The YAC Prime team has been working away with the survey data, and the latest news we have to share is half of the YAC Prime Study participants reported symptoms of insomnia, and about 30 per cent use sleep medications.
Insomnia is a serious condition and can complicate physical and emotional cancer recovery. Since March 13, 2020 is World Sleep Day, they have compiled some helpful hints:
- If you experience difficulty falling or staying asleep for more than three nights per week for more than three months, sleep hygiene strategies are unlikely to be effective and professional intervention is recommended.
- Do not despair — insomnia is treatable! Cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia is brief and VERY effective! Ask your physician or consult a psychologist!
- To prevent occasional sleep problems from becoming a chronic problem, don’t get into bed until you are actually sleepy and don’t lay awake in bed. If you are in bed longer than 30 minutes trying to fall asleep, get up and read/listen to music until you feel sleepy before returning to bed.
- To make sure your brain can produce hormones necessary for sleep, turn off the electronics at least 60 minutes before bed. Silence your phone or — better yet — move it out of the bedroom!
- Bedtime routines aren’t just for little kids! Choose two or three relaxing activities that can help your body wind down: drink a cup of tea, read, or listen to music or a podcast all in lower light before getting into bed.
- To make sure that thoughts don’t get in the way of being able to sleep at night, find time earlier in the day to plan, worry, and process things. Better yet, write these thoughts down in a journal.
Our researchers recommend talking to your treatment team if you have trouble sleep during or after treatment.