Changing sleep patterns
Threats of COVID, raging wildfires, racial and political unrest and division, have all played havoc to our sleep. The ‘Journal of Sleep Medicine’ reports that 40% of people in 13 countries have recorded sleep problems since the pandemic began.
Waking up in the night is normal, but stress can make going back to sleep difficult, if at all. As people age, they wake more often, beginning at age 60. Most seniors sleep for shorter periods and get less deep sleep than their younger counterparts. There are some easy steps that can be taken to ease the sleeplessness issue.
#1 – Turn off all screens (computers, TV, phones) 30 minutes before bedtime
#2 – Set the thermostat between 60 & 67 degrees
#3 – Test your pillow; The National Sleep Foundation recommends replacing your pillow every 1-2 years
#4 – Get one hour of sunshine every day, it removes morning grogginess and resets your internal clock to turn melatonin on in the evening
#5 – Skip salty snacks before bedtime, makes for fewer bathroom trips during the night
#6 – Tackle all issues and problems before dinner (arguing with spouse, making tough decisions, etc.)
#7 – Avoid watching intense thriller movies before bedtime. Bedtime heart rate should be 60 -100 BPM, some of these movies can double your heart rate, disturbing sleep