Mind-body bridging is somewhat of a “doctor’s secret” when it comes to improving sleep. Most people don’t know about this technique and have never tried it—which is kind of surprising. It was developed by medical professionals from all kinds of different disciplines: psychologists, physicians, mental health and substance-abuse workers, and scientific researchers. The technique has been perfected over the past two decades. Here’s how it works.
Advocates of the technique point out that it’s not a personal-growth type of therapy; it’s brain-based. Apparently, there is a network in your brain called the “default mode network.” It’s largely responsible for keeping your brain awake and processing, instead of slowing it down and helping you get to sleep. Mind-body bridging specifically targets the default mode network in your brain, training it to unwind at the end of the day so that your body can rest, too.
Now, what about clinical evidence? Researchers at the University of Utah tested mind-body bridging along with mindfulness meditation in cancer patients. These patients were too stressed out to sleep because of physical symptoms and mental worry.
The cancer patients found that there was a definite drop in sleep disturbance symptoms after using both mind-body bridging and meditation. In addition, the patients noted a reduction in depression symptoms.
This could be a therapy to explore if you’re having trouble sleeping and nothing else has worked for you.
Sources for Today’s Articles:
A Doctor’s Secret for Curing Insomnia
Nakamura, Y., et al., “Investigating efficacy of two brief mind-body intervention programs for managing sleep disturbance in cancer survivors: a pilot randomized controlled trial,” J Cancer Surviv. January 22, 2013