Mar 31, 2020

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CBT-I Basics to Help You Sleep Better

Sleep is absolutely crucial to your health. A lack of sleep can contribute to an increase in stress, weight gain, and a whole slew of potential health problems. Getting a good night's sleep is so important to your health, we consider it one of our Core 4. For optimal health, adults should be getting seven to nine hours of restful sleep a night.

Yet, a recent Harvard study said that as many as 70% of people in the U.S. are getting less than six hours of sleep a night and experiencing "sleep difficulty" at least once a week. Considering so many people struggle to get a good night's rest, what are people to do?

Dr. Kelly Glazer Baron is a clinical psychologist specializing in sleep. She works with patients at University of Utah Health to improve their quality of sleep through behavioral modification rather than medications. It's called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I) and it may prove beneficial to most people struggling with their sleep.

Dr. Baron suggests patients try following these four basic rules for CBT-I to start improving their sleep.

  1. Spend the same number of hours in bed that you sleep.
  2. Don't stay in bed unless you're actively sleeping.
  3. Don't go to bed unless you're tired.
  4. Wake up and get out of bed at the same time every morning.

Like any health journey like weight loss or getting in shape, the road to consistent good sleep takes time. Don't expect immediate results, but following the rules of CBT-I may help a person see significant improvement in their sleep in just a few short weeks.

If you are still struggling to get a good night's sleep, talk to your doctor and consider working with a sleep specialist.


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