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Old 09-10-2014, 06:07 PM   #1
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Instead of citing a website, you can do your own search for sleep and health, since that is likely the main concern, especially as retirement supposedly eases the stress that comes with being employed and subject to the requirements of the position.

The subject is wide open. Some, who have no problem dozing off in an action movie, and others who toss and turn, and never get more than an hour or so of peaceful sleep. Others, to whom dreams are so real that they affect their personality.

The most difficult part is to understand what is going on in the mind of the other person.

Sleep aids, sleep consultations. physical things like apnea, oxygen, breathing strips, snoring. nightmares, continuous long sleep or short sleep hours, temperature, psychoanalysis, and a hundred other associated sleep concerns.

So... maybe a discussion of problems... current or past... things that have helped... and

...Does irregular sleep have a negative influence on daily living, or is it just something we deal with as an annoyance, but not a major concern.

The guess is that this a "different strokes for different folks" thing.

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Old 09-10-2014, 06:23 PM   #2
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My own first reply:

Continuous sleep is becoming less common as I age. Forty years of going to sleep with the TV running, continues. Despite trying the dark room, silence, cool temperature, not eating for 2 hours before bedtime, avoiding stress, avoiding alcohol or caffeine... no matter... without my security blanket of Television, the mind swirls for hours and sleep does not happen... at all... even after 8 hours...

So yes, an oddball. Guess who couldn't sleep at the sleep clinic?

Have tried sound machines, music, and even long readings from books I don't like... nada...

With less physical activity as I age, the deep sleep, (when it happens) only lasts for 3 or 4 hours.

Sounds horrible, I know, but getting up to go on the computer, or working on a project is not an interruption, but a welcome change.

Common bedtime 8:30 PM, Wake up for the day @ 5:AM.. three hours of "wake" in the middle of this.

Naps, occasionally, the afternoon, but 15 minutes only.

It is what it is, and doesn't bother me at all, but I often wonder if this is really abnormal? In any case nothing likely to change.

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Old 09-10-2014, 06:28 PM   #3
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Old 09-10-2014, 06:30 PM   #4
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I gave up caffeine a few months ago and love how easy naps became! Also my nightime awake spells got shorter. I'm sure that dropping my tea habit has allowed me more sleep, and I hope, better health.
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Old 09-10-2014, 06:36 PM   #5
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I sleep much better now that I don't work full time. I am a light sleeper and get woken up with noises that wouldn't bother other people even though I wear ear plugs. I'm usually in bed 9-10 hours and sleep maybe 6-7 of those hours on average. The rest of the time is still relaxing rest with eyes closed.
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Old 09-10-2014, 06:46 PM   #6
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I sleep better since not w*rking. Time is pretty much relative without having to go to bed or get up at a certain time. Though I like to hit the sack before midnight as anytime after then, I tend to drag the following day.

A white noise machine I got really helps. I turn that on and then around 15 minutes I'm usually out until I hear my cats meowing. One thinks he's a rooster and starts around dawn
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Old 09-10-2014, 06:50 PM   #7
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I've never had a TV in the bedroom or other sleep aid. When working I often couldn't get enough sleep at night but was always capable of catching naps during the day on trains, planes, automobiles or just about anywhere. My family used to tease me about my ability to fall asleep anywhere, anytime.

Since retiring I never nap during the day, so I guess I'm now getting enough quality sleep at night. Usually go to bed at 11 and am up somewhere between 7 and 8. No complaints usually although I do have the odd restless night.
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Old 09-10-2014, 07:30 PM   #8
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I've had insomnia my entire life, starting at age 7-8 I'd spend the entire night reading. It seems to get worse the older I get. Best treatment for me is self hypnosis. Works better at bedtime than at 3AM.

I remember very few dreams, maybe 1 every couple of years. Been told nobody ever dies from lack of sleep. I try to remember that from 3-5 AM.
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Old 09-10-2014, 08:13 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by imoldernu View Post
others who toss and turn, and never get more than an hour or so of peaceful sleep.
A friend of mine is like this. He can barely sleep few hours per night but functions normally.

As for me, instead of counting sheep, I fantasize about same thing every night. That's my queue to fall asleep and it works like a charm. Once in a great while, I will change my fantasy to something different. It works if a fantasy is a bit boring. A fantasy that can be too exciting will keep me awake. It has been trial and error. In a way, it's like imoldernu's watching TV. Over time, TV on becomes a queue. DW is like that. As soon as she turns on TV or open a book, in 5 minutes, she falls asleep.
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Old 09-10-2014, 09:13 PM   #10
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I've found that wearing earplugs can help me sleep better. I don't tend to focus on or think about what is causing various normal sounds in the house, although I can still hear the smoke alarm. The sound of blood flow/heart beat in my ears also seems to have a positive effect on my ability to sleep.
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Old 09-10-2014, 09:30 PM   #11
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I'm fortunate in that I sleep very well. My problem is that I wake up at first light. This was not a problem when I was working because I had to get up way before first light.

I've tried keeping the room dark. That doesn't help. For a while I blamed the Canadian geese that can make quite a racket around here. But the geese don't come every morning and I still wake up.

So, if I want to sleep longer, I have to go to bed earlier.
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Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
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Old 09-10-2014, 09:45 PM   #12
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I wake easily and rarely get more than 5-6 hours of sleep a night. I wish I could get more. No tv but I do find that reading helps me fall asleep.
It seems that I suffer more tiredness now than when I was younger.
“One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it's worth watching.”
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Old 09-11-2014, 06:39 PM   #13
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I don't have any trouble sleeping almost all the time. Once in a great long while I'll wake up at 3:00 AM and can't go back but I don't worry about it because I know I'll make up for it the next night.

