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Honored Social Butterfly

Get Enough Sleep!!

How many of us have heard our peers say they "don't need as much sleep," now that they're older? It's almost a macho thing, when people boast about only needing 3 or 4 hours of sleep a night. Well ..

 

According to many medical experts, it's imperative for us to get about 8 hrs sleep a night, because it's restorative. WebMD, Mental Health America, Business Insider.

 

Even the idea that seniors don't need as much sleep, isn't true, although we may have more trouble sleeping thru the night .. a sign of an imbalance. What can you do to sleep better (from FamilyDoctor😞

 

What can I do to sleep better?

  • Go to bed and get up at the same time every day, even on the weekends.
  • Do not take naps longer than about 20 minutes.
  • Don't read, snack or watch TV in bed. Use your bedroom for sleep and other rooms for other activities.
  • Avoid caffeine about 8 hours before bedtime.
  • Avoid nicotine and alcohol in the evening. Alcohol might help you fall asleep initially, but it will probably make you wake up in the middle of the night.
  • Don't lie in bed for a long time trying to go to sleep. After 30 minutes of trying to sleep, get up and do something quiet for a while in a different room, such as reading or listening to quiet music. Then try again to fall asleep in bed.
  • Ask your doctor if any of your medicines could be keeping you awake at night. Medicines that can disrupt sleep include antidepressants, beta-blockers and cardiovascular drugs.
  • Ask your doctor for help if pain or other health problems keep you awake.
  • Try to exercise a little every day. Exercise helps many older adults sleep better.

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Periodic Contributor

I began sleeping much better after allowing my little dog to sleep with me.  I used to worry so much I had trouble falling asleep.  Now, though, my little dog calms me, and I sleep soundly every night.

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Periodic Contributor

Right on!  Our dogs have always slept in the same big bed with my husband and me  (although the dogs don't stay in the bed all night-they sleep, then they patrol through the house, then they return to bed).  My husband died last month and it has been a great comfort to me to have my dog (a West Highland White Terrier) sleep on my late husband's pillow.  Sometimes during the night she migrates to my pillow for awhile, which always makes me happy if I awaken and find her there. Even if she spends some time on the floor near my bed, her being in the same room with me makes me happy.  Every night, she comes up the stairs with me--it's her invariable nightly ritual.  

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Getting enough sleep at right hours is the key to lead a healthy life. Every human being needs at least 9 hours sleep a day. Various researches have shown that people who get enough sleep can do their tasks better than those who don’t take much sleep. Lack of sleep causes many issues like insomnia, dizziness, anxiety, and depression.
There is no doubt about it that good sleep can improve concentration and the power of productivity. It increases your stamina and makes you active during working hours. Good sleep also improves your immune system. If you didn’t get enough sleep then there are higher possibilities that your interactions and emotions are affected by it. You may follow https://crisissurvivortips.com/wild-lettuce/ to get the solution of insomnia, dizziness, anxiety, and depression issues.

Contributor

NO! I don't!! Chronic Insomnia plagues me constantly. I have a hard time getting to sleep at night, AND a hard time staying asleep. I waken about every hour and a half (for answering weak-bladder calls), and often can't get back to sleep easily. Seem to have to have the TV on in order to fall asleep (counter-productive!). I typically get about 3 to 5 hours a night . . . . and that, broken sleep. What I wouldn't give for a good night's sleep! I will NOT take Big Pharma drugs to sleep. I do take Melatonin, occasionally in combo with some other natural plant-based supplements. And cannibis at bedtime occasionally, really helps me to get to sleep, and maybe rack up a few more, and better quality, hours sleep. But I don't want to risk dependency on ANY outside agents. Try to use dietary manipulation to regulate it. (Bedtimes are inconsistent.)

Honored Social Butterfly

@GuruBlond DH and I have had great success in changing our sleep habits by eating a banana a day and making sure we get enough water, but early in the day. We stop drinking water 3 hours before bedtime. We eat the banana with breakfast, though the point is to keep the magnesium and potassium levels up in your system, so eating it anytime is probably fine.

