No matter your age, getting the right amount of sleep is essential. Sleep gives us all the time we need to rest our bodies and minds after a long, hard day. Quality sleep is important when you want to stay healthy and happy, especially for the elderly. Adults over the age of 65 should be getting seven to eight hours of sleep per night, according to the National Sleep Foundation, to stay physically and mentally well. Let’s take a look at some of the many wonderful sleep benefits for senior citizens.
Sleep boosts the mood
When an individual gets enough sleep at night, their mental health improves. Lack of sleep can lead to or worsen mental health problems like anxiety and depression. Getting the recommended amount of sleep is very important to maintain a good mood overall. Individuals, especially seniors, function much better when they have had a good night’s sleep the night before.
Sleep lowers the risk of diseases
The less a person sleeps, the more they increase their risk of many serious health issues. These include diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. Lack of sleep will also put unnecessary stress on the body which can then lead to a weakened immune system. When the immune system becomes weaker, the body is more likely to pick up various illnesses and diseases. Also, the human body undergoes various restorative functions while it is asleep, such as tissue repair and muscle growth. The body needs time to get this done!
Sleep supports the metabolism and weight goals
The metabolism of the human body needs enough sleep to move at a healthy rate. Ghrelin, the hormone that is in charge of stimulating the appetite, is regulated during sleep. When a person isn’t getting enough sleep, their metabolism begins to slow down. This leads to weight gain.
Sleep improves the memory and concentration skills
Getting a good night’s sleep will keep the brain healthy and the memory sharp. Lack of sleep will have a large impact on both short-term memory and attention span and will weaken the ability to make good decisions. Long-term memory can also be affected by lack of sleep. Over a long period of time, too little sleep may also contribute to memory loss and will increase the risk of an individual developing dementia.