Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Insomnia
Status: Strong Research Support
Cognitive-behavioral treatment (CBT) for insomnia focuses on maladaptive behaviors and dysfunctional thoughts that perpetuate sleep problems. The main components of therapy include behavioral, cognitive, and educational interventions. Behavioral interventions focus on a variety of ‘guidelines’ that patients must follow in order to retrain their bodies to associate sleep with bed. Behavioral techniques include stimulus control and sleep restriction (see descriptions below). Cognitive interventions attempt to address and change the many negative beliefs and thoughts about sleep that may exacerbate sleeping difficulties. Finally, educational interventions focus on understanding the different types of sleep and sleep cycles, as well as improving sleep hygiene and other maladaptive behaviors (e.g., establishing regular sleeping schedules, eliminateing napping, and avoiding stimulunts, exercise, and alcohol before bedtime).
Key References (in reverse chronological order)
- Morin, C., Bootzin, R., Buysse, D., Edinger, J., Espie, C., & Lichstein, K. (2006). Psychological and behavioral treatment of insomnia: Update of the recent evidence (1998-2004). Sleep, 29, 1398-1414.
- Edinger, J.D., Wohlgemuth, W.K., Radtke R.A., Marsh G.R., & Quillian, R.E (2001). Cognitive behavioral therapy for treatment of chronic primary insomnia: A randomized, controlled trial. Journal of the American Medical Association, 285, 1856-1864.
- Morin, C.M., Colecchi, C., Stone, J., Sood, R., & Brink, D. (1999). Behavioral and pharmacological therapies for late-life insomnia: a randomized clinical trial. Journal of the American Medical Association, 281, 991-999.
- Morin, C.M., Kowatch, R., Barry, T., & Walton, E (1993). Cognitive-behavior therapy for late-life insomnia. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 61, 137-146.
- Morin, C.M., & Espie, C. (2003). Insomnia: A clinical guide to assessment and treatment. New York: Kluwer Academic.
- Lichstein, K.L., & Morin, C.M. (Eds.). (2000). Treatment of late-life insomnia. London: Sage Publications.
- Morin, C.M. (1993). Insomnia: Psychological assessment and management. New York: Guilford Press.
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