Improving Sleep for Older Adults: A Feasibility Study

Silk, Victoria (2023) Improving Sleep for Older Adults: A Feasibility Study. Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia.

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Background: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I) and Brief Behavioural Treatment for Insomnia (BBTI) are recommended interventions for older adults with insomnia. However, adherence to these interventions can be difficult for older adults. One way to increase adherence is to utilise a modified method called countercontrol. Research in this area is lacking despite the negative impact insomnia has on older adults’ sleep, wellbeing, and cognition.

Methods: A systematic review explored the effects of CBT-I on cognitive performance for older adults with insomnia. An empirical study explored the feasibility and acceptability of BBTI with countercontrol in older adults with insomnia. Secondary aims of the study explored whether BBTI with countercontrol lead to measurable changes in sleep quality, cognition, and mental wellbeing in older adults with insomnia, and explored how the objective and self-reported measures of sleep compare to each other.

Results: Seven original papers were included in the systematic review. Most found CBT-I improved cognitive performance in one or more domains of cognitive performance: overall cognitive function, memory, executive function, and attention. The empirical study found BBTI with countercontrol to be feasible and acceptable to older adults with insomnia. All participants were retained and adhered to the intervention. Participants in the BBTI group cited countercontrol as one of the most useful elements of the intervention. Results also revealed that BBTI with countercontrol significantly improved self-reported measures of sleep, wellbeing, and cognition. Clear discrepancies were observed between the objective and self-reported measures of sleep.

Conclusions: BBTI with countercontrol is a feasible and acceptable intervention for older adults with insomnia, and leads to improved sleep, wellbeing, and cognition. However further research in this field is required to contribute to the knowledge and clinical practice of older adults with insomnia.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > Norwich Medical School
Depositing User: Chris White
Date Deposited: 08 Nov 2023 11:48
Last Modified: 08 Nov 2023 11:48

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