Insomnia therapy may slow or reverse decline of cortical grey matter in fibromyalgia

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cbt insomnia, cbt fibromyalgia, fibromyalgia insomnia, fibromyalgia support, insomnia therapyPreliminary findings from a small study suggest that insomnia therapy may have a great impact on the atrophy of cortical grey matter in people who have fibromyalgia as well.

Results suggest that eight weeks of 50 minute sessions of cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia can alter central nervous system structure in people with fibromyalgia and insomnia. Those who received cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia demonstrated increases in cortical thickness after treatment, while individuals in a control group showed thinning of the cortex.

Interestingly, cognitive behavioural therapy for pain did not produce similar results.

“Our preliminary results suggest that while cognitive behavioural therapy for pain seemed to merely reduce cortical atrophy, cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia produced increases in cortical thickness following treatment,” explains Prof Christina McCrae, who published her findings in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. “Demonstration that cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia, a relatively brief intervention, can reverse or resolve pain-related, maladaptive neural plasticity has important implications for chronic pain sufferers.”

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