SHUTi OASIS (Sleep Healthy Using the Internet for Older Adult Sufferers of Insomnia and Sleeplessness) is an interactive, web-based training program designed to help people age 55 and over who have problems with sleep, including:
- Falling asleep
- Staying asleep
- Waking too early in the morning
The help offered by SHUTi OASIS is based on interventions for insomnia that have been developed over the past 20 years and tested in numerous scientific studies. Typically, this type of training is only available from psychologists and physicians who have been specially trained in behavioral sleep medicine, and only offered in weekly face-to-face sessions. SHUTi OASIS was created to make this kind of help available to more people through a convenient home-based program which can be accessed at any time via the Internet.
If you have sleep problems, there is a good chance that you have tried medications to help you sleep better. While medications can be helpful for short-term insomnia, research has shown that Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is an excellent option for chronic insomnia. CBT for Insomnia (CBT-I) focuses on identifying and changing behaviors and patterns of thinking that interfere with good sleep.
The National Institutes of Health State-of-the-Science Conference in June 2005 on chronic insomnia in adults brought together sleep experts and scientists from around the world. The consensus from this meeting was that there is strong evidence that CBT-I is the treatment of choice for insomnia, and that its use should be more widespread. This is the major goal of SHUTi OASIS.
What SHUTi OASIS Is
SHUTi OASIS is designed to help people aged 55 and over with insomnia by using the Internet as the way of providing the intervention. It begins with an Overview, which reviews educational information on sleep problems, and helps users evaluate their own problem and treatment goals. There are five more units, or Cores, focused on specific methods for improving the quantity and quality of sleep.
Each of these Cores takes about 45 – 60 minutes to complete. After completing a Core, users spend a week practicing what they have learned in their daily routines. The next week, a new Core is reviewed. During the program, SHUTi OASIS users complete exercises designed to help develop new sleep habits and skills. SHUTi OASIS users also complete daily Sleep Diaries while using the program allowing SHUTi OASIS to make personalized recommendations.
As you can see, SHUTi OASIS takes time and effort. It is designed for people who are motivated and ready to do the necessary work to improve their sleep. Sleep problems do not develop overnight, and it takes time to overcome them. But, with the help of SHUTi OASIS, you can get your sleep back on track.
What SHUTi OASIS Is NotSHUTi OASIS is not intended to take the place of medical evaluation and treatment. Sleep problems can be a sign of serious medical conditions, such as thyroid disorders and clinical depression. If you have not talked to a physician about your sleep problems to rule out a serious medical condition, you should make an appointment to do this before starting SHUTi OASIS.
SHUTi OASIS is also not designed to be a treatment for sleep problems other than insomnia, such as sleep apnea, sleep-walking, or narcolepsy. If you believe you might have a sleep disorder other than insomnia, you should see a physician or go to a sleep clinic for further evaluation.