Getting Adequate Rest As A Home Health Caregiver

Health & Medical Blog

Working as a home health caregiver can be draining – both physically and emotionally. That's why it's essential to get a good night's sleep; otherwise, you may not feel rejuvenated when it's time for your next shift. But if you work shifts later in the evening or overnight, getting a restful night's sleep may be difficult for you. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to help improve the quality of your sleep.

  1. Talk to other people who work as caregivers. Caring for individuals who are chronically ill can be stressful, creating anxiety that contributes to your inability to sleep well. Studies show that not getting enough sleep can heighten anxiety and make it harder to control your stress levels. You may find talking to others who understand the responsibilities and stresses associated with care giving helpful. Joining an online or offline support group for caregivers may help too.

  2. Avoid consuming foods and beverages that may be interfering with your ability to sleep. For example, limit how much alcohol and beverages containing caffeine you drink – particularly as your shift is coming to an end or as bedtime grows near.

  3. Read the labels on any prescription and/or over-the-counter medications you take, as some may cause sleep problems as a side effect. For example, some cold and allergy medicines contain ingredients that can keep you awake. Discuss with your doctor lowering the dose or changing prescription medications that may be affecting your sleep.

  4. See your doctor if your sleep fails to improve, as lack of sleep can impact both your job performance and client safety. It may not be the stress of your job but rather a medical condition that is interfering with your ability to sleep. Sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome are two of the conditions that can keep you from getting restful sleep. Anxiety, depression, and a wide range of other physical and emotional factors can impact your ability to sleep as well.

Working the Night Shift

Studies indicate that working the overnight shift not only interferes with the quality of sleep home health workers get, but it also increases their risk of developing chronic illnesses. Therefore, if you are a home health nurse or aide who works overnight shifts and needs to sleep in the day, try these additional tips for sleeping:

  1. Eat healthy foods that help facilitate better sleep. Bananas and lentils contain magnesium – a mineral that helps to regulate sleep. Cherries are a natural source of the sleep hormone melatonin. Eating citrus fruits like oranges and pineapples also help boost the body's levels of melatonin.

  2. Go to bed as soon as you get home after completing your shift to allow adequate time for sleep. If you have appointments or errands that you must do, try to get them out of the way as soon as possible after your shift ends so that you can sleep during the rest of the day.

  3. Keep the same sleep schedule, even on your days off. Sleeping during the night on some days and then during the daylight hours on other days can disrupt your sleep pattern. Try to sleep at about the same time and for the same number of hours each day so that your body doesn't get confused. Getting uninterrupted sleep also is important since a broken sleep pattern can make it hard to catch up on your sleep.

Contact a business, such as Argus Home Health Care, for more information.   


25 July 2016

Natural Ways to Lower Blood Pressure

Over a year ago, I was formerly diagnosed with high blood pressure. However, due to frequent headaches and dizziness, I had already suspected that I suffered from this serious medical problem. Immediately, I was placed on medication. I also began to research natural ways that I can lower my blood pressure. I now carefully scan food labels for sodium content. I also try not to add extra salt to my recipes when I’m cooking at home. In addition, I strive to consume foods daily that are believed to have a positive effect on blood pressure numbers. On this blog, you will learn about various natural ways to lower your blood pressure.