A paper presented In the February 2008 issue of Clinics in Geriatric Medicine discusses the increasing incidence of sleep disorders as people grow older. In addition to different physiologic changes that occur with aging, sleep patterns are also altered. Elderly patients frequently complain of inability to get to sleep, shorter sleep times, and general disruption of circadian patterns that impact on well being. Many common chronic conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes, dementia, chronic pain, and cancer, which are more common in the elderly, can also have significant effects on sleep and increase the likelihood of insomnia. This is a result not only of the chronic medical illnesses themselves, but of the psychological factors associated with the disease processes. Treatment professionals who deal with elderly patients need to be aware of the problems resulting from poor sleep and how these problems can aggravate other chronic health problems.