Not only is sleep important to your parents, but it’s also important to you. If you’re working so hard to keep up with your parents’ care, your children and spouse’s needs, and your job, it’s easy to sacrifice sleep to find time for everything. That’s also a big mistake.
Too little sleep is linked to many issues. It increases your risk of anxiety and panic. It can affect your body and increase the risk of chronic health conditions like diabetes. Sleep is essential and eight hours a night is ideal.
To be your best and have the energy for everyone in your life, you need to first focus on your needs. How do you make sure you get enough sleep?
Try to Get Meals Hours Before Bed
Going to sleep with a full stomach isn’t ideal. It increases the risk of acid reflux and heartburn when you lie down to sleep. The digestion process may also keep you up.
Digestion takes several hours. When possible, eat hours before bed. If you have to eat close to your bedtime, aim for a smaller meal.
Create a Bedtime Routine
Come up with a bedtime routine that prepares your body for sleep. Lay down with a book and read for an hour or until you’re tired. Put on white noise, such as a fan, that drowns out traffic noise from outside. Spray your pillows or bedding with a relaxing scent. Lavender and chamomile are good scents to try.
Calculate what time you need to go to sleep and go to your bedroom before that. You want to be relaxed and ready to sleep at that hour. If you have to get up at 5 a.m. to get ready for work, 9 p.m. is when you’d want to fall asleep to get the full eight hours.
Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol
If you’re going to unwind with a beer or glass of wine, do so a few hours before bed. If you have a drink right before bed, it may interrupt your sleep. The same is true of caffeine. If you need a cup of tea or coffee before bed, choose a decaf blend or herbal tea.
Don’t Take On Too Much
Most importantly, don’t take on too much. If you’re working an eight-hour day, do you have time for more? If you’re stopping at your parents on your way home from work to get their dinner and clean the house, do you have time to cook your family’s meal and tidy up your home, too?
Hire caregivers to help your parents with housekeeping, laundry, meal preparation, and other daily activities they can’t do independently. Caregivers keep them company and can drive them to stores and area businesses. Talk to a specialist in home care to schedule caregivers.