Meditation

How Can Mindfulness Meditation Improve Sleep? – News-Medical.net

Summary

A team of researchers has made a ground-breaking discovery on the use of the popular mindfulness meditation app, Calm, in improving sleep in adults with sleep disturbance.

Image Credit: fizkes/Shutterstock.com

This randomized controlled trial demonstrates that the Calm app can be used to treat fatigue, daytime sleepiness, and pre-sleep arousal in adults with sleep disturbance.”

Huberty et al., 2021

These findings were published in the PLOS ONE…….

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A team of researchers has made a ground-breaking discovery on the use of the popular mindfulness meditation app, Calm, in improving sleep in adults with sleep disturbance.

Image Credit: fizkes/Shutterstock.com

This randomized controlled trial demonstrates that the Calm app can be used to treat fatigue, daytime sleepiness, and pre-sleep arousal in adults with sleep disturbance.”

Huberty et al., 2021

These findings were published in the PLOS ONE journal in January.

Sleep disturbance in adults

Sleep is a basic homeostatic need and is critical for the maintenance of normal cognitive and metabolic functions. Sleep disturbance is very common in adults and can arise a result of various environmental, psychosocial, and lifestyle-associated risk factors.

In a study evaluating the prevalence of sleep disturbance in adults, 60% of American adults reported that they live with some form of sleep disturbance such as excessive sleeping, disrupted sleep-wake cycles, and restlessness.

Sleep disturbance causes both adverse short- and long-term effects. Previous studies demonstrate that these disturbances may cause prolonged activation of the sympathetic nervous system and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis.

Activation of both the sympathetic nervous system and HPA axis results in the secretion of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH – a hormone that stimulates the production of cortisol) and cortisol, both of which are normally secreted during stress. Prolonged activation, as a result of sleep disturbance, causes further secretion of these hormones which in turn causes both short- and long-term consequences associated with chronic stress.

The circadian rhythm is also disrupted as a result of sleep disturbance. The circadian rhythm is responsible for regulating our sleep-wake cycle and is controlled by physiological and behavioral rhythms. The circadian rhythm also regulates metabolic activity by sending cues for physical activity and food consumptions and by regulating our heart rate and body temperature.

These processes are all regulated by neurons of the hypothalamus. In sleep disturbance, these neurons are damaged and/or lost meaning that these processes are no longer regulated. The circadian rhythm therefore can no longer regulate food consumption, physical activity, and the sleep-wake cycle. This results in both short- and long-term consequences.

Short-term effects of sleep disturbance consist of the primary outcome, fatigue, and secondary outcomes: daytime sleepiness and pre-sleep arousal. Pre-sleep arousal exists in two forms, cognitive (e.g., intrusive thoughts) and somatic arousal (e.g., headaches). Long-term effects of sleep disturbance are more severe, such as obesity, cardiovascular disease, anxiety, and depression.

Current pharmacological treatments for sleep disturbance are intensive, are not widely tolerable, and often are paired with side effects. Treatments for highly severe sleep disturbance (e.g., insomnia) usually involve cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). CBT is also intensive, poorly tolerated and is costly, and therefore is not widely accessible.

Mindfulness mediation is a less …….

Source: https://www.news-medical.net/health/How-Can-Mindfulness-Meditation-Improve-Sleep.aspx