Everybody appreciates the opportunity of a better sleep. But how to really achieve an effective sleep in your later years? Time to take a deep dive.
Sleep is usually categorised as rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep associated with dreaming, “quiet sleep” or non-REM sleep, and deep sleep. It has been established, however, that as people age, they encounter more problems getting a decent sleep, often brought about by existing ailments.
- Insomnia. Insomnia is a major factor affecting Australian sleep patterns. The Sleep Health Foundation’s 2019 Insomnia Report found that 14.8 percent of respondents have symptoms that are diagnosed as clinical insomnia.
- Sleep apnoea. Snoring is already a health risk aside from being a major irritant to people nearby. It is often connected to issues such as obesity, hypertension, and acid reflux, even more when related to your sleeping form.
- Arthritis and other musculoskeletal disorders. Pain from joint-related ailments such as arthritis can strike anytime, even while sleeping. NSW Health cited studies stating that arthritis sufferers at least 50 years old lost around 20 hours’ overall sleep time a month from joint pain waking them up in the middle of the night.
- Dementia / Alzheimer’s disease. Both these diseases are infamous for disrupting sleep patterns, affecting both the patient and carer.
Consultations with your GP or a sleep health specialist will reveal some handy tips to properly get you ready for bed.
Start by actively engaging in more physical activities during the day to properly manage your energy, but do not take heavy meals or caffeine late in the day. At night, consider drinking tea or taking a bath to further cool down your body. Do not undertake any activity within 30 minutes before your projected doze off time, and set aside all gadgets away from your bed.
If your partner is going to bed with you, some people say cuddling adds to the comfort.
Potential better sleep support
There are a number of assets that can be acquired to aid in your dozing efforts.
- Adjustable bed. Some medical practitioners may recommend buying an adjustable bed for your personal use. They have controls which can set up the bed’s rear section to rise up as a backrest to aid in arresting acid reflux or sleep apnoea, while the forward section slightly crooks upward to help the legs’ circulation.
- Bed rail and tray. Upgrading your existing bed with a side rail and tray increases its protection and versatility value for seniors. A pair of side rails can protect a person from falling off the bed; these can be retracted when necessary. A bed table or tray can be positioned close by for your immediate needs.
- Mattress. A quality mattress works well in improving your sleep posture. Advances in foam technology have enabled the development of memory foam, which reshapes according to the contours of your body. Air bed mattresses help relieve pressure in specific points of the body. Toppers can also add comfort to the bed; certain brands even offer water-based climate-control systems that enable the topper’s temperature to go down and benefit the body’s core body temperature for a quality sleep.
- Pillows. For seniors, ordinary cotton pillows may not be enough, as they gradually shrink from years of use, adding more strain to the spine. Cervical pillows are contoured to the head’s shape, allowing the spine to remain straight. Combine them with organic pillow cases for improved comfort.
- Night light. Night lights enable you to have added guidance in the room even when the main lights are turned off. These will have motion sensors to trigger an activation once it detects your movement, reducing the common tendency to probe in the dark for a lamp button.
- Sleep plugs. Shaped like hearing aids, sleep plugs are worn before going to bed to mask out ambient sounds that often prompt sudden wakeups. Some sleep buds are even engineered like common audio headphones/headsets, offering calming music to gradually induce sleep.
Being able to get a better sleep will lead to some interesting benefits
Sleeping at least seven hours a night may contribute to weight loss, as the body’s metabolism forces burning more calories. You may also stand a lower risk of developing Type II diabetes as the body generates more insulin. On the social front, coming out of a long sleep improves cognitive functions and helps control emotions when dealing with other people. In light of the current COVID-19 situation, some preliminary studies claim that sleeping well before and after vaccination enhances the vaccine’s potency.
The ASAG Reverse Mortgage service can work towards providing sleeping solutions by allowing you to access funds using your property equity. From there, you can use the money to invest in the proper equipment or medicines that may improve the quality of sleep.
Given that people spend a third of their lives sleeping, it’s important to get some shut-eye every now and then, and have the proper assets to make it happen. Your body will thank you for it.
The ASAG lines are open on 1300 002 724 and at email@example.com, so go on and call us or send your enquiries about our equity release solutions.
You may also get started by using our tool below to assess your available equity.