This is Why You Sleep Much Less As You Age from This is Why You Sleep Much Less As You Age
This is Why You Sleep Much Less As You Age
Sleep is essential for your skin; lack of sleep affects the moisture levels, worsens existing skin conditions, causes dark circles under your eyes, makes you look tired, and speeds up the aging process.
“Our sleep needs change as we age,” Claire O'Meara, Holistic Health and Nutrition Coach, says. “We tend to sleep less deeply and wake up more often needing the toilet in the night.”
Altering sleep patterns
“As we get older it often takes us longer to drop off to sleep,” O’Meara says. “This can be due to our sleep patterns altering (maybe a nap in the day) which can often lead to further sleep problems and issues at night.”
Circadian rhythm alters
“Our circadian rhythm that coordinates our body clock, including sleep, alter,” O’Meara says. “So as we age we often find we become sleepier early evening and want to wake much earlier in the morning.”
“Hormones can play a big disruption to our sleep,” O’Meara says. “Think menopause, hot flushes, and hormone changes, which all lead to us getting less sleep and a restless night.”
“Our pineal gland, which is responsible for the production of melatonin (the sleep hormone) typically calcifies over time. This means we produce less melatonin,” Elina Winnel, Master Sleep Coach, says. “One key contributor to this calcification process is the fluoride in our water. Investing in a good water filter is one of the best things you can do to keep a healthy pineal gland.” There are also many other ways to decalcifying your pineal gland, including meditation, she adds.
“As people age, their nighttime stress hormone levels are higher than younger people's,” Winnel says. “It is important to consciously minimize how we create stress, so that our baseline stress levels don't rise as we age. Stress hormones prevent us from sleeping easily and deeply.”
“As people age, their brainwave flexibility typically declines. In other words, their ability to reach the slow brainwave state of delta required for deep rejuvenating sleep can reduce,” Winnel says. “This means we have a lighter sleep, which is less healing to the physical body than a deep sleep.” However, the good news is that it is possible to train a person to regain their brainwave flexibility, she adds.
“As people age they typically become more sedentary,” Winnel says. “This has a huge impact on sleep. We need to move in order to sleep well.”
Restless legs syndrome
Restless legs syndrome is a neurological movement disorder which causes tingling and pulling feelings in the legs; it causes difficulty sleeping. According to the National Sleep Foundation, “its prevalence increases with age and about 10% of people in North America and Europe are reported to experience RLS symptoms.”