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Sleeping Pills versus Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for the Treatment of Insomnia

The days are getting shorter, and soon we will switch back to Standard Time.

Sunday 2 a.m. November 4th, will mark the end of Daylight Saving Time. Clocks are set back one hour from 2 a.m. to 1 a.m. While some people have no trouble adjusting to the new time, others suffer from sleep problems and fatigue during the transition.

How can you reduce problems related to the time shift?

5 tips for a smoother transition to standard time

1. Plan ahead: Start adjusting your bedtimes a few days before the time shift. Shift your bedtimes in small steps of 15 minutes at a time.

2. If you are one of the many people who do not get enough sleep during the week due to lifestyle choices, use the extra hour on Sunday 11/4 to catch up on your sleep.

3. Set your clocks back on Saturday evening before the time change. On 11/4, set your alarm to wake up at the usual time and go to bed on time on Sunday night.

4. Try to take it easy on 11/4 and the next few days.

5. Returning to Standard Time also means the sun will rise earlier, at least for a little while. Try to expose yourself to daylight in the morning, as this will help you wake up and adjust to the new time more quickly.

October 18, 2012



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Grieving is harder of insomniacs

In a recent study in the University of Memphis a group of bereaved students was compared with a group of non-bereaved students. As expected, more students from the bereaved group suffered from insomnia than from the non-bereaved group.

The authors predicted that in the presence of insomnia it is more difficult to deal with the grief. They indeed found that specific sleep problems, like difficulty falling asleep because of nighttime rumination or waking up in the night because the sleeper was dreaming about the deceased, were related to more complicated grieving.

Source: Hardison et al., Behav. Sleep Med. 2005; 3(2): 99-111



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Reviews: What do users say about the Somnio Online Insomnia Therapy?

“My sleep coach was so attentive and really motivated me to complete the assignments.” SvdM

“I gained a lot of confidence in my ability to sleep well. Now I know that I can do it.” JF

“I discovered that some of my habits are contra-productive for sleeping. Now I know how I can change them.” KHC

“I am so happy that I am not lying awake at night for hours anymore.” VH

“The advice was much more personal than I had expected.” AW

“The best thing I got out of this therapy is feeling more relaxed about the nights.”JS

“The assignments clearly work. I found the relaxation techniques very helpful.” RW

“I did not expect that an internet therapy could be so personal.” IS

“I sleep much better now, and I've been feeling much fitter.” AG

“The assignments are to-the-point and well-explained. ” BT

“It's fantastic that you can get really helpful advice and support without leaving home.” BD



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iPad, laptop, e-reader and sleep

Reading before bedtime can be a good way to prepare yourself for sleep. However, beware of using computers, laptops or iPads for reading late at night. The blue light emitted by their screens can inhibit the production of melatonin, a hormone helping us to fall asleep. As a consequence, sleep onset will be delayed. Therefore, to get a good night’s sleep and to wake up refreshed, avoid using computers or the iPad at least about 60 minutes before going to bed.

E-readers such as the Kindle, Sony Reader, BeBook, etc., do not affect sleep negatively. These devices use electronic paper and do not emit light. Thus, reading an eBook on your e-reader before going to sleep cannot do any harm.

Tip

If you cannot avoid using the computer late at night, try using white characters on a dark background. You can invert your screen colors as follows:

Windows: On your keyboard, press the ‘Shift’, ‘Alt’ and ‘PrintScreen’ keys simultaneously. Mac: On your keyboard, press the ‘Ctrl’, ‘Alt’, ‘Apple’ and ‘8’ keys simultaneously. You can go back to the normal screen colors using the same keys.



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Are you resolved to be a better sleeper in 2012?

Healthy nutrition and more exercise are amongst the most popular resolutions for the new year. But what about improving your sleep?

Sound sleep is essential for your health and well-being. By improving your sleep, you will elevate your mood and concentration, and at the same time decrease the risk of various physical and mental disorders.

Your sleep deserves as much attention as healthy food and exercising!

However, you might wonder, what if you do pay attention to your sleep, but you’re still having trouble falling or staying asleep? Then you’re in good company, as millions of Americans suffer from insomnia.

The good news: You can learn how to sleep better – without using sleeping pills. Step by step and with practical assignments. Let an experienced sleep professional guide and support you in making the necessary adjustments to your sleep behavior, sleep environment, your daytime behavior or thoughts that might hinder sleep. Let sleep no longer be an obstacle, and enjoy waking up well-rested and full of energy!

With the Somnio Insomnia Program, chances are good that you will sleep well in 2012.

To find out more about your sleep, we invite you to do the free sleep test. It takes about 5 minutes to complete and you will receive a detailed sleep profile with personal sleep tips.



