Nightly Routine Helps Elderly Sleep

HAIFA, Israel, April 2 (UPI) — A nightly routine before going to bed is linked to a reduced rate of insomnia and improved quality of sleep in older adults, researchers in Israel say.

Lead author Anna Zisberg, an assistant professor at the University of Haifa in Israel, said bathing, dressing and eating were more strongly associated with sleep quality than other activities.

“We predicted that there would be a relationship between routine activity patterns and sleep quality, since theoretically sleep patterns and other everyday life activities are related and potentially synchronized,” Zisberg said in a statement. “However, given the widely accepted view that light is the major synchronizer of the human sleep-wake cycle, we were surprised that our findings were so robust.”

As people age, changes in the circadian system may occur, hurting sleep quality, but routine lifestyle rhythms may serve as a protective factor contributing to the maintenance of high-quality sleep, Zisberg said.

The findings are published in the journal Sleep.

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