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The Role of Sleep In Healthy Aging
The Role of SleepDecember 7, 2006 - Sleep is essential to well-being, quality of life and overall health, especially among the older population according to the new report The Role of Sleep In Healthy Aging, published by the International Longevity Center-USA. The organization also offers some things senior citizens can do, and should not do, to get a good nights sleep.

"The prevalence of sleep-related problems increases with age," says Dr. Harrison Bloom, coauthor of the report and senior associate with the ILC-USA. "A common misconception is that older individuals require less sleep and older people themselves believe they need less sleep than younger people."

Many clinicians are unaware of the serious conditions associated with insomnia in older adults, says the report. Older adults with sleep-related problems are more likely to be depressed, suffer attention and memory problems, experience daytime sleepiness and are at higher risk of falls than those who have good quality of sleep. If older adults suffer from insomnia, a thorough medical evaluation may be necessary. The ILC-USA also recommends the following tips for healthful sleep hygiene:


Go to bed at the same time each night, and get up and out of bed at the same time each morning
Keep your bedroom/sleeping area dark, cool, quiet, restful and comfortable
If you cannot fall asleep within 20 minutes, get out of bed and read something boring until you feel sleepy
Engage in physical activity, outdoors if possible, during the day (at least 4 hours before bedtime)
Take a hot bath 60-90 minutes before bedtime
Listen to soft or soothing music
Use visualization - picture a relaxing scene

Do not:

Drink caffeinated beverages for at least 6 hours before going to bed. This includes coffee, tea and soda
Smoke cigarettes at least 4 hours before bedtime, of course, its best not to smoke at all
Fall asleep with the television on
Exercise within 4 hours of going to bed
Read stimulating material while in bed just before turning out the lights
Take a long nap during the day (more than 30 minutes)
Go to bed too hungry or too full. If hungry, a light carbohydrate snack (e.g. crackers with milk) may help.

The report also outlines prescription and over-the-counter drug interventions including trazodone, antihistamines, benzodiazepines and melatonin-receptor agonists. The report examines the potential negative effects of polypharmacy and calls for additional research and clinical trials.

"Raising the awareness of sleep disorders among independent older persons, caregivers and clinicians who care for older persons should become a priority," concludes James Nyberg, coauthor of the report and program director of elder services in Newport County, Rhode Island.

The Role of Sleep In Healthy Aging recommends physician training, increased patient education and additional research on sleep and its effects on aging, stress and disease. The report was supported through an unrestricted educational grant from Takeda Pharmaceuticals N.A. To download The Role of Sleep in Healthy Aging please visit the ILC-USA website at To request a copy of the publication contact

The International Longevity Center-USA is a research policy organization in New York City and has sister centers in Europe, Asia, Latin America and Africa. Led by Dr. Robert N. Butler, a world renowned physician specializing in geriatrics, the Center is a non-for-profit, non-partisan organization with a staff of economists, medical and health researchers, demographers and others who study the impact of population aging on society.

The ILC-USA focuses on combating ageism, healthy aging, productive engagement and the financing of old age. The ILC-USA is an independent affiliate of Mount Sinai School of Medicine and is incorporated as a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) entity. More information on the ILC-USA can be found at
Posted on Tuesday, December 12 @ 12:36:27 EST by administrator
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This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research ,educational and hormone testing purposes.If the master hormones deficiency is detected, the secondary prevention or integrative treatment would be necessary for healthy ageing . Please consult your endocrinologist for diagnosis and conventional treatment.
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