 

Here's more: http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20628881,00.html

 

DH also uses ear plugs and an herbal sleep aid I prepare for him using prickly lettuce.

 

Best wishes. 

 

"The key to success is to keep growing in all areas of life - mental, emotional, spiritual, as well as physical." Julius Erving
Contributor

Thank you about the suggestion for Wild Lettuce as a sleep aid. That's one I hadn't heard of. I checked Amazon, and this is available in tea bag form, loose tea, extract liquid/drops, and capsules. I will probably be ordering one of these soon and see how it works for me.

 

The hint aout a morning banana (not one of my fav fruits, but I eat 'em) is one I may start to include. 

 

Regulating my go-to-bed times is one place I could probably clean up my act, too . . . but my whole life is sooo unstructured, that is a challenge, lol.

 

I do appreciate the feedback and suggestions from y'all: I really wasn't expecting that ~ thank you!

 

Sydney

Honored Social Butterfly

@GuruBlond You are welcome. I wish you good sleep! 🙂

 

A couple of thoughts from this old herbalist. Prickly (wild) lettuce is an opiate. A mild one, but neverthless it can be addictive for some people. If you have addiction issues, this may not be the sleep aid for you. DH doesn't have addiction issues, but even so I have him alternate the prickly lettuce tincture I make him with Hyland's Calms Forte. He switches off every 4 months out of an abundance of caution. 🙂 

 

Another thing I suggest is that you be mindful of the brands available on Amazon. All brands are not created equal: some sell junk (like food manufacturers, some just don't care about quality or potency). We use NatureMade items via Amazon.

 

Best wishes!

 

 

"The key to success is to keep growing in all areas of life - mental, emotional, spiritual, as well as physical." Julius Erving
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What I am looking for is the how. Between my work day and drive (12 hours), being a wife (59 months) I am challenged to get even 7 hours of sleep during the week. I try to stay in bed as long as possible every other Sunday. How do I stay consistent?

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Newbie

If the problem one cannot sleep is because other person snores, let them try the BreatheMax Nasal Breather that one can order online at breathemaxatnight.com for $11.95. The breather can also help you breathe better especially if you have allergies. 

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Yes, my husband uses the breather.

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Social Butterfly

@t651694o Welcome to the discussion forums!  We're always happy to have new faces and voices join in the conversation.  Please feel free to respond to other topics you may be interested in!

 

 Is this device something you found by a fortunate circumstance or was it's use suggested by a medical practitioner?

 

Why do you recommend it?  Is there specific evidence you can share that suggests beneficial results from using the product?  Have there been any downsides to using it?

 

Note:  I only ask all these questions because it's against the terms of service of the discussion forum to use it for "commercial purposes or advertising."  Posts are sometimes removed if it's felt that they are in violation of policy.  Since you are new to posting here, I am assuming you are recommending it simply because you believe it works...not that you have a financial interest in it.  You can check this out by clicking on the words "AARP Terms of Service" on the dark gray bar at the bottom of any page.  There is a "bullet list" of what is permitted and what is not under "Message Board."

 

 

 

 

"Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness." ~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Social Butterfly

@t651694o  Do you use this product?

"Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness." ~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Social Butterfly

@ASTRAEA  This is an important topic to be aware of...most of us do believe that "older people need less sleep" so we think that if we wake up after 4 or 5 hours in bed that it's just par for the course...that it's part of the "aging process" which couldn't be further from the truth, according to many references...especially those related to the "science" and study of sleep.

 

Rather than go into a lengthy explanation here, I offer this very short little video which lists three ways to "know" if you are getting enough sleep.  If, after a short screening like this , one finds he/she fits the profile...a more thorough investigation is in order...starting with one's health care provider who can make the appropriate referrals &/or consultation.

 

https://www.sharecare.com/video/sharecare-experts/michael-breus/how-do-i-know-if-i-am-suffering-from...

"Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness." ~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Honored Social Butterfly

@Prosecco6247 - I kind of take issue with the Dr's last point, about "falling asleep" very quickly at night. At least some of that has to do with our cortisol levels, which vary thru the day & night. It's low when we're sleeping, and rises as we wake up for the day. In the evening it drops off. If your cortisol level drops off earlier than average, you do fall asleep earlier & more quickly .. but it may just be a sign of cortisol levels being slightly "shifted," rather than sleep deprivation.


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Social Butterfly

@ASTRAEA  Excellent point...but that's for later when the pre-screening has identified that sleep deprivation exists.  

 

The investigation into the problems may likely include such determinations to inform & provide diagnosis, interventions and treatments for the specific sleep disorder.

"Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness." ~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Honored Social Butterfly

@Prosecco6247 - My point was that the doctor in that video said that falling asleep too fast, when you go to bed, is a sign of sleep deprivation.


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"...the doctor in that video said that falling asleep too fast, when you go to bed, is a sign of sleep deprivation."

 

I'm doubting the validity of this one. If you're deprived of sleep, and tired, you'll fall asleep fast.

Trusted Contributor

I take a Vitamin C and a Vitamin B3 ( Niacin) Tablet 10 in before bed and it calms me down and I get a wave of peace all over and sleep like a baby. No anxiety. Prayer helps too.
Social Butterfly


@HealthAdviser wrote:

"...the doctor in that video said that falling asleep too fast, when you go to bed, is a sign of sleep deprivation."

 

I'm doubting the validity of this one. If you're deprived of sleep, and tired, you'll fall asleep fast.


@HealthAdviser  Not sure I understand what you mean here.  I need some further clarification.  

 

If you're "deprived of sleep," whatever the reason, that is the definition of sleep deprivation.  

 

BTW, welcome to the AARP discussion forums!

"Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness." ~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Recognized Social Butterfly

If you're "deprived of sleep," whatever the reason, that is the definition of sleep deprivation.  

 

@Prosecco6247  No one can argue that!  Woman Very HappyWoman Very Happy

Social Butterfly

 


@LaDolceVita wrote:

If you're "deprived of sleep," whatever the reason, that is the definition of sleep deprivation.  

 

@Prosecco6247  No one can argue that!  Woman Very HappyWoman Very Happy



@LaDolceVita

 

Yes...simple concept, that one!  I'm still wondering which part of the sentence was invalid!  Woman Frustrated

 

https://youtu.be/-b5aW08ivHU

"Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness." ~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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double post

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Yes, I understand your point about cortisol, however, sleep is controlled by a homeostatic process as well as by circadian "rhythms."  The homeostatic process or the body's attempt to "balance" itself when it is in a condition of "sleep deprivation" leads to a shorter sleep latency period...or the time it takes to fall asleep.  The longer the person stays awake, the stronger the homeostatic drive to sleep becomes, thus the tendency to fall asleep when one's "head hits the pillow."  An accumulated sleep deficit will lead to a person's routinely falling asleep in much less time than a normal, healthy adult who is getting sufficient sleep.

 

The brain coordinates the functions between the homeostatic processes and the circadian rhythms, which is where the hormones cortisol and melatonin come into play, as well as core temperature regulation.  As you know, the levels of these hormones and the body temperature vary throughout the 24-hour cycle...cortisol being higher during daylight hours and at it's lowest point in the middle of the night when core body temperature is also at it's lowest point and melatonin is at it's highest.  This interplay between the homeostatic process and the brain's regulation of the circadian cycle keeps us sleeping until melatonin levels fall and the cortisol levels and body temperature begin to rise...assuming all else is functioning normally.  

 

Sleep is critical because this is the time when the body rests, restores and repairs itself.

 

The doctor's observation is based on medical/sleep research...not personal opinion.  There are  internet links to support this as well as some scholarly references and abstracts.

 

Multiple factors can create changes in sleep patterns and affect circadian rhythms...not the least of which is "shift work" and ignoring the body's drive to sleep.  Sleep is an intrinsic biological "need," however, and the homeostatic pressure to sleep will become overwhelming as the sleep deficit mounts...again, pushing the body to fall asleep...sometimes even when driving or making critical decisions.

 Image result for sleep gif

 

 

 

"Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness." ~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.