Sleep Problems

“My husband used to get up often at night and was very confused. I finally got him to rest in his recliner in front of the TV and he calmed down and fell asleep. He seems to feel more secure there.”

• Create an atmosphere that encourages sleep. Try a warm bath, soothing music, warm milk, comfortable blankets and pillows, low lighting.

• Be sure the person gets exercise during the day, especially if fresh air is involved, as weather permits. Try to limit daytime naps.

• Limit caffeine intake during the day – switch to decaffeinated coffee, tea or soda. Be sure to take the person to the bathroom just before bed.

• If they become restless at night, reassure and coax them back to bed when possible. If restlessness continues, you might try resting them in a comfortable chair with the radio or TV on softly. Some people with AD find a recliner more secure for sleep then a bed.

• Place a nightlight in the hall and bathroom to provide the person with visual cues to help guide them to the bathroom and back.

• Keep the bedtime routine and morning wake-up time part of the person’s regular schedule.

• Use medications with caution. Consult with your physician for suggestions on sleep-aids. Some over-the-counter remedies may make the person drowsy during the daytime and disrupt normal sleep/wake patterns.

by: Joseph and Kathleen Bryan Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (ADRC)
Duke University Medical Center

Distributed by:
Alzheimer’s Arkansas Programs and Services
201 Markham Center Drive, Little Rock AR 72205
Phone: 501-224-0021 or 800-689-6090
Fax: 501-227-6303

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