Lack of Sleep Can Make it Hard to Provide Care

Julia Little  |  August 8, 2011

Man sleepingRecent research from Stanford University shows that a lack of sleep can lead to an impaired memory. This has confirmed what researchers have believed for some time - that if you have a hard time getting some rest, there can be very real consequences to recall abilities.

The team emphasized that people who have a hard time staying asleep, such as those with sleep apnea or other disorders, are more prone to confusion and memory troubles during the day.

That means that if you're constantly getting up at night, then you're fragmenting your sleep cycle and could suffer from some of these side effects. The Alzheimer's Reading Room points out that caregivers who are involved with Alzheimer's care often don't have a choice. If a loved one is up at night, someone needs to be by his or her side.

The strain of staying awake all night can lead to both personal health problems and a decline in the quality of care you are providing. It's important to find a way to get a good night's sleep while still helping ensure that a senior is safe.

"If I hear an 'out of the usual' noise while I am sleeping, I will wake and then listen to see if my mother is up and about in the middle of the night," writes website contributor Bob DeMarco.

To better balance their sleeping habits, families may want to consider trading off their senior care duties. If an older adult is continuing to wander during the night and seriously disrupting one's lifestyle, it may be time to consider other solutions.  

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