Caregiving is more than a full-time job. It can be an around-the-clock occupation that leaves little time to get a good night’s rest. However, caregivers should strive to get at least seven hours of sleep every night. Here are a few reasons getting adequate sleep is important for family caregivers.
1. Protect the Memory
Getting inadequate sleep can make it difficult for caregivers to concentrate. Remembering important details, such as your senior loved one’s medication schedule and doctor’s appointments, requires a sharp memory. When the body is asleep, the mind is still working, consolidating information and memories. If you don’t get enough sleep, your brain’s ability to retain information could be impacted, which could affect your ability to provide adequate care.
Consider hiring a professional caregiver if you need help caring for your loved one or need a break from your duties to catch up on sleep. Although it may be challenging to find reliable, highly rated senior care, you can turn to Home Care Assistance. Our respite and live-in caregivers are expertly trained to assist seniors with a wide array of important tasks, including cooking, bathing, light housekeeping, and exercise.
2. Minimize Stress & Anxiety
Stress and anxiety are common concerns for caregivers, and these issues could be exacerbated without a solid eight hours of sleep. When the brain is too tired to function properly, it’s on high alert. Even minor issues can set off the brain’s alarm bells, lead to negative anticipatory reactions, and create a self-perpetuating cycle.
When people are under too much stress, they often have difficulty going to sleep. Caregivers who feel constantly anxious should find an effective stress relief treatment, whether it’s physical exercise or meditation.
3. Keep Depression at Bay
When the mind doesn’t get enough sleep, it becomes susceptible to mood disorders, which can leave caregivers feeling despondent. Sleep is fundamentally restorative, and caregivers who don’t have healthy sleep habits may experience irritability, fatigue, or uncontrollable sadness. Depression can greatly impede a caregiver’s ability to fulfill his or her role. If you suspect you might be experiencing depression, talk to a mental health professional about appropriate treatment.
4. Prevent Associated Health Issues
Getting enough sleep isn’t only important for mental and emotional health. It also impacts physical health. There are several side effects associated with sleep deprivation, such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels. Bad sleep habits can also reduce the health benefits of good habits like exercising and eating right. If you find your physical health is decreasing, start taking better care of yourself.
Hiring a professional caregiver can allow you to take a break from your caregiving duties to focus on your health and wellbeing. Whether you need respite from your caregiving duties or your aging loved one needs live-in care, Rhode Island Home Care Assistance can meet your family’s care needs. Our dedicated caregivers are available around the clock to provide transportation to doctor’s appointments, ensure seniors take their prescribed medications, and help with a variety of tasks in and outside the home.
5. Reduce Cravings
Sleep deprivation affects the brain in a variety of ways. When the brain isn’t well rested, it derives great pleasure from unhealthy foods. The sleep-deprived brain induces cravings for unhealthy snacks such as ice cream and potato chips, leading to poor eating habits. To maintain healthy eating habits, it’s important to get an adequate amount of rest every night.
Getting a good night’s sleep while managing caregiving duties can be challenging, but family caregivers can catch up on their rest by hiring professional in-home caregivers. Though you may be researching multiple agencies that provide at-home care, Rhode Island Home Care Assistance has much to offer your family and your elderly loved one. We are leaders in the senior home care industry, offering proprietary programs like our holistic Balanced Care Method and around-the-clock assistance from reliable, experienced caregivers. Trust Home Care Assistance to help your loved one enjoy a happier and healthier life in the golden years. If your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging, call one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (401) 284-0979.