tired Pink Noise for Deep Sleep?
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