Insomnia is a sleep disorder where a person finds it difficult to fall asleep and stay asleep for the duration of the intended time in bed. The duration of insomnia could be for a short period (episodic), could last up to three weeks (short term) or it could last longer (chronic). (1)
Insomnia can be acute or chronic, and different causes are attributable to each type. Whatever the type or the cause of insomnia may be, the person suffering from the condition experiences many ill effects of the disorder.
Some of these effects are irritability, sub-optimal daytime functioning, fatigue, or difficulty focusing on a task. The sufferer may also have problems with logic, memory issues, or slow processing of real time information. They may deal with a compromised immune system, depression, increased blood pressure, disturbed metabolic functions, etc. (2)
There is, however, hope by way of some good research conducted by the University of Virginia and backed by the National Institutes of Health.
On the basis of years of study, a team of international researchers who are experts in insomnia, online health interventions and cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia, have developed a program known as SHUTi™ (Sleep Healthy Using the Internet™) which helps tackle insomnia effectively. The results are verifiable by the patients themselves using user-friendly scientific tools. (3)
The better part of the program is that it does not prescribe the patients any medications. In other words, the program is a natural one, and one that can be implemented in the long-term without any ill effects.
Recent research from Scripps Clinic has already shown that using sleeping pills even moderately increases our chances of death. (4)
SHUTi™ has been recommended by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
So How Exactly Does SHUTi™ Work For You?
SHUTi™ is essentially based on the principles of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy which are recommended by the American Academy of Sleep. The SHUTi™ program aims to bring a change in your behavioral, thought and hygiene practices that directly and indirectly affect sleep to help improve it.
The program is divided into six learning modules. Only one module is taught in a week. This is done assuming that you have put enough thought and time into the newly-learned strategy, and have implemented it before you receive new techniques and thoughts and strategies.
These strategies are taught online in a face-to-face format so that the experience is similar to a weekly session with a therapist, only in the comfort and privacy of one’s home.
Each module will have goals to achieve depending upon your specific needs. The goals are not determined by the program. They have to be set by the person taking the program.
Each person sets their own personal goals on how fast they want to fall asleep, how long they want to stay asleep at an undisrupted stretch, the quality of sleep they are looking for, etc.
The SHUTi™ program is also designed to track a person’s sleep pattern and extent of goal achievement based on feedback from the patient, and realigns the delivery to suit the new requirements.
1. Insomnia; PubMed Health; U.S National Library of Medicine; Web May 2012;
2. Short and Long-term Negative Effects of Insomnia; Sleep and Stress; Web May 2012;
3. Sleep Healthy. Be Healthy.™; SHUTi; Web May 2012;
4. Scripps Study Finds Higher Death Risk With Sleeping Pills; Scripps; Web May 2012;
Reviewed June 4, 2012
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith