Stimulus control therapy is based upon the premise that time spent in bed worrying about sleep is counterproductive to initiating sleep and creates secondary conditioning to sleeplessness. The therapy involves the recommendation that the patient gets out of bed when awake and do something to get the mind off sleeping, allowing the natural sleep process to resume.
- Go to bed only when sleepy.
- Use bed only for sleeping – for example: do not read, watch TV or eat in bed.
- If unable to sleep, move to another room. Stay awake until really sleepy. The goal is to associate bed with falling asleep quickly.
- Repeat #3 as often as necessary. i.e.: If unable to sleep, move to another room. Stay up until really sleepy. The goal is to associate bed with falling asleep quickly.
- Awaken at the same time every morning, regardless of total sleep time.
- Do not take naps.