The Development of Insomnia or the Plasticity of Good Sleep? A Preliminary Study of Acute Changes in Sleep and Insomnia Resulting from an Analogue Trauma

Cele Richardson, Michael Gradisar, Amanada Pulford

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    5 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The present preliminary study aimed to shed light on the mechanisms underlying the development of insomnia. An analogue stressor (i.e., trauma video) was used to prevent presleep cognitive de-arousal. Subsequent changes in nocturnal sleep and sleep-related attentional processing were examined. Thirty-four participants were randomly assigned to either a cognitive arousal (trauma video; age: M = 22.9, SD = 4.3, 6 male, 11 female) or control (pleasant video; age: M = 23.8, SD = 5.8, 7 male, 10 female) condition. Although no significant differences were found for presleep cognitive de-arousal (p =.39), the cognitive arousal group experienced a significant worsening in sleep latency (p =.048, partial η2 =.12) and an increase in sleep-related attentional bias (p =.032, d = 0.51) following the manipulation. However, changes in sleep and attentional bias were not maintained. Vulnerability to stress did not significantly account for any change in attentional bias, arousal, or sleep. These findings challenge current conceptualizations of the development of insomnia, yet also supporting the notion that good sleep is a default state that protects individuals from sleep disturbance.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)19-35
    Number of pages17
    JournalBehavioral Sleep Medicine
    Volume13
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2015

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