Insomnia: ‘Long-distance’ CBT as effective as in-person therapy

Thousands of people around the world experience insomnia, which affects their quality of life, health, and productivity. One effective way of managing insomnia is cognitive behavioral therapy, but many individuals may not have the time or money to visit a therapist’s office. So, what is the solution?

Studies have shown that at least 10–30% of the world’s population, if not more, deal with insomnia, a sleep disorder in which people frequently have difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, or getting good quality sleep.

Chronic insomnia can also increase a person’s sense of fatigue and their risk of experiencing poor mental health. People with insomnia also report having other health conditions more often than people who do not experience this sleep disturbance.

Full story at Medical News Today

How sleep and mood impact working memory

Two new studies assess how working memory — the memory we use on a day-to-day basis in decision-making processes — is affected by age, mood, and sleep quality and whether these factors impact memory together or on their own.

Working memory is the short-term memory that a person uses on a daily basis while navigating the world, assessing situations, using language, and making decisions.

As a person advances in age, this faculty tends to decline, but there are also other factors — particularly depressed mood and low sleep quality — that can affect it, both in the short and long terms.

Full story at Medical News Today

A good night’s sleep could lower cardiovascular risk

Can the duration and quality of your sleep affect your cardiovascular health? A new study suggests there is a connection between how much sleep you get each night — and how well you sleep — and the risk of cardiovascular problems.

Many studies have emphasized the importance of sleep in maintaining our health and well-being in general. Increasingly, however, researchers are finding out how sleep quality affects specific aspects of a person’s health.

For instance, one recent study that was covered by Medical News Today found that poor sleep could well be a telltale sign of the development of Alzheimer’s disease. Another study tied sleep problems with high blood pressure, at least in women.

Full story at Medical News Today

The dangers of driving after restricted sleep and moderate alcohol intake

In a recent study, combining moderate alcohol consumption (within legal limits for driving) and moderate sleep restriction led to greater drowsiness and increased deficits in attention, compared with either sleep restriction or alcohol intake alone.

The synergistic effects lasted between 2 and 3 hours. Also, peak impairment occurred not at peak alcohol levels but 30 to 60 minutes after, despite receiving rest intervals in between testing.

Full story of alcohol intake and sleep at Science Daily

Lack of Sleep May Increase Risk of Drug and Alcohol Use in Male Teens

A new study suggests a lack of adequate sleep may increase the risk of drug and alcohol use in male teens. The study of 186 boys found duration and quality of sleep at age 11 were associated with early substance use throughout adolescence.

“If we just look at age 16, the group of kids getting the most sleep… only about half of them had tried alcohol,” lead researcher Brant Hasler told CBS Pittsburgh. “If we look at the group of kids getting the least sleep, nearly three quarters of them had tried.”

Full story of male teens lack of sleep and substance abuse at drugfree.org