Drug Free Insomnia Relief? (Vim &Vigor)

October 1, 2007 by sa4fa@virginia.edu

If you’re among the 30 percent of Americans who report having insomnia, a new Internet intervention may one day help you get better quality sleep. Developed at the University of Virginia Health System, Sleep Healthy Using the Internet, or SHUTi, is an online program that uses cognitive-behavioral therapy to help people overcome insomnia. A UVA study, funded by the National Institute of Health, is measuring SHUTi’s effectiveness. “Unlike prescription sleep aids, you don’t have to worry about dependence with SHUTi” says Lee Ritterband, Ph.D., behavioral medicine training director in the UVA Department of Psychiatry and creator of SHUTi. “Medications can be helpful for short-term insomnia, but experts agree that cognitive-behavioral therapy is better at helping people overcome chronic incomnia.”