Treating insomnia may ease depression in menopause

Targeted CBT 'can be added to the arsenal' of treatments for menopausal sleeplessness, says researcher

Women going through menopause may have fewer symptoms of depression when they receive treatment for insomnia than when they don't, a recent experiment suggests.

Researchers in the US recruited 117 menopausal women with insomnia for the study and randomly assigned them to three groups.

One group received cognitive behavior therapy for insomnia (CBTI) while another group received a component of CBT known as sleep restriction therapy.

The third group only received education on sleep hygiene or on habits that can make it easier to fall and remain asleep.

Overall, 4.3% of the women had moderately severe depression. Both forms of insomnia treatment helped ease depression symptoms for these women, but sleep hygiene education did not.

"We can add targeted CBTI to the current arsenal of treatments available to alleviate menopausal associated insomnia, “ said senior study author Dr Christopher Drake