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We need your help on your experiences of sleep - Carers UK Forum

We need your help on your experiences of sleep

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
We need your help. We are developing new resources to help carers cope with the pressures of caring. We want your experiences and tips to be central as carers uk has always found that other carers, especially new carers value this kind of information.

Over next few days we will ask a series of questions. We will ask your permission before we use any personal statements. We are very keen to gain insight into complexities of managing care and seek permission to contact you through private message. If you do not want to be contacted please start your message with 'No'.

SLEEP
1. What strategies can you share for others to help manage:
• giving overnight medications
• caring for your unsettled loved one overnight
• having to turn your loved one overnight
• coping with overnight crisis
• coping with calling out throughout the night

2. What do you find the most challenging about sleeping well and getting enough sleep?
3. What strategies/approaches do you use to help you get to sleep?
I've never been a 'good' sleeper - even before I started caring !

1. What strategies can you share for others to help manage:
• giving overnight medications - not applicable

• caring for your unsettled loved one overnight - actually getting her to bed is my main problem - usually start hinting about an hour beforehand !

• having to turn your loved one overnight not applicable

• coping with overnight crisis - not applicable now I'm living with her

• coping with calling out throughout the night - get up, settle caree and go back to bed

2. What do you find the most challenging about sleeping well and getting enough sleep? - the feeling of having a hangover the following day !

3. What strategies/approaches do you use to help you get to sleep? - dark room (heavy curtains); deep breathing exercises and if all else fails - Nytol !
1. What strategies can you share for others to help manage:
• giving overnight medications
If its a regular one get it out ready if possible or if its as and when don't hide it at the back of the cupboard so you have to hunt for it when your half asleep
• caring for your unsettled loved one overnight
settle with as little fuss as possible as quickly as possible
• having to turn your loved one overnight
N/A
• coping with overnight crisis
I keep a list of meds and conditions gp details etc handy so I don't have to worry about it if I need it (also useful for kids if I'm not in and something happens). Have emergency bag ready packed. Also always have a plan and a back up plan (eg alternative emergency babysitter/dog sitter)
• coping with calling out throughout the night
settle with as little fuss as possible as quickly as possible.
SLEEP
1. What strategies can you share for others to help manage:
• giving overnight medications
N/A
• caring for your unsettled loved one overnight
verbal reassurance, item of my clothing to snuggle up to, radio/music on, weighted blanket, light on low, sitting with them until they settle

• having to turn your loved one overnight
N/A
• coping with overnight crisis
You just do, on auto pilot. But things seem worse at night and if you live in terraced housing and the caree is loud - this adds to your stress because you worry about the neighbours

• coping with calling out throughout the night
Set list of progressive strategies ie try ignoring, verbal reassurance, offer toilet or drink of water, turn on radio again and low lighting (on timer to go off again.)

2. What do you find the most challenging about sleeping well and getting enough sleep?
Not getting enough myself over a succession of days lowers tolerance, increases irritability, loss of energy, eventually start to feel sick. Caree more challenging if also sleep deprived.

3. What strategies/approaches do you use to help you get to sleep?
Listening to ipod - music/audiobook/relaxation CD/ meditation / hypnosis. Reading in bed. Aromatherapy oils, nytol herbal, have tried a nightcap .
I wish I could sleep all night its either an over active brain keeping me awake, Sarah up and down all night or the noisy neighbours!

SLEEP
1. What strategies can you share for others to help manage:
I dont have any

• giving overnight medications
I always have medication in the bedroom, painkillers and lucozade in case, also bottles of water

• caring for your unsettled loved one overnight
Its on going and I have no answers

• having to turn your loved one overnight
Not applicable but I have to help hubby out of bed as he siezes up in the night and he needs the loo at least 4 times

• coping with overnight crisis
Not good in a crisis

• coping with calling out throughout the night
This has been part of my life for so long I work on autopilot