A few years ago I would fall asleep for an hour or two in the afternoon but that seems to have gone away. Once in a great long while now but not often.
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
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Old 09-11-2014, 06:46 PM   #14
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Loud fan, cool and dark and vitamin D, calcium and magnesium. The magnesium helps me to fall asleep. Recently was put on a beta blocker for blood pressure and it has helped with the waking up during the night as well. Most important is a 4" memory foam topper that is 4lb density. Helps tremendously with aches and pains I never knew I had.

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Old 09-12-2014, 07:38 AM   #15
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I used to be able to sleep through the proverbial freight train, but now a light sleeper. Sleep is easily and often disrupted by alcohol, noise, light, RLS, and my inability to shut off the brain...

One more year on someone else's schedule, then I won't care!
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Old 09-12-2014, 09:00 AM   #16
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My sleep patterns are similar to Imoldernu's. I get 3-4 hours of sleep at best. I've been trying Ambien but finding it doesn't increase the number of hours I sleep, so it's not effective for me. I recently tried Xanax, and I did find that helped me to stay asleep longer and have fewer hours of awake time in the middle of the night. But it's not a good long term solution because it can become habit forming. So I'm still searching for a better solution. It's a terrible problem to lie awake all night unable to fall asleep.
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Old 09-12-2014, 09:36 AM   #17
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I used to sleep very soundly in my 20's and 30's. When I got into my 50's, not so much anymore. However, since I retired in July my sleep has improved because I am doing things on my schedule and also not fretting over some office matter. My bedtime used to be 10:00 with the alarm clock at 6:00. However I often woke at 5:00 of earlier. Now I hit the hay closer to midnight and awaken quite refreshed at 7:30 or 8:00. I enjoy going to the gym around 10:00 a.m. 2 or 3 times a week and have changed my workout to Aquafit twice a week (50 minutes) and a third day of treadmill or elliptical or recumbent bike plus light weights. I walk out of doors a fourth day for about an hour.

I like to sleep in a cool, very dark and quiet room. If I drink any alcohol at all, it has to be "just one" with dinner. Anything later will disturb my sleep. I enjoy a couple of cups of regular coffee in the a.m. only. After 8:00 p.m. I try to drink water only (no solid foods) although if I am hungry I might have some fresh fruit or a glass of milk or a cup of plain yogurt.
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Old 09-12-2014, 09:43 AM   #18
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I tend to sleep very soundly unless there is some stress or worry that is gnawing at me below the conscious level. When I was working, it might have been a technical problem, or a work politics problem... That has subsided since I retired earlier this summer.

I prefer an 8 hour night. I can get buy on 6.5 or better. I am hurting if I get less.

I spent 13 months of sleep deprivation following my younger son's birth. He would sleep in 30 minute increments and was an all-night-snacker. Since I was nursing, my boobs would respond to his cries and wake me up... I was working... during this period but probably not producing very good quality of work. That was a miserable period of my life. I do not do well on extended periods of 5 hours or less of sleep/night.

I tend to fall asleep w/in 10 minutes of lights out. But I don't sleep well outside of bed... I can't sleep on planes. I'm a terrible napper.
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Old 09-12-2014, 09:43 AM   #19
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There is a ton of discussions about sleep on the Internet. However, since I am partial to Mark's Daily Apple Blog this post may be of interest:

What is Biphasic Sleep? | Mark's Daily Apple

For most of human history, nighttime meant darkness. Not the blueish whitish permaglow from storefronts, billboards, and headlights enjoyed by modern city-goers. Not the yellow-orange bath radiating down from street lamps on quiet suburban streets, so ubiquitous that you only notice them when they go out. I’m talking about real, permeating darkness. Camping darkness. Small country road with the car lights out darkness. For our ancestors as recently as a couple hundred years ago, this kind of nighttime darkness lasted up to fourteen hours (well, it does today, too, but we mask it with all that lighting and housing). Artificial lighting meant candles and firewood, and those cost (money or time) and don’t really replace daylight (anyone who’s stifled yawns around a campfire knows that) like today’s artificial lighting replaces daylight. People got to bed earlier – because, unless you’re rich enough to burn candles all night, what else are you going to do when it’s dark everywhere but, as Thomas Middleton said, “sleepe, feed, and fart?” – and their sleep was biphasic, or broken up into two four hour segments, with the first beginning about two hours after nightfall.
If you find this article useful, then a search for "Sleep" on his site will give dozens of equally good Posts:

Search Results | Mark's Daily Apple
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Old 09-12-2014, 10:09 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Ready View Post
I've been trying Ambien but finding it doesn't increase the number of hours I sleep, so it's not effective for me.
There are concerns that frequent use of Ambien is a risk factor for Alzheimer's; DH is 76 and his doc won't prescribe it anymore.

I get awakened by hot flashes; annoying but most of the time I can get back to sleep. There are times when I can't and my brain just won't shut down. Depending on the time and how well I've been sleeping in previous nights, I might get up (even if it's 4:30 AM) or I plug in my iPod and set the Mellow Music playlist on Shuffle. It's not as instantaneous as a pill but it frequently does the trick and you can resort to it at 5 AM, which you wouldn't want to do with a sleeping pill.

It's lovely to know that if I'm tired I can take a nap in the afternoon or sleep in till 7:30 the next morning.

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