The Sept. issue of Current Psychiatry has a brief, but informative, article by 3 Minnesota physicians about behavioral treatment for sleep problems.  “Sleep hygiene helps patients catch some ZZZs” provides some basic suggestions for behavioral interventions to help patients sleep better, and even though the article is written by MDs it is a good reminder to mental health therapist to:

  • Discuss sleep regularly with patients;
  • Give patients handouts about sleep hygiene;
  • Involve the patient’s family to help support sleep hygiene changes, and
  • Encourage patients to keep a sleep diary.

mhconcierge, is a fan of activity trackers (a major blog is in the works on the topic) and also recommends discussing the benefits of using an activity tracker to get more objective info about the patient’s sleep patterns.  The Misfit Flash, a basic but very functional tracker, is available on Amazon for the incredible price of $15.99 and provides basic, but usually helpful, sleep data.

The authors of the article are:

  • Imran Khawaja, MD,staff psychiatrist, VA Medical Center, Minneapolis, MN;
  • Thomas Hurwitz, MD, psychiatrist and sleep medicine physician, VA Medical Center, Minneapolis, MN, and
  • Ayesha Ebrahim, MD, endocrinologist, Minnesota Center for Obesity, Metabolism, and Endocrinology, Eagan, MN.


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