Cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) is a first-line therapy for insomnia disorders. We assessed changes in discrepancies between subjective and objective sleep measures and correlations between discrepancy changes and clinical insomnia severity for CBT-I in patients with primary insomnia
Fifty-two outpatients (mean age, 60.3 years; 26 women) with primary insomnia were treated by individual CBT-I (50 min, maximum six sessions, once every 1–2 weeks). One week before and after CBT-I, patients recorded a sleep log and wore an actigraphy device. Subjective and objective time in bed (TIB), total sleep time (TST), sleep-onset latency (SOL), wake time after sleep onset (WASO), and sleep efficiency (SE) were evaluated by averaging 1-week records. Relative values of sleep discrepancy in TIB, TST, SOL, WASO, and SE were calculated for estimating effects of CBT-I. The therapeutic effects were also evaluated using psychological scales before and after CBT-I.
Subjective and objective discrepancies in sleep measures decreased by 36, 25, and 37 min in TST, SOL, and WASO, respectively, and 7% in SE (all P < 0.001) after CBT-I. Seven patients transitioned from underestimating SE before CBT-I to overestimating SE after CBT-I. Although CBT-I improved relative values of discrepancy in WASO and SE, alongside ISI, the improvement in insomnia severity only correlated with SOL discrepancy.
CBT-I may reduce the discrepancy between subjective and objective sleep measures in patients with primary insomnia. However, a greater therapeutic effect of CBT-I was observed in reducing the ISI, which was slightly influenced by improvements in sleep discrepancies.