Chapter 3: Symptoms and health concerns
Sleep disturbance – What is it and what may cause it
One of the toughest things was when she couldn’t sleep. I think it was when her breathing wasn’t so good. She’d be up in the night, then I’d get up, and we’d both be exhausted. This went on for weeks at a time. It was really hard at the time, when I think back.
Sleep disturbance is any change in the way a person normally sleeps. Poor sleep can affect a person’s well being and overall quality of life. Despite this, it is often overlooked and under treated. Click below to read some of the things sleep disturbance It might include.
- Difficulty falling asleep
- Difficulty staying asleep
- Waking up early in the morning
- Not feeling refreshed in the morning
- Feeling sleepy during the day
There are many things involved in getting a good sleep, including physical, emotional, spiritual, and environmental considerations. People with serious illness experience disturbed sleep for many different reasons. Click the arrows below to see some of these.
Symptoms such as pain, shortness of breath, depression, and confusion
Change in activity such as less exercise and more time in bed
Change in surroundings such as a different bed, room, or hospital room
Medications that can disrupt sleep such as dexamethasone or diuretics
Certain diseases or treatments that can change the way a person’s brain works to help them sleep
Worry, fear, and thoughts that comes with serious illness make it hard for people to sleep
Be sure to track sleep disturbance in the tracking journal. This will help to share information with the healthcare provider.
Click here to see the questions a healthcare provider may ask to understand more about the disturbed sleep. You can use these to guide for the tracking journal.