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J Psychosom Res. 2000 Nov;49(5):343-7.

Behavioral sleep medicine. An emerging subspecialty in health psychology and sleep medicine.

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Rush-Presbyterian St. Luke's Medical Center, Chicago, IL, USA.


As the knowledge base in sleep disorders medicine has broadened, a subspecialty that we will refer to as "behavioral sleep medicine" area is emerging. This article will define this subspecialty area, provide some historical context for its emergence, review issues related to specialty training and clinical practice, and suggest needs for future research.The term "behavioral sleep medicine" was selected because it clearly denoted the two fields from which our subspecialty emerged (health psychology/behavioral medicine and sleep disorders medicine). It suggests much about our approach to training, clinical practice, and research, and it appropriately implies that the field is open to PhD sleep specialists, MD sleep specialists, and other health care providers with the relevant training. Formally, behavioral sleep medicine refers to the branch of clinical sleep medicine and health psychology that: (1) focuses on the identification of the psychological (e.g. cognitive and/or behavioral) factors that contribute to the development and/or maintenance of sleep disorders and (2) specializes in developing and providing empirically validated cognitive, behavioral, and/or other nonpharmacologic interventions for the entire spectrum of sleep disorders.

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