Source November 24, 2014

We all understand that a good night’s sleep is fundamental to well-being and health. But recent studies show that logging extra hours is even more essential for seniors.

Six to nine hours of sleep per night is imperative for seniors’ cognition, according to researchers at the University of Oregon.

For [seniors] a good night’s sleep … helps improve concentration and memory formation, allows your body to repair any cell damage that occurred during the day, and refreshes your immune system, which in turn helps to prevent disease. [Source: http://bit.ly/1qHzQRA

For seniors, insufficient sleep can lead to memory and attention problems, depressed mood, excessive daytime napping and overuse of sleeping medications.

Seniors are already prone to some illnesses, as well as falls, accidents and balance problems. Not getting enough sleep just increases all these risks. [Source: http://bit.ly/1EmwBrt]

Sleep becomes more difficult as we age because our bodies produce less melatonin, which causes fragmented sleep. Our internal clock also changes as we age, triggering us to fall asleep earlier and wake up earlier than we’re used to.

Finding the right mattress to provide restful sleep is important to the aging consumer, but it can raise some challenges for RSAs. Changes in body weight, age and health can affect a senior’s comfort preferences and support needs.

Here are a few tips for helping senior customers select their best fit:

  1. With age comes wisdom … and aches and pains. Mature bones and joints often need more support. Steer seniors toward firmer models with back support.
  2. These customers have most likely bought a few mattresses in their lifetime, but all the new technology in today’s product offerings may throw them for a loop. Make sure you tie the technology and new features into a solution that works for them. Be sure to explain the purpose and benefits of newer elements like no-flip technology, memory foam, temperature-management features, gel foams and hybrids. And don’t forget about the lifestyle base and the adjustable foundations on your floors–these could be of great value to them.
  3. Customer service is key. Bedding is one of the few industries where the face-to-face sell is king, so let your skills shine. Be patient, be respectful and be prepared for questions.