An online, fully automated cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) can lower depressive symptoms, according to the largest known research data study presented at SLEEP 2015.
CBT-I via the Internet has proven to be an effective intervention to improve sleep in patients with insomnia, and shown promise as an intervention in reducing depressive symptoms in these patients as well. But is this intervention successful in preventing major depressive episode onset in the future?
Frances P. Thorndike, PhD, from the Behavioral Health and Technology Lab of the University of Virginia presented findings of the 2011–2015 NHMRC/ANU (“Good Night” Trial), a study of 1,148 community-dwelling adults aged 18–64 years with insomnia and subclinical levels of depressive symptoms. Participants were randomized to either a 9-week Internet-delivered CBT-I program (SHUTi: Sleep Healthy Using the Internet) or an attention-matched control website (HealthWatch). Patients completed self-reported symptoms of insomnia (Insomnia Severity Index [ISI]), depression (Patient Health Questionnaire-9 [PHQ-9]) and anxiety (Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7 [GAD-7]).