With World Sleep Day coming up on the 13 March, it’s got us thinking about how to get a good night’s sleep.
A decent sleep is vital in life but even more so when you are caring for someone else. It’s very difficult to function without the right amount of sleep however with the stresses and strains that caring can have on you both mentally and physically it can be difficult to get the right balance of sleep.
If you are struggling to get to or stay asleep, here are some helpful tips:
1 – Try and stick to a routine before bedtime
Make time to wind down before bed. Have a bath, read a book or try some relaxation methods. Avoid electronic devices such as mobile phone/tablets/e-books and stop watching TV ideally at least an hour before your bed time.
2 – Make the right bedroom environment for sleep
The temperature and light in your bedroom can affect your sleep. Make sure your room isn’t too hot or too cold. Consider black out curtains if you struggle with morning light getting into your room.
3 – Relaxation
Look into relaxation methods such as practicing yoga or doing some breathing exercises. There are several apps you can download to help with relaxation; Calm and Headspace are just two of them. This Huffington Post article shares 10 of the best yoga posts for sleep.
If the person you care for’s condition affects your sleep
If the person you care for is particularly active in the night (this can happen in certain conditions such as dementia) or you have to wake at regular intervals to check on them then it might be worth considering some kind of respite options, whether it’s respite care for you or perhaps overnight care options. Talk to one of the team at Carer Support Dorset for advice on what might be available for you.
Seeking help if you are having sleep troubles
The NHS recommends keeping a sleep diary if you are struggling with insomnia. If your sleep troubles have been happening for a while then get in touch with your GP. Find out more on the NHS website.