This non-invasive technique allows the recovery of regular sleep cycles.
Sleep is an essential biological need that permits restoring physical and psychological functions to achieve full performance during the day in all areas of daily life.
Both sleep and wake cycles are part of a basic balance for health and survival. During sleep the body performs metabolic, hormonal, and cardiovascular functions, which result in repair of body tissues, conservation and recovery of energy and neuronal reorganization processes. In addition, it helps to regulate body temperature, functioning as a thermostat without which the living organism would die.
Therefore, when sleep cycles are affected and it becomes a frequent or chronic problem is when we talk about a condition called insomnia.
Insomnia has several symptoms. Some of them may be:
- Difficulty falling asleep
- Waking up during the night and not be able to sleep again
- Sleep very few hours during the night
- Feeling tired upon waking up
The usual approach to treat insomnia includes: identifying the underlying causes, improving sleep habits, behavioral therapy and the use of sedatives, antihistamine or antidepressant medications.
Such strategies usually have a favorable outcome in many cases. However, for those individuals who do not respond to specific medical care or do not wish to depend on medications that may lead to addiction or may have side effects, there is an innovative non-invasive therapy that has had promising results in sleep disorders. This treatment called Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Therapy (TMS) involves the use of a coil that is placed on the patient’s scalp and emits a painless electrical stimulus through the cerebral cortex, acting on neuronal connections whose poor activity causes the lack of sleep.
According to research focused on studying the causes of insomnia, individuals who suffer from it are characterized by presenting excitability in the cortical area. TMS applied on the affected area acts by reducing its activity, thereby alleviating insomnia problems.
The American Psychiatric Association and researchers in the field of psychiatry and sleep disorders have conducted relevant studies in affected patients following a serious and objective methodology. The results, published in medical and scientific dissemination sites, determine the efficacy of TMS as an alternative treatment to relive chronic insomnia. According to the tests performed, difficulties in falling asleep and staying asleep at night decreased significantly in individuals participating in these studies. On the other hand, patients not only recovered hours of sleep, but also their quality, which was positively reflected in their daily performance.
In 2013, a study on 120 patients with chronic primary insomnia abstracted in the National Center for Biotechnology Information, concluded that “TMS treatment significantly better-improved stage III sleep and REM sleep cycle compared with two control groups. ¨By studying multiple patient groups, doctors were able to determine the real-world impact of TMS on sleep. The authors concluded that “TMS is more advantageous than both medication and psychotherapy in improving sleep architecture. Further, TMS significantly decreases the body awakening level and provides a better long-term treatment effect.”