It is not unusual for older adults to toss and turn in their sleep every once in a while, but it is a problem when they have had trouble sleeping more times than not. Fortunately, sleep problems are a common problem among elders because of their changing sleep habits. Some of the most common shifts in their sleep include:
- Waking up frequently at night or early in the morning
- Find it difficult to fall asleep
- Only sleep for a few hours
- Get less quality sleep
There are a number of reasons your loved one may be suffering with sleep issues. Here are some of the most common reasons.
- Restless leg syndrome: Constantly having the urge to move their legs.
- Insomnia: Finding it difficult to stay asleep, fall asleep, or sleep well at night.
- REM sleep disorder: If the senior acts out while they are sleeping, they may have REM sleep disorder.
- Circadian rhythm sleep disorders: Disrupted wake-sleep cycle
- Periodic limb movement disorder: The limbs involuntarily move throughout the night while the elder sleeps
If your loved one suffers from any sleep disorders such as these ones, there are a number of reasons that could cause it. An elderly care provider can also watch for new changes to develop in the senior’s sleeping patterns.
Possible Reasons for Sleep Problems
Chronic Medical Condition
Some medical conditions have been linked to sleep disorders. If your elderly parent has one of the following conditions, it could be the reason they are not resting well at night.
- Parkinson’s disease
- Chronic pain, such as arthritis pain
- Cardiovascular disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Gastrointestinal conditions
- Neurological conditions
- Respiratory or lung conditions
- Unable to control the bladder
If your elderly parent is like most seniors, they probably have several prescriptions in order to help them manage their medical conditions. However, these medications could also be causing problems with sleep. Some drugs that could be causing sleep problems include:
- Diuretics: commonly used for high blood pressure
- H2 blockers: used for GERD Or peptic ulcers
- Levodopa: used for Parkinson’s disease
- Corticosteroids: helps relieve pain from rheumatoid arthritis
- Antihypertensive drugs: lowers high blood pressure
Some changes in sleep patterns are normal for older adults because of the changes their bodies are going through. However, if it is affecting their health, it is important to talk to their doctor about it. They may be a blue to provide a solution to the problem or prescribe an alternative medication.
For elderly care in Woolwich Township, NJ and the surrounding areas, call and talk to us at Home to Stay Healthcare Solutions (856) 321-1500.