If your elderly family member has COPD, you might have noticed that she’s not sleeping as well or as much as she used to. COPD and its treatments can have significant impacts on sleep quality.
COPD Medications Sometimes Affect Sleep
COPD medications make breathing easier for your senior, but they might make sleep a little more difficult to come by. Very often people with COPD take oral or inhaled corticosteroids. These medications help to open and to relax airways, enabling your senior to breathe a little more easily. But they can have a stimulant effect. Talk to your senior’s doctor about what types of side effects she should expect from her medications so that you can both prepare.
Emotional Effects of COPD Affect Sleep
COPD is a physical illness, but it carries a lot of emotional baggage with it. Stress, depression, and anxiety can all be part of what your elderly family member has to deal with as she learns more about how COPD affects her life. It’s highly probable that there are a lot of activities your senior isn’t able to engage in anymore and that has a much larger effect than you or she can imagine beforehand. Some people find that working with a therapist helps to deal with the feelings that COPD brings up.
Comfortable Sleep Positions Might Be Difficult
Your senior may find that some sleeping positions are more comfortable for her than others are now that she’s dealing with COPD. Lying in a position that is too flat, or on her back, can make breathing more difficult. But the solution that many people try, sleeping upright in a recliner, isn’t one that is usually comfortable enough for deep sleep. Using a combination of bed wedges and cushions can help to prop your senior into a comfortable position that still allows her to breathe.
There May Be Other Situations at Play, Too
COPD takes a lot out of your senior, but so do other health conditions she might be dealing with on a daily basis. High blood pressure, arthritis, and other conditions all require different solutions from your senior. If COPD is causing sleep disturbances, that means she may not be fully recovered to face the rest of her health, too. Having senior care providers available can be incredibly helpful for her in terms of conserving energy that she badly needs to spend elsewhere.
Sleep problems impact everything from how your senior is feeling to her mood, so talk with her doctor about what else you can do.
Are you or a loved-one considering hiring a Caregiver in Arlington, VA? Please call the caring staff at Medical Professionals On Call today. Contact: 703-273-8818