4 Adjustments For Better Sleep

February 6, 2017

There are many ways to sleep better at night, especially as a senior. You’ve probably heard not to nap for too long during the day or to avoid eating a full meal shortly before bedtime. Here are some lesser-known tips that you can try if you’re having trouble sleeping:

1. Try a New Mattress

It’s pretty standard for people to own a mattress for ten years or more. While there is no official expiration date for these important cushions, swapping them out is good if it’s been a few years and you can’t get comfortable on your current mattress. Many seniors have had their current mattress for a long time. Consider purchasing a new one when you move to a senior living community. Have the mattress delivered right to your new place.

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2. Reconsider Your Pillow

What position do you usually sleep in? Do you lie on your side or stomach? Maybe you’re more of a back sleeper. These positions matter when choosing a new pillow. Side sleepers need thicker pillows to place their heads in a comfortable position that aligns the spine. Those who rest on their stomachs can benefit from a thinner pillow as this won’t extend the neck and head too far above the back and legs. Make sure your pillow is the right size for your bed and that you’re not using too many that you’re uncomfortable. Sleeping with a pillow between your knees can also be beneficial if you lie on your side. This will prevent sensitive joints from knocking against one another and may reduce back and hip pain by creating better posture.

“Turn down the temperature in your bedroom for better rest.”

3. Change the Temperature

Do you wake up in the night feeling overwhelmingly hot, only to throw off the covers and then get cold and bundle up again? The temperature in your bedroom is a significant factor in your ability to sleep through the night. Most people prefer a colder setting at night than during the day because this allows them to cozy up under a comforter without getting too hot. Adjust your thermostat from five to seven degrees cooler at night than during the day.

4. Listen to White Noise

Sound is another key factor in sleep. Even if you’re snoozing peacefully, you may hear something that distracts your brain and can wake you up. Or, perhaps, you have trouble falling asleep because you’re too busy listening to the world around you. Birds outside, the ticking of a clock, or music from down the hall can all disrupt your rest. Consider listening to white noise as you go to bed. Set a timer so the sound goes off within half an hour, and enjoy the blissful calm that ensues as you drift off to dreamland.

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