2. What do you find the most challenging about sleeping well and getting enough sleep?
Everything

3. What strategies/approaches do you use to help you get to sleep?
I dont sleep but I have been known to take Mums sleeping pills but they dont work, they work for 2 hours and then I am wide awake again
If you can tell yourself that yes it is very difficult but at times its necessary. I have worked nightshifts for nearly 18 years and 2 years working days now has still had an affect on my ability to sleep properly. My first severe encounter with insomnia began when I lost my sister not long after losing our mother but it did come in handy when my gran was dying with cancer and preferred me to keep her skin as pain free as possible. I am honest with my condition and sometimes need medication but don't rely on it always but the knowledge of it being there helps settle me. I also am truthful with my employer who I care for and she is very similar and we have both agreed that I am more beneficial in the afternoon and evenings and my hours have been changed which I feel a lot more employers should take into consideration. It makes sense to have a person work when they feel at their best. I think the 12 hour shifts that most carers do nowadays may suit some but a lot of people would not and cannot commit to this shift pattern. It's a pity as flexibility is key to maintaining morale and lots of would be staff are in other areas of employment but spread their working days over a longer period of their week but still work the same hours as others working lomg shifts with more days to themselves not going to work.
Lorna, can I ask if you are a carer or a paid careworker?
Reason being, it seems from what you have posted that you are actually a careworker and are paid to do this job?

No offence meant at all but this forum is actually for carers..those who look after a family member/friend or someone else and are not paid for doing so. I cared fror my daughter full time until recently and can honestly say that I never looked after her in 'shifts'!

If your caring provides you with a wage then you are a careworker, if you are unwaged and look after someone close to you then you are indeed a carer and I apologise for getting the wrong end of the stick. Image
Both. I have been a carer for the elderly for 20 years now and am currently working for a private disabled client. I care for a man in his late Seventies who is also disabled but he is in my eyes like a father. If I can help don't hesitate to ask as I do like to try my best to keep knowledge skills up to date and any tips I like the idea of are always appreciated.
Life is stressfull at times Ladybird but please take a breather and try not to assume that new comers to this useful website are here without permission. Please be aware that the Internet is extremely useful for information but should be used in a light mannered fashion as most web sites cannot guarantee that all info is completely accurate.
I see that you have been enjoying this site also and I hope you continue to do so but try and keep what you feel terms another person a carer or care worker as your view and not a factual term. My employer uses the title Personal Assistant when advertising for staff and when I care for my elderly relatives I prefer the title to be that of relative or advocate and don't refer myself as their carer.
I have read the information that you have submitted to the discussions and have no problem with what you yourself see as your role or title and whatever anyone on here wishes to use as their preferred language should not be so hastily judged as it's support and goodwill that is much more needed when addressing someone unless you opt to go on the fun discussions where you can get slightly more rude, witty, and light hearted without intending to be mean to other users.
Life is stressfull at times Ladybird but please take a breather and try not to assume that new comers to this useful website are here without permission.

Lorna, I don't have need to take a breather thanks, nowever well meant, I find this part of your post more than a little condescending. One doesn't need permission to write here at all but as I said, this site is for carers who are unpaid, not careworkers who are waged.

Please be aware that the Internet is extremely useful for information but should be used in a light mannered fashion as most web sites cannot guarantee that all info is completely accurate.
I see that you have been enjoying this site also and I hope you continue to do so but try and keep what you feel terms another person a carer or care worker as your view and not a factual term.

Oh dear. I really don't want to take issue with you and thought my post was just alerting you to the fact that this site was for carers in a friendly way but as for factual terms, well yet again, if you get paid for caring then you are working for a wage hence you are a careworker, NOT a carer. If you don't like facts that is your problem not mine.

My employer uses the title Personal Assistant when advertising for staff and when I care for my elderly relatives I prefer the title to be that of relative or advocate and don't refer myself as their carer.

Your right absolutely. I appreciate and understand what you have to say about how you define yourself in your unpaid caring role but for the purposes of this forum, it is important to make the differential between those who are paid for caring and those who are not.

I have read the information that you have submitted to the discussions and have no problem with what you yourself see as your role or title and whatever anyone on here wishes to use as their preferred language should not be so hastily judged as it's support and goodwill that is much more needed when addressing someone unless you opt to go on the fun discussions where you can get slightly more rude, witty, and light hearted without intending to be mean to other users.

I didn't hastily judge you, I just asked a simple question in a polite manner as it was not clear from your posts whether you were a carer or not..as I said previously there are very few carers who work shifts, for most of us it is a constant responsibility that does not have a clocking off time. I have had wonderful support from other users on here and hope I have been of some use to others as well.
I'm fairly sure that I haven't been mean to anyone, only honest during discussions. I also have every right to frequent whichever area of the forum that I need to thanks, I don't need to be policed by you. If I am out of line, then there are enough moderators that would deal with it.