Cognitive behavioral therapy aided discontinuation of benzodiazepine in chronic insomnia

May 2004
ACP Journal Club;May/Jun2004, Vol. 140 Issue 3, p70
Academic Journal
This article presents a study, which states that in older patients with chronic insomnia who had been taking a benzodiazepine every night for 3 months, cognitive behavioral therapy plus tapering (CBTT) is more effective than tapering alone (TA) for inducing benzodiazepine discontinuation. Patients were allocated to 8 weeks each of CBTT or TA. Tapering in both groups was supervised by a physician who met weekly with each patient, and aimed at reducing the dosage of benzodiazepines by 25% at 1- or 2-week intervals. Cognitive behavioral therapy comprised 8 weekly small group sessions of 90 minutes and an optional booster session at 1 month after treatment; the aim was to reinforce the bed as a cue for sleep, enhance sleep efficiency, address thoughts that could exacerbate the sleep disorder, and educate about sleep and benzodiazepines.


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