Sleep is a critical function of the body for people of all ages. Being well-rested helps you face each day with reduced irritation, more energy and a better mood. Sleep can also play a role in overall physical health, as it helps the body recharge and recover each day.
According to the National Institute on Aging, older adults require on average 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night to get the most benefits. But getting great Zs can be difficult for people of any age, and the changes in our bodies as we get older don't help. Here are some tips for getting a great night's sleep in your Terre Haute assisted living apartment.
Years of the daily grind might have tricked you into thinking everyone lives a 9 to 5 naturally, but that's not true. Each person has different natural sleeping and waking rhythms, and those can change as you age. Experiment to find the times you sleep most soundly and make the most of them. The benefit of living in an assisted living community is that you often have flexible access to meals, entertainment and common areas, so that lets you set your own pace whether you're an early worm or a night owl.
Eating too much food at the close of the day or partaking in stimulating beverages in the afternoon or evening can keep you awake. Limit your sugar and caffeine intake throughout the day and try to avoid eating too much within the few hours before bed. Reducing fluid intake just before bed can also help you cut down on middle-of-the-night trips to the restroom. But make sure to speak to your doctor about what's best for you given any medical conditions or concerns.
According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, close to 90% of all adults have lost sleep because they were binge-watching television. But any engaging activity right before bed can cause you to lose track of time and derail your sleep schedule. If you like to close your day with favorite activities, such as watching television, reading a book or working on a hobby, set a time to remind yourself to stop at a certain hour.
Your brain reacts to screens — including televisions, smartphones and computers — in a way that keeps you alert and awake. Cut out screen time around a half hour before bed to let your brain calm down and move into a state that's more conducive to good sleep.
If your hot and sweaty — or cold and shaking — you're unlikely to sleep well. Invest in clothing and bed clothes that support comfort as you sleep, and set the thermostat in your assisted living apartment to ensure good rest. The National Sleep Foundation says between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit supports optimal rest for most people, but the staff at Bethesda Gardens assisted living in Terre Haute can help you find the right temperature for your personal comfort.
One way to ensure you sleep well is to be tired when it's time for bed. Healthy activity, movement and exercise throughout the day lets you accomplish that. Join in the organized activities and exercise programs at Bethesda Gardens, or just take regular strolls around the halls and grounds of the assisted living community.
Develop a routine that signals your mind and body that it's time for sleep. It can be as simple as turning all the lights off, washing your face and brushing your teeth. Other options that many people enjoy include short times of journaling, prayer or meditation.