What patients said they needed

  • Listening, empathy, taking the problem seriously
  • Health beliefs: concerns about sleep tablets vs. need for help 
  • Previous self-help: what they have tried already: OTC, complementary 
  • Careful assessment 
  • Problem focused therapy: including CBT-i

Patients had tried to resolve insomnia themselves, often for months or years.

Consulting was often a last resort and by the time they consulted patients felt they needed to convince practitioners that their sleep difficulties were serious and that a sleeping tablet was the only available option.


Dyas JV, Apekey TA, Tilling M, Middleton H, Siriwardena AN. Patients’ and clinicians’ experiences of consultations in primary care for sleep problems and insomnia: a focus group study. BJGP 2010; 60: 329 -333.