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A study of flotation-REST (restricted environmental stimulation therapy) as an insomnia treatment
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Social and Psychological Studies (from 2013). Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Centre for Research on Child and Adolescent Mental Health (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2008-0784
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Social and Psychological Studies (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1690-2573
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Social and Psychological Studies (from 2013).
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Centre for Research on Child and Adolescent Mental Health (from 2013).
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2022 (English)In: Sleep Science, ISSN 1984-0659, E-ISSN 1984-0063, Vol. 15, p. 361-368Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Objectives: Flotation-REST is a treatment for deep relaxation, where a person is contained in a stimuli-restricted environment and floats in water with high salt content. The aim was to investigate the effects from flotation-REST on people with insomnia diagnosis, as previous studies of flotation-REST have demonstrated some effects on sleep but have limitations regarding sample selections and sleep measures. Material and Methods: Six participants were recruited through an outpatient psychiatry clinic and posters on a university campus. All participants fulfilled criteria for insomnia diagnosis and four fulfilled criteria for major depressive disorder. Using a single case experimental design, daily changes were investigated on sleep logs regarding sleep onset latency (SOL), wake after sleep onset (WASO), total sleep time (TST), and sleep efficiency over the course of 12 sessions consisting of 45 min of flotation-REST. No other treatments were offered simultaneously. Questionnaire data on insomnia severity (the ISI) and depressive severity (the MADRS) were also collected. Results: Three participants improved on their most salient insomnia symptom (long SOL or WASO), and two improved on sleep efficiency. The improvements were maintained 2 months after treatment. Insomnia severity decreased for three patients, whereas depressive severity decreased for five. No changes in TST were found and two patients did not improve on any sleep measure. The two participants who benefitted the most were students in their 20s. Discussion: The results were mixed. Flotation-REST may be beneficial for young adults with sleep-onset insomnia but more research is warranted.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Brazilian Sleep Association , 2022. Vol. 15, p. 361-368
Keywords [en]
Flotation Therapy, Insomnia, Multiple Baseline, Relaxation, Sensory Deprivation, Sleep
National Category
Health Sciences
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-89415DOI: 10.5935/1984-0063.20210012ISI: 000762300700010PubMedID: 35371408Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85125654126OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-89415DiVA, id: diva2:1650669
Available from: 2022-04-08 Created: 2022-04-08 Last updated: 2022-07-07Bibliographically approved

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Norell-Clarke, AnnikaJonsson, KristofferAhlzén, RolfKjellgren, Anette

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