A recent study found that cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia delivered via telemedicine is as effective as in-person treatment.
Results from a randomized controlled trial show that both delivery methods are equal Improvements in sleep outcomes, measured by sleep diaries, were effective. They were also equally effective in reducing self-reported sleep latency and falling asleep upon waking. They also increased total sleep time and sleep efficiency.
Furthermore, there were no differences between the two delivery methods in patients’ perception of the therapeutic warmth or confidence in the therapist’s abilities.
Cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia is rated equally highly by patients
“”The most surprising findings of the study were that, contrary to our hypotheses, participants who received CBT for insomnia via telemedicine rated the therapist alliance similarly to participants who received face-to-face CBT for insomnia”, said study leader J Todd Arnedt of the University of Michigan.
“Additionally, treatment satisfaction ratings were the same for participants receiving in-person and telemedicine treatment. Compared to other remote modalities, telemedicine can provide a unique blend of patient convenience while maintaining the fidelity of face-to-face interaction.”
Insomnia includes difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, or regularly waking up earlier than desired, although there is enough time to sleep in bed. Daytime symptoms associated with insomnia include fatigue or drowsiness; feeling dissatisfied with sleep; have trouble concentrating; feeling depressed, anxious or irritable; and have low motivation or energy.
The most effective treatment for chronic insomnia is cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBTI, sometimes known as CBT-I). It combines behavioral strategies such as B. setting a consistent sleep schedule and getting up when you have trouble sleeping, with cognitive strategies, e.g. B. Replacing fears of insomnia with more helpful expectations. Experts tailor CBTI recommendations to each patient’s unique needs and symptoms.
CBTI and chronic insomnia
The analysis comparing sleep and daytime functioning variables included 47 adults with chronic insomnia, including 33 women. The therapeutic alliance analysis included 38 adults with insomnia, including 25 women.
The participants were about 52 years old on average. Researchers randomly divided them into six CBT-I sessions, conducted face-to-face or via the AASM SleepTM telemedicine system. A therapist performed CBT-I under both conditions.
Preliminary results from this study suggest that patients undergoing telemedicine for insomnia may feel as close and supported by their therapist as they did whether they would be in practice,” he told co-author Deirdre Conroy of the University of Michigan.
“Telemedicine could be used more extensively for CBT-I to bridge the gap between supply and demand for this service.”
More information on cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia:
- CBT therapy near me: Search by city or zip code with this handy guide
- A Guide for Cognitive Behavioral Therapists published by the Dep’t of Veterans Affairs: “A Therapist’s Guide to Brief Cognitive. Behavioral Therapy” (PDF)
- An introduction to stimulus control.
- CBT I Training : Would you like to learn this skill too? Check out this helpful UPenn guide.
Study: “Comparison of Therapeutic Alliance for Telemedicine vs. Face-to-Face Delivered Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia: Preliminary Results”Authors: Deirdre A. Conroy, Ann Mooney, Dari Pace, Sydney Balstad, Kelley Dubuc, Alexander Yang and J. Todd ArnedtPublished in: SleepPublished Date: April 12th 2019DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/sleep/zsz067.363Image: by Adrià Crehuet Cano on Unsplash
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