Think about your typical day. You’ve worked hard all day long for someone else, and maybe even dozens or hundreds of other people that needed you over the course of your shift. You’re starving, you want to see your family, and you’re stuck in traffic. It’s only natural for frustration to set in, but then again, you might be used to it since it happens like this every day.
You get into your home later than you want, and you’re happy to see your kids, but they want your attention, and they’re starving too. You wind up putting frozen dinners into the microwave or just ordering delivery. You know it isn’t all that healthy, but you also know that you can barely think right now, much less do any cooking. You have a quick dinner and your day still isn’t even close to being over.
Now you have to do laundry, reading with your kids, making lunches for the next day, and any work leftover from your job. Once everyone else settles down to bed, you finally get an hour or two to yourself and maybe your loved one, and you choose to enjoy yourself for a while, even if it means cutting into your sleep.
Eventually, you wind up flopping into bed, but you do this every night. It’s very late when you finally get to shut your eyes, but your mind is still moving at light speed going over the previous day. Even after that is done, your next day starts hanging over your head. You toss and turn and maybe get a few hours sleep before the alarm clock or smartphone wakes you up at another ungodly hour.
The next Groundhog Day starts and you do it all over again, exhausted at work, no time to eat well, stressed out, and it seems like it will never end.
What in the world can you ever do? Well, first of all, breathe. Just reading all of this likely bumped your blood pressure up a few points. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to get more rest and sleep at night.
Get a paper notebook and a pen or pencil and put it by your bed or nearby. Take 5 minutes before you lay down to just do some free writing. Don’t say you’re not going to have time, as this will come out of your lost insomnia time. Write down every thought going on inside your head, regardless of whether it’s from the past, present, or future, and just jot it down. That isn’t going to make your mind enter a zen-like state, but it will empty enough of the garbage in there for it to shut down faster so you can rest. You don’t have to keep the pages if you don’t want, and you probably won’t. You might even feel relief at running them through a shredder or even burning them (as long as you do that safely).
Next, change your alarm clock or smartphone ring tone so that it wakes you up slowly with something like classical music. Set it for a quarter of an hour before you need to wake up. You’ll come out of your slumber gradually and wake up a lot better.
Sprinkle healthy snacks into your daily routine too. Baby carrots and raw almonds are both nutritious foods with some taste that will help your insides settle down so you’re less anxious at night.
There are a million other steps you can take to sleep easier at night, but aiming for too many at once can stress you out and backfire. Start with these three, and see if you don’t get a little extra sleep at night.
It’s important for people of every age to get the rest that they need at night. However, a good night’s rest is particularly important for senior citizens. Because the elderly are more prone to health problems, a lack of sleep can have very serious consequences. These simple tips will help seniors to sleep better at night.
Make Sure They Have A Comfortable Place To Sleep
When people are struggling to fall asleep, it’s possible that their sleeping environment is the culprit. For example, if a room isn’t dark or quiet, it could be hard to settle down at night. If the mattress or the pillows that their resting on aren’t supportive, they might struggle to get comfortable in bed.
Everyone needs to have a comfortable place to sleep. You may have to replace the pillows or mattress in a room to help a senior get the kind of sleep that they need. Even minor changes can have a huge impact.
Do Your Best To Soothe Aches And Pains
A lot of seniors have to deal with aches and pains. Hip pain and back pain are essentially common. The average person can’t settle down to sleep when they’re in a great deal of pain.
That’s why you should try to help the elderly to relieve some of their pain. You may be able to do this by placing pillows around their body if they sleep. If their body is properly supported, they’ll feel less pain.
Give Them Tea Before They Rest
Tea can be a potent sleep aid. In fact, there are types of tea that are specifically designed to help people sleep. The right herbal tea is a terrific way to help a senior get a full night of rest.
If you’re helping a senior that enjoys tea, you should look for a caffeine-free tea that is naturally relaxing. You might want to seek out a tea that is specifically designed for sleep. Have them sit down with a cup of tea before they go to bed. You might be surprised when you see how helpful the right tea can be.
Ensure That They’re Going To Bed At The Same Time Every Night
People often associate bedtimes with children. However, going to bed at the same time every night is something that older people should try to do as well. When you always go to sleep at the same time, it will be much easier for you to fall asleep.
Some seniors don’t have a strict schedule, which means the time at which they fall asleep can vary. If you work with a senior to find a bedtime that works for them, they might find that they get more sleep each night.
If you have a senior in your life that isn’t getting all of the sleep you need, you’ll want to do everything that you can to help them. Sleep is something our body depends on. When someone enters their advanced years, it’s all the more important that they get plenty of sleep.
Violence and Sleepwalking.
While most sleepwalkers may only run the risk of doing themselves harm due to the fact that the rational parts of the brain are not in control of their actions there is the possibility that they may act out dreams that they are having during the sleepwalking episode – sometimes leading to violence.
Watch out for Drug Side Effects.
Research has shown that many drugs can encourage sleepwalking behavior. These include drugs such as beta blockers, anti depressants, anti psychotics and strangely enough prescription sleeping pills. If you have a history of sleepwalking you should inform your physician prior to him or her prescribing any medication.
Here’s one that is truly strange. Sleepwalking has been known to promote weight gain. There are several instances where people have been on diets but continued to gain weight even though their calorie intake was restricted. The reason – they were binge eating while sleepwalking. The only evidence is the condition of the kitchen in the morning – after all the higher functions of the brain are not operating correctly so that jar of mayo isn’t going to be neatly packed away.
Sleepwalking and Sexual Assault.
In 2018 a Canadian woman woke to find that she was being sexually assaulted by a long time friend. When he was asked by her what he was doing he simply stared blankly. She called the police. Two years later the man was found not guilty of sexual assault due to ‘sexsomnia’ – a variety of sleepwalking. This is not the first time that this defense has been successfully used.