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Effects of video games and social media on sleep quality

Many people, especially teenagers and young adults, enjoy playing video games, chatting with friends, and are active on social media. The effects of these activities on sleep quality are a current subject of sleep research. Research groups from all over the world presented their latest findings last week during the APSS sleep congress in Boston.

In 3 of these studies from groups in Germany, UK and US, students were asked to engage in one of the following activities during the last two hours before their regular bedtime: play video games on a pc or smartphone, use social media, watch tv, read or listen to music. The researchers found that playing video games and using social media resulted in a shorter and lighter sleep compared to the other activities.

There are two explanations for these findings. First of all, games and social media are thought to have a more activating effect on our brain. Earlier research has shown that increased brain activation right before bedtime has a negative impact on sleep.

Furthermore, earlier research has shown that the bluish light emitted by tvs, computer monitors and smartphone screens suppresses the melatonine production. Melatonine is a hormone produced in our brain that regulates our sleep. Melatonine allows us to keep our sleep-wake rhythm in sync with the day-and-night rhythm we live in. In order to do so, the melatonine production depends, amongst other factors, on the presence or absence of light. Exposing yourself to bright light by looking at a computer or smartphone, right before daytime comes down to ‘telling’ the brain to stay awake.

June 19th, 2012



Read more:
iPad, laptop, e-reader and sleep
Sleeping Pills versus Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for the Treatment of Insomnia
Common sleep disorders

More sleep news

For more insight in your sleep pattern, take the free Somnio sleep interview.

...
Switching back to Standard Time: 5 tips for a smooth transition

The days are getting shorter, and soon we will switch back to Standard Time.

Sunday 2 a.m. November 4th, will mark the end of Daylight Saving Time. Clocks are set back one hour from 2 a.m. to 1 a.m. While some people have no trouble adjusting to the new time, others suffer from sleep problems and fatigue during the transition.

How can you reduce problems related to the time shift?

5 tips for a smoother transition to standard time

1. Plan ahead: Start adjusting your bedtimes a few days before the time shift. Shift your bedtimes in small steps of 15 minutes at a time.

2. If you are one of the many people who do not get enough sleep during the week due to lifestyle choices, use the extra hour on Sunday 11/4 to catch up on your sleep.

3. Set your clocks back on Saturday evening before the time change. On 11/4, set your alarm to wake up at the usual time and go to bed on time on Sunday night.

4. Try to take it easy on 11/4 and the next few days.

5. Returning to Standard Time also means the sun will rise earlier, at least for a little while. Try to expose yourself to daylight in the morning, as this will help you wake up and adjust to the new time more quickly.

October 18, 2012



Read more:
iPad, laptop, e-reader and sleep
Sleeping Pills versus Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for the Treatment of Insomnia
Common sleep disorders

More sleep news

For more insight in your sleep pattern, take the free Somnio sleep interview.

...
Smokers have more sleep problems

Not only do smokers complain about sleeping problems more often than non-smokers, earlier research has shown that sleep problems, in turn, can increase the risk of nicotine addiction. Moreover, sleep disorders contribute to the occurrence of various diseases that are related to smoking.

In a recent study, carried out in multiple sleep centers across Germany, researchers have shed more light on the relation between nicotine addiction and sleep disturbances. 1071 smokers (at least 1 cigarette per day) and 1243 non-smokers (fewer than 100 cigarettes in their lifetime) participated in this study. The participants did not have psychological or medical problems, have never been addicted to alcohol or other drugs, and did not use any medication that might influence their sleep as these factors can increase the risk of having a sleep disorder. Sleep quality, intensity of smoking and nicotine addiction were assessed using questionnaires.

Results

Sleep smokers non-smokers
less than 6 hours sleep 17% 7%
poor sleep quality 28% 19%

As you can see in the table above, 17% of the smokers reported that they sleep less than 6 hours per night, compared to only 7% of the non-smokers. In addition, 28% of the smokers but only 19% of the non-smokers reported a poor sleep quality. ‘Heavy‘ smokers (higher level of nicotine addiction and many cigarettes per day) reported sleep disturbances more often than ‘light’ smokers.

The researchers showed that the differences between smokers and non-smokers were not due to differences in age, gender, BMI, level of education and income, alcohol consumption, stress, ADHD symptoms, depressiveness or anxiety. Although there might be other differences in life style and habits between smokers and non-smokers that have not been taken into account in this study, the researchers conclude that stopping with smoking is likely to lower the risk for sleep disturbances.

October 19, 2012



Read more:
Switching back to Standard Time: 5 tips for a smooth transition
Effects of video games and social media on sleep quality
Sleeping Pills versus Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for the Treatment of Insomnia

More sleep news

For more insight in your sleep pattern, take the free Somnio sleep interview.

...