Depression and Insomnia

Angie Szumlinski
|
May 10, 2023
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Insomnia in cases of depression is common and difficult to resolve but did you know that poor sleep quality can increase the risk of falls? Yep, those residents who you observe tossing and turning or simply lying quietly, wide awake at night, are at higher risk for many negative outcomes including falls. But did you know that depression can be a part of the insomnia puzzle? 

A recent study, “MUSTAFI” (Music to Improve Sleep Quality in Adults with Depression and Insomnia), found that sleep quality and quality of life significantly improved after listening to music for half an hour at bedtime for 4 weeks. Music is commonly used as a sleep aid and growing evidence suggests it has positive effects. Genres that have had positive results include New Age, folk, pop, classical, and film soundtracks (no hard rock!). The key, however, is to focus on personal preferences – there are endless choices! 

Interesting, so maybe cutting caffeine after 2:00 pm isn’t the only answer, maybe it is time we take a closer look! Maybe residents struggling to get a good night’s sleep are also suffering with depression. When was the last time you assessed your residents for depression? Hopefully it is a part of your assessment toolkit but maybe not. Do a trial of your own, challenge your staff, and try the 30 minutes of music at night. Make it fun! Identify a few residents suffering with insomnia, explain what you are doing, provide headphones, and let them pick the music if possible. Who knows, this might be the magic needed to assist your residents in enjoying quality sleep! Stay well and stay informed! 


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