This fact sheet outlines the structure and components of cognitive behavioral therapy for people with insomnia (CBT-I). This resource is of value to psychiatrists, therapists, and psychotherapists who want to develop a CBT plan for their clients who experience insomnia. Insomnia is a sleep disorder where individuals have trouble falling and/or staying asleep. The condition can be short-term or chronic and may be a result of medications to treat behavioral disorders or other conditions. CBT is a form of psychotherapy that aims to change patterns of thoughts or behaviors that negatively affect their quality of life.

CBT-I sessions aim to teach relaxation techniques during the day and at bedtime, promote better sleep habits, and establish a healthy sleep routine. Identifying behaviors that disrupt sleep, such as electronic use and caffeine consumption, allows the patient and provider to set new goals to improve quality of sleep. General cognitive behavioral therapy has demonstrated effectiveness in changing thought patterns and behaviors in patients with mental and substance use disorders. This makes CBT-I a valuable tool in addressing insomnia that presents itself alongside mental and substance use disorders.

For more information, please see the presentation The Intersections of Chronic Pain, Serious Mental Illness, and Trauma on Sleep.

This resource was first shared in 2018.

(PDF, 237 KB)