HCPLive: Michael J. Thorpy, MD, has a conversation with other physicians about holistic approaches to handle insomnia.

Michael J. Thorpy, MD:You mentioned relaxation. Erinn, what about some of these techniques like relaxation, mindfulness, treatment, yoga, hypnotherapy, for example? Have you found any of these to be useful in your population?

Erinn E. Beagin, MD: Some of the relaxation techniques in bed, trying to get people’s minds off of catastrophizing. Oh, my gosh, somebody mentioned looking at the clock. “Oh, if I don’t fall asleep in the next 5 minutes then I’m only going to have 3 hours of sleeping.” Getting your mind off of thinking of other things is important. I found just even 5 15-minute apps.

We try to tell people not to bring the phone into the bedroom with them, but if they can find a meditation that concentrates on deep breathing, get them thinking about something other than the fact that they’re not sleeping. I think that there is a role for that exercise throughout the day, not too close to bed. I do find that some of my patients, and it’s a combination therapy, but some people, if they exercise more during the day, yes, they might be able to fall asleep. Their body’s more ready to fall asleep.

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