June 2, 1934


JAMA. 1934;102(22):1846-1848. doi:10.1001/jama.1934.62750220003009

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THERAPY OF INSOMNIA  Sleep is even more necessary for the maintenance of life than is food, for one cannot live as long without sleep as one can without food. Sleep is generally more important than medicine. Hence the patient's sleep should not be disturbed for medicinal treatment, unless continued effect is extremely important, when it should be definitely stated in the written order.

1. Comfort.—  The patient should be made comfortable as he understands comfort. The patient's sleeping habits as regards the number and size of pillows and the bed covering should be respected. A patient who has not slept well during the night and has just fallen asleep in the early morning hours should not be disturbed for the morning toilet. Better that the patient eat unwashed than die from exhaustion induced by insomnia.

2. Psychotherapy.—  As worry is one of the most potent causes of insomnia, the worry

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