Catching those zzzz

Sleep, sleep, sleep – who doesn’t love it? And we all need it!

This recent article by Lindsay Kolowich reminds us of the science behind it.  Research indicates elders typically take longer to fall asleep and do wake more during the night — top that off with some elders in some care communities are being awakened during the night!

You’re doing what?!

When my mother was in a nursing home they would wake her up to “turn her” – like she was a turkey that needed basting.  Needless to say, we were NOT happy about that. “Let her sleep”, we begged!

Now certainly there are cases where elders in Skilled Nursing Communities need to be woken at night.  However, the wave of person centered or person directed living is focusing more on a  need to work with the elders natural rhythms, which includes sleep and wake patterns.

What helps?

What we hear is letting the elder follow their natural rhythms to sleeping and waking – of course discussing with family members their sleep history and keeping a close eye on any illness or medication induced changes. Providing a calm, quiet environment also helps. As does the use of Aromatherapy to help promote restful sleep. For example, Lavender aromatherapy can help elders fall asleep faster; having a deep and peaceful sleep.  Which, as previously indicated, has all sorts of health benefits?

Thanks for taking the time,

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