Whether we like it or not, sleep is something that none of us can live without. Studies from National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute have shown that sleep energizes us for the next day and allows our bodies to recuperate from the day’s happenings. There will be different sleep guidelines for every stage of life with an average of twelve to fifteen hours for newborns, and seven to eight hours for adults above 65. It is normal for mature people to require fewer hours of sleep. However, changes in our sleeping patterns through the years may affect the hours we spend in bed. A plethora of reasons explain why one may sleep more with age, and it is important to understand why it happens. Here are some possible causes of excessive sleep in loved ones.
Insufficient Sleep At Night
It is no secret that our quality of sleep will change as we mature. Mature adults tend to sleep lighter and small disturbances during the night may cause them to wake up more frequently. It could even be as small as an ache or a trip to the bathroom. Their sleep gets disrupted easily and may feel the need to compensate for the lost sleep by staying in longer or taking a nap or two during the day. While this is normal and not a cause for concern, spending more hours asleep than awake is a problem that has to be looked into.
Many different health conditions can affect one’s quality and duration of sleep as well. These conditions often arise with age and can include back pain, high blood pressure, and heart conditions. Certain mental conditions can also cause poor quality sleep such as dementia, depression, and other sleep disorders. Dementia causes one to be excessively sleepy throughout the day, brain changes caused by dementia causes sleep deprivation.
It is no secret that medications would have to be taken in order to cope with an increasing number of health concerns. With that said, all prescription drugs have their own set of side effects. When more drugs are consumed together, they can interact with each other, causing these side effects to either amplify or change. Many drugs commonly taken by the elderly can cause sleepiness, such as medications for high blood pressure, anxiety, and painkillers.
Change is the only constant in life, and that includes the habits, social interactions, and limitations that we may have. This can reduce the number of things we can do on our own time, causing boredom to strike. This becomes more apparent in mature adults who are in their retirement years. With a limited number of activities to keep them excited, many mature adults turn to napping as a way to relieve their boredom. The good news is that all these problems can be solved with an active lifestyle with sufficient activities and interactions in day-to-day life.