When symptoms rob you of sleep
There are so many reasons why sleep is difficult. Find out what you can do about some of the Parkinson's symptoms that may be keeping you awake.
- Motor fluctuations: Wearing off of medication at night can cause movement problems such as tremor or rigidity. Dyskinesia or involuntary movements can be caused by medication. Both problems can keep you up. Be sure to review these problems and your medicine regimen as changes in timing, dose or type of medication (longer activng medicines) can help.
- Dystonia or muscle cramps- Dystonia is an involuntary condition of the muscle that leads to muscle contractions causing cramping, pain and unwanted movement. Dystonia can be an off related problem ocurring at times when medication is low. This is why it can be a problem at night. Calf and foot dystonia (toes bending, curling or foot pulling) are common problems at night. Treatment sometimes requires a slow release form of dopaminergic medicine given at night or medication dosing in the middle of the night. Botulinum toxin is also helpful in some cases.
Bed Mobility and Comfort:
- Try satin sheets or bed clothes to help you turn over and get out of bed.
- Change your mattress- Is it too old, too soft to allow you to move, too high to get in and out of?
- Ask your doctor for a referral to an occupational therapist for recommendations on bed mobility, comfort and safety specific to your needs
Learn more about bed comfort and better sleep in the hand out Sleep Hygeine
- Frequent trips to the bathroom can keep you up at night.
- Use a bedside commond or urinal rather than walking (and risking a fall) to the bathroom.
- Drinking fluids is important to your health but try to drink befire 7pm.
- Dont take your worries to bed.
- Find tips on how to relax and avoid takinging your worries to bed in better sleep in the hand out Sleep Hygeine.
Author: Monique Giroux, MD
Copyright 2011 Northwest Parkinson's Foundation Wellness Center