Online therapy to treat insomnia? Get the facts here.

Dr. Craig Hudson, MD | April 20, 2017


Online therapy is the way of the future! From the comfort of your own home, you can obtain the quality psychological care you need to look after your mental health. Online therapy has risen in the ranks as one of the most effective forms of therapy. Some professionals have even suggested that it may actually be more helpful than visiting a therapist in person for treating certain issues.

A very recent study published in JAMA Psychiatry found that approximately 57% of the participants tested were successfully treated for general chronic insomnia with an online therapy program. A year later, around 70% of the study’s participants were considered to have had a positive response to the therapy.

Researchers asked about half of the total 303 participants to complete a 6-week cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) program called Sleep Healthy Using the Internet (SHUTi). The other half of the participants were asked to review the information provided in an online educational resource about insomnia.

The SHUTi CBT-based program offers interactive features and tailored therapy that incorporates the primary techniques used in face-to-face CBT. The informational resource on the other hand was untailored, and offered more generic information about insomnia and insomnia treatment.

Overall, the study’s authors concluded that online CBT therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) could be essential to widespread acceptance of pursing behavioral treatments for insomnia.

What You Need to Know About CBT-I

In general, CBT-I takes work and consistent practice. At first, you may not see a dramatic improvement. Some insomniacs even report getting less sleep while completing CBT-I programs. However, most people see positive changes after completion.

Online CBT-I programs are usually 6 weeks long, and similar in style and length to in-person CBT-I programs. Online therapy is typically less costly and does not require participants to travel to a medical office. Online programs are also extremely convenient, giving participants the freedom to complete each stage on their own time.

Online CBT-I is mostly self-guided, so it requires a lot of willpower and commitment to complete. That said, the stages are often simple and easy to follow. With the interactive features of many of these programs, participants are given much of the control over their own treatment.

For even more tips and informative content on insomnia, check out the other posts on our blog!