Lack of sleep is one of the most common issues faced by people in today's world. Many find it easy to take pills whenever they feel uneasy or keep tossing and turning on the bed.
But American College of Physicians (ACP) said that people suffering from sleep disturbances or insomnia must first choose cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) than sleeping pills.
‘People suffering from chronic insomnia can benefit from cognitive behavioral therapy as it helps improve the cognitive health and sleep patterns.’
Chronic insomnia affects many people in the United States and studies have shown the sleep deprivation can lead to cognitive problems, fatigue, mood disturbances, etc. Also, taking sleeping pills may pose side effects.
A team of doctors looked at about 60 different studies on chronic insomnia and compared the effects of cognitive behavioral therapy against other interventions recommended for sleeplessness.
They found CBT showed much higher outcomes in people suffering from chronic insomnia. CBT involves six to eight sessions of face-face interaction with a psychologist trained to educate and advise people about the strategies to improve sleep patterns.
ACP President Wayne.J.Riley suggested that cognitive behavioral therapy was effective against chronic insomnia and the new guidelines issued by the organization stressed on restricting the use of sleeping pills to 4-5 weeks, with physician consultation at periodic intervals.
He also stated that online CBT could also be an effective intervention for insomnia. Healthcare workers can be trained for providing CBT through video calls and web-based patient education tools. Overall, CBT is a safe intervention for chronic insomnia and does not carry the side effects of medications.