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Sleep & Aging

The changes that aging brings tend to come upon us unnoticed at first, like the passing of the seasons. Slowly, over time, we become aware that our eyesight is less keen or our hearing less acute. In the same way, our experience of sleep is altered. It's not that our sleep needs decline with age. In fact, research demonstrates: Our Sleep needs remain constant throughout adulthood. Most of us still require the same seven to nine hours of sleep a night we always did. However, a good night's rest may prove more elusive as we grow older. Lifestyle changes and behavioral practices may play their part. Daytime naps may make us less tired at bedtime. Poor sleep habits may have become entrenched; we may associate our bed with television or reading, not sleeping. Stress and bereavement may lead to early awakenings or interrupted sleep. And in the silence of our bedrooms, the bark of a neighbor's dog or a passing siren may trouble us more than when we were younger.