Sleep disturbances are common in older adults. These disturbances are often secondary to medical illness and/or medication use or are due to specific problems such as sleep disordered breathing, periodic limb movements in sleep and circadian rhythm disturbances. The prevalence of sleep disordered breathing and periodic limb movement in sleep increases with age. The circadian rhythm tends to advance with age, causing older people to awaken early in the morning. Insomnia is often caused by pain associated with medical illness. Insomnia can also be caused by stimulating medications. In institutionalized elderly, sleep becomes even more disturbed and fragmented than in community-dwelling older adults. Accurate assessment and diagnosis is crucial since effective treatment strategies are available for these sleep disturbances. The effect, prevalence and treatment of each of these conditions is reviewed. (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Supported by: NIA AG02711, NIA AG08415, NHLBI HL44915, the Sam and Rose Stein Institute for Research on Aging, UCSD School of Medicine Fellowship for the Study of Alternative Therapies, the Department of Veterans Affairs VISN-22 Mental Illness Research, Education and Clinical Center (MIRECC), and the Research Service of the Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health