It’s clear from stories like this that the human mind and what happens to it during our sleeping hours is a fascinating area of study – and one that will continue to be researched for the foreseeable future.
How much thought do you put into the pillows that you sleep on? If you don’t spend much time thinking about your pillows, you may want to change that. Picking the appropriate pillows will make it a lot easier for you to sleep well when you go to bed each night.
Choose Firmer Pillows When Possible
A lot of people are drawn to softer pillows. While it can feel great to lay your head upon a soft pillow, it isn’t necessarily the best choice for you. A soft pillow won’t be able to provide much support. This could eventually lead to neck pain.
When you have the option, you’re going to want to select pillows that are a little bit firmer. You don’t have to pick a pillow that is as hard as a rock, but you should try to find a one that is firm enough to give you the support you need.
Invest In High-Quality Pillows
If you buy cheaper pillows, those ones aren’t going to stay firm for very long. A low-quality one will quickly lose its shape, which means the pillow will no longer be able to support your head in the same way. It’s smart to spend a little bit more and pick up a higher quality pillow.
A good pillow is worth paying more for. You don’t have to spend a fortune on your pillows, but you should try to choose pillows that are well made. If you buy a pillow like this, you’ll be able to use it for a long time.
Use The Right Pillowcases
In addition to choosing the appropriate pillow, you’ll want to make sure that you house your pillow in the right pillowcase. It’s a good idea to look for a pillowcase that will protect you from allergens. Even if you don’t have many issues with allergies, you’ll want to keep your pillow free of dust and other debris.
It’s also essential that you wash your pillowcase on a regular basis. Ideally, you should be washing your bedding at least once each week. You’re breathing in the air around, and you should know that that air is clean.
Consider Using Multiple Pillows
Some people find that they’re able to sleep more comfortably when they stack two pillows against each other. Doing this can allow you to angle your pillows. It can also increase the amount of support that your pillows provide.
Experiment With Different Types Of Pillows
There are a lot of options when it comes to pillows. Try out a variety of pillows so that you can find something that works well for you. Whether you sleep on a feather pillow or a memory foam pillow, you’ll want to be happy with the pillow that you’re using.
If you want to get the best sleep that you can, you’re going to want to choose your pillows wisely. Don’t sleep on just any pillows. Look for pillows that will help you to get a full, restful night of sleep.
In the past, it was believed that people that sleepwalk were acting out either their dreams or secret desires. However, sleepwalking which is also known as somnambulism is in fact a disorder linked to arousal, which involves the brain triggering the body to rouse while the person is in a very deep sleep.
The Basics Of Sleepwalking
To put it simply, this disorder causes a person to actually rise out of their bed and then walk around while they are still asleep. Some people may creep quietly around the house, while others may run around urgently, walk out the front door or even climb out of windows. The eyes are glassy, yet open and if you were to ask them a question they may not respond at all or respond very slowly.
Sleepwalking usually occurs during the 1st third in a night, when the person enters the deepest part of slumber which is known as NREM sleep. During this stage of a sleep cycle, the brainwaves slow down, and the gray matter is inactive and quiet. Yet the body at this stage of sleep is active and is usually when a person will toss and turn more.
Children are more likely between the ages of 4 to 8 to sleepwalk and the ones that suffer from nightmares or night terrors are usually more prone to sleepwalking. Children will typically outgrow this disorder before they are 12. Sleepwalking is not only a disorder that affects the young. In fact, 4% of American adults in the U.S, suffer from the condition.
To date, there are no clear-cut reasons as to why some people sleepwalk. Yet there are a number of factors that can have an influence over its occurrence:
Similar to many other diseases and disorders, sleepwalking runs in families. For example, identical twins are more likely to sleepwalk, and are 10-times more likely to do so, if one of their first-degree relatives did.
Not enough sleep happens to be one of the more common catalysts when it comes to sleepwalking. Yet a sleep schedule that is inconsistent can also increase the risks along with alcohol and stress.
There are also a number of ailments that can make people more susceptible to sleepwalking. This includes panic attacks, irregular heartbeats, PSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), asthma, sleep apnea and reflux. Sleepwalking is also linked to Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s along with seizure disorders.
Ways To Avoid Sleepwalking
It becomes important to consult with a physician when you experience sleepwalking, because you will more than likely do it again. Many people do not need treatment when it comes to sleepwalking, yet a doctor will usually want to dismiss any other type of medical condition like seizures. If you are older, sleepwalking can be linked to neurocognitive disorders like dementia. Obtaining treatment for other types of sleep disorders like insomnia or sleep apnea can also prevent sleepwalking.
It is also important to let your physician know about any medications that you are taking and whether sleepwalking is associated with other people in your family. Doctors will not usually prescribe medications for sleepwalking, yet some might prescribe short-acting tranquilizers.
Sleepwalking or parasomnia as it is officially known has been the stuff of myths and urban legends for generations. Until recently the condition was not even recognized as one that merited serious academic study. However this has now changed and sleepwalking has been recognized as a bona fide condition – and one that requires even further study. So widespread is the condition that it is estimated that 40% of young children have sleepwalked – and up to 3% of adults continue to do so.
Here are six facts about the condition that may surprise you.
Waking a Sleepwalker.
There is a widespread belief that waking a sleepwalker may have disastrous consequences. That is simply not true. However what is even less widely known is that the task of waking a sleepwalker can be surprisingly difficult – sometimes the best approach is to gently shepherd them back to bed where in most cases they will resume their unbroken night’s rest.
You Could be a Sleepwalker.
Those who do sleepwalk very rarely remember the experience. The parts of the brain that responsible for processing information and walking are ‘awake’ – but those that are responsible for logical decision making and memory are not.