As I move through my 60s – somewhat bemused by my imminent ageing – I notice that my sleep patterns are changing.
If you’re like many of us, you’re a little hungry when bedtime rolls around. Although you know you shouldn’t eat a big meal just before retiring for the night, you need something in your tummy before you can fall asleep.
Whether your bedtime is closer to 8:00 pm or 2:00 am, choosing the wrong snack can keep you from getting the sleep you need.
As we grow older, we seem to require less sleep, although it doesn’t always feel that way, especially when the alarm goes off! But in fact, this is not strictly true. If we once needed eight hours sleep a night, we still need the same amount of sleep as we age.
I am lucky enough to live with a loved one – nothing to be taken for granted as we age. Additionally, we still share a bed. Problem is, as you get older, comfort during your sleep time seems increasingly vital. As a result, sharing a bed can be both a blessing and a curse.
Sleep is a mysterious process.
For hours a day, we are whisked away to a magical world, fueled by our subconscious. As a result, we have a tendency to think of sleep as being out of our control.
Do you ever find yourself nodding off while watching your favorite evening TV show? Are you frustrated by the fact that you wake up at 4:00 in the morning?
Like so many aspects of getting older, it’s easy to blame our poor sleep on our aging bodies. When we were younger, we remember, getting to sleep was a breeze. No sooner had our heads hit the pillow, then we were dreaming of… well, whatever it was that we dreamt of in those days.
We may not realize it, but, sleep problems have a major impact on our ability to function during the day.
When we are tired, your brains don’t operate efficiently. In fact, some sleep researchers even believe that many older adults are incorrectly diagnosed with dementia, when in reality, they have a sleep disorder. That’s how severe the impact of insomnia after 60 can be.
As we get older, we learn to put up with life’s little aches and pains. Even if we have avoided major injuries and chronic health conditions, we probably feel a little stiff from time to time. “It’s ok…” we think to ourselves. “That’s just a part of aging.”
Sleep is a mysterious process for many older adults. When we are babies, we sleep… well, like babies.
As younger adults, we could doze peacefully with a rock concert going on outside our window. Then, in our 50s and 60s, strange things start to happen. Our internal clock “shifts” and we may find ourselves falling asleep after dinner and waking up at 4 in the morning.