How CBT-I Can Help With Insomnia And Mental Health

How CBT-I Can Help With Insomnia And Mental Health

Sleep is an essential component of our overall well-being. It helps us recover from the day’s activities, rejuvenates our body, and prepares us for the day ahead. However, a large portion of the population struggles with insomnia, which can have a significant impact on mental health as well.

Insomnia affects mental health and well-being as improper sleep schedules and insufficient sleep can exhaust both your mind and body.

People who have trouble falling asleep can benefit from the evidence-based treatment known as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I). People who use CBT-I learn how to alter their sleep-related behavior, which can result in better sleep and mental health.

CBT-I is a type of approach that incorporates a mix of sleep instruction, relaxation practice, stimulus control, and cognitive restructuring. People can use these methods to get to sleep and stay asleep all through the night.

CBT-I can provide relief from numerous sleep disorders, such as insomnia, shift work sleep disorder, and restless leg syndrome. Treating your insomnia can help with your stress and anxiety, two additional mental health issues.

If you are looking for sleep disorder treatment in Ottawa, contact Renew Neurotherapy and let us help you feel better faster!

How Does Insomnia Affect Mental Health?

Millions of individuals all around the world suffer from insomnia, a sleep disorder that includes difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep and falling back to sleep. Numerous factors, including stress, anxiety, sadness, and medical disorders, might contribute to insomnia. According to estimates, it is believed that insomnia affects approximately 33% of the world’s population. Even people without chronic insomnia often struggle with sleep problems. There are various ways that insomnia affects mental health, including:

Increased stress and anxiety

Poor sleep makes it difficult to deal with situations involving minor stress. Daily hassles can become a major source of frustration leading to stress and anxiety.

Psychiatry’s American Journal published a study that found that those with chronic insomnia were three times more likely to develop an anxiety disorder than people without insomnia.
Insomnia can lead to an increase in levels of stress and anxiety which makes it harder for people to manage their daily stress. Without enough sleep, the body’s ability to regulate the release of cortisol, a hormone that plays an important role in the body’s response to stress, can be impaired. This can cause an individual to feel more anxious, overwhelmed and irritable.

Those who struggle with sleep problems are likely to develop anxiety and stress conditions, especially if the problem is left untreated.

Increased risk of depression

Insomnia is often connected with an increased risk of developing depression. Research in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry shows that people suffering from insomnia are five times more likely to develop depression.

The relationship between insomnia and depression is likely to be caused by the complex interplay between incomplete, interrupted sleep, changes in brain chemistry and other underlying factors.

Cognitive impairments

Lack of sleep can also lead to cognitive impairments. Cognitive impairment is when a person has trouble learning new things, concentrating, remembering details, or making decisions that affect their everyday life.

Having cognitive impairments affects your learning capacity significantly, which can be very discouraging and can affect your mental health negatively. This can lead to difficulties in your day-to-day activities and can impact self-confidence.

Interference with daily activities

Insomnia can hinder daily activities, as it affects overall personal productivity. Insufficient sleep causes irritability and mood swings, which make even the smallest setbacks very frustrating.

Individuals may feel too tired and unmotivated to socialize, exercise or engage in activities they would otherwise enjoy, which further affects their mental health and well-being.

What is CBT-I?

CBT-I, or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia, is a type of talk therapy that assists clients in identifying and altering their sleep-related behaviors and thinking. It is a highly effective sleep disorder treatment that helps people manage their insomnia without medication.

People with insomnia frequently have trouble getting to sleep or staying asleep. People can learn to sleep better with the aid of CBT-I.

The first step in CBT-I is a thorough analysis of the client’s sleeping patterns. Then, their therapist works with the client to restructure sleep routines, root out any problematic thinking about sleep, and integrate stimulus control techniques.

The purpose of CBT-I is to assist the client in establishing sound sleeping practices, enhancing their general quality of life.

How CBT-I Helps Improve Sleep

CBT-I focuses on changing unfavorable sleep-related behaviors and ideas and promoting healthy sleeping patterns. The normal length of short-term CBT-I treatment is six to eight sessions.

CBT-I Techniques

At Renew Neurotherapy, we use a variety of techniques to address the underlying factors contributing to insomnia. Following are some of the techniques commonly used in CBT-I.

Stimulus control

To encourage healthy sleeping patterns, this strategy focuses on altering the sleeping environment itself. This includes creating a regular sleep routine, only using one’s bed for sleeping and avoiding activities that can disrupt sleep, like using electronics just before bed, and moderating caffeine, and alcohol.

Sleep restriction

This technique involves limiting the amount of time spent in bed to improve sleep quality. It can help individuals reduce the time spent lying in bed awake (feeling stressed about being unable to sleep and strengthening negative associations with the bed and sleep) and establish a consistent sleep schedule.

Relaxation techniques

Relaxation techniques are the techniques that help you relax your body and mind. Some of these techniques are progressive muscle relaxation, deep breathing, and guided imagery. These can help individuals reduce stress and promote relaxation before sleep.

Cognitive restructuring

This technique involves identifying and confronting negative thoughts and beliefs about sleep that can contribute to insomnia. This can help individuals develop more realistic and positive beliefs about sleep.

Benefits of CBT-I

Treatment for sleep disorders using CBT-I with Renew Neurotherapy has many advantages, including:

  1. The American College of Physicians (ACP) recommends CBT-I as the first-line treatment for sleep disorders. CBT-I consists of a combination of treatments like education, such as sleep hygiene, cognitive therapy around sleep, and behavioral interventions, such as sleep restriction and stimulus control. The treatments help clients improve the quantity and quality of sleep.
  2. CBT-I can lessen the effects of anxiety and depression caused by sleep issues.
  3. It has been found to be effective at improving fatigue in disorders such as multiple sclerosis, brain injury, chronic fatigue syndrome, and rheumatoid arthritis.
  4. It helps improve cognition and focus, which improves learning ability.
  5. It improves overall personal productivity and well-being of a person.


For those who deal with insomnia, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT-I) is an effective treatment option. Both the quantity and quality of sleep, as well as the symptoms of related mental health conditions, can be treated by CBT-I. If you are looking for a sleep disorder treatment in Ottawa, contact Renew Neurotherapy to book your CBT-I session.

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