1. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
We know what you’re thinking: “I don’t need therapy!” Well, don’t think of it that way. NASA’s astronauts and ground staff often go for CBT to help them adjust to shift work, so if they do it, why not nurses? You need sleep in order to do your job well and take care of your patients, and if you’re struggling to fall asleep and stay asleep, CBT might be worth a try.
It’s all about developing healthy patterns of behavior. CBT can provide you with relaxation skills and techniques, and help you modify your bedtime behavior as well as other lifestyle factors that affect your sleep. Studies have shown that CBT is one of the most effective methods for treating insomnia. And if you suffer from chronic neck or back pain—not uncommon in the nursing profession—CBT can help you sleep better. For more information about CBT, check out the NACBT (National Association of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapists).
Next: 2. Sleep assessment â†’