Effects of Yoga on Psychological Health and Sleep Quality of Patients With Acute Insomnia: A Preliminary Study

Kanika Verma, PhD(c); Alok Srivastava, PhD; Deepeshwar Singh, PhD



Context • Insomnia or poor sleep quality is associated with impaired physical, psychological, and mental functions that individuals require for health and well-being.

Objective • The study aimed to evaluate the effects of yoga practice in managing insomnia and its related complications, such as cognitive failure, stress, and impaired quality of life (QoL), for individuals suffering from acute insomnia.

Design • The research team designed a randomized controlled trial.

Setting • The study took place at OPD of Dept. of Panchkarma Uttarakhand Ayurveda University in Uttarakhand, India.

Participants • Participants were 24 patients at the hospital with acute insomnia between September 1 and September 30, 2021.

Intervention • The research team randomly allocated 12 participants to the yoga group, the intervention group, and 12 to the control group. The yoga group participated in yoga practice for 60 minutes per day including Jala Neti- thrice in a week, Yoga Nidra- once in a week for 30 days, in addition to three days for an orientation program. The control group received conventional treatment.

Outcome Measures • At baseline and postintervention on day 30, the research team measured outcomes using the Perceived stress scale (PSS), Cognitive Failure Questionnaire (CFQ), Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), and the World Health Organization Quality of Life Abbreviated (WHO-QOL-BREF). The team assessed the data for normality and applied the paired t test and an independent t test.

Results • Postintervention, the decrease in the yoga group’s stress and sleep quality were significantly greater, except for cognitive failure, than those of the control group. For the yoga group, three aspects of QOL—physical, psychological, and social—showed significant improvements but environmental health didn’t.

Conclusions • Yoga may be helpful in the management of insomnia and other sleep-related disorders in conjunction with pharmacotherapies and psychological interventions. Yoga can enhance QOL by improving overall mental health status and sleep quality and decreasing stress. (Adv Mind Body Med. 2022;36(4):4-11.)

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