In a vicious cycle, people with all different kinds of pain associate sleep with more pain, so they don’t sleep causing insomnia. studies have been done on patients with insomnia and pain separately but never before have they been done combing the two. thus concluding that the thought of pain to come while sleeping is what causes pain, not the act of sleeping itself.
- Researchers from the Sleep and Pain Lab in the Department of Psychology have demonstrated that conditions like back pain, fibromyalgia, and arthritis are directly linked with negative thoughts about insomnia and pain, and this can be effectively managed by cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT).
- Esther Afolalu and colleagues have formulated a pioneering scale to measure beliefs about sleep and pain in long-term pain patients, alongside their quality of sleep the first of its type to combine both pain and sleep and explore the vicious cycle between sleep and pain problems.
- The scale was tested on four groups of patients suffering from long-term pain and bad sleeping patterns, with the result showing that people who believe they won’t be able to sleep as a result of their pain are more likely to suffer from insomnia, thus causing worse pain.
“The study has provided therapists the means with which to identify and monitor rigid thoughts about sleep and pain that are sleep-interfering, allowing the application of the proven effective CBT for insomnia in people with chronic pain.”