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Overcoming Insomnia and Sleep Problems by Colin A. Espie

A useful book to recommend to patients with insomnia who are motivated to change and help themselves, says Dr Holly Simms

This is a self-help guide for people with insomnia, written by a Professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Glasgow. It is designed for those with no medical knowledge, aiming to tackle insomnia using Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). However, he does consider current scientific understanding of sleep patterns to educate the reader about the process of sleep. He discusses what people mean by ‘better’ sleep. He reviews the impact of sleep problems on our ability to function, and the impact on the wider family.

The second section of the book is a self – help workbook for people to work through using CBT techniques. This is a 6 week course designed to assist people with insomnia to help themselves tackle their sleep problems. There are a number of worksheets to help the reader examine their own sleep issues, and then work towards overcoming them and achieving long term change.

There are also discussions on other sleep related issues, eg restless leg syndrome. The use of sleeping tablets and other medications is also covered.

I think this would be a useful book to recommend to patients with insomnia who are motivated to change and help themselves tackle their sleep problems.

Rating: 8/10

Dr Holly Simms is a GP in Hertfordshire

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