Pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments for nightmare disorder

  title={Pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments for nightmare disorder},
  author={Michael R Nadorff and Karen K. Lambdin and Anne Germain},
  journal={International Review of Psychiatry},
  pages={225 - 236}
Abstract Interest in the treatment of nightmares has greatly increased over the last several years as research has demonstrated the clinical significance of nightmare disorder. This paper provides an overview of nightmare disorder, its clinical relevance, and the leading treatments that are available. In particular, the paper defines nightmare disorder and then summarize the recent literature examining the clinical relevance of nightmare disorder, including its relation to post-traumatic stress… 

The efficacy of prazosin for the treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder nightmares in U.S. military veterans

Prazosin has been shown to be effective in the treatment of PTSD trauma-related nightmares and should be initiated as an adjunctive treatment to promote sleep in those suffering from PTSD nightmares.

Aetiology and treatment of nightmare disorder: State of the art and future perspectives

An overview of the state of the art in research on the aetiology and treatment of nightmare disorder and further perspectives on these issues are outlined and some future perspectives and potential further developments of nightmare treatments and research into nightmare aetology are highlighted.

Nightmares and PTSD: Characterization, Theories, and Treatment Approaches

Clinically, nightmares in PTSD are associated with significant distress and morbidity, and numerous medications have been evaluated for the treatment of nightmares with prazosin standing out as the most promising of these pharmacotherapies.

Treatment of Nightmares in Psychiatric Inpatients With Imagery Rehearsal Therapy: An Open Trial and Case Series

Preliminary evidence is provided that IRT can be used safely and effectively in a hospital environment to benefit patients suffering from serious mental illnesses, often in the midst of significant life crises.

Nightmares in Patients with Major Depressive Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, and Psychotic Disorders: A Systematic Review

Nightmares are overrepresented in mood and psychotic disorders, with the frequency associated with suicidal behaviors and the distress associated with the psychiatric disorder severity.

Nightmares in Migraine: A Focused Review

A brief overview of the current understanding of nightmares in migraine is given to highlight the open questions and value of further research.

The Psychophysiology of PTSD Nightmares

Trauma-related nightmares distinguish posttraumatic stress disorder from related mood and anxiety disorders and promise a privileged view into its pathophysiology. This promise has been unkept, in

Nightmares and Suicide in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: The Mediating Role of Defeat, Entrapment, and Hopelessness.

For the first time, it is shown that the relationship between nightmares and suicidal behaviors is partially mediated by a multistep pathway via defeat, entrapment, and hopelessness.



Best practice guide for the treatment of nightmare disorder in adults.

  • R. AuroraR. Zak T. Morgenthaler
  • Psychology, Medicine
    Journal of clinical sleep medicine : JCSM : official publication of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine
  • 2010
Prazosin is recommended for treatment of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)-associated nightmares. Level A. Image Rehearsal Therapy (IRT) is recommended for treatment of nightmare disorder. Level

Clinical importance of nightmare disorder in patients with dissociative disorders

Among patients with DD, those with ND had a higher rate of self‐mutilative behavior, a history of suicide attempt in the last year, and comorbidity with borderline personality disorder than those without ND.

Treatment of nightmares with prazosin: a systematic review.

Physiological predictors of response to exposure, relaxation, and rescripting therapy for chronic nightmares in a randomized clinical trial.

  • Joanne L. DavisJ. Rhudy E. Bartley
  • Psychology, Medicine
    Journal of clinical sleep medicine : JCSM : official publication of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine
  • 2011
Findings provide additional support for the use of ERRT in treating nightmares and related difficulties and improving sleep.

Clonazepam for Treatment of Sleep Disturbances Associated with Combat-Related Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Clonazepam therapy was largely ineffective in improving sleep disturbances, particularly nightmares, associated with combat-related PTSD, and further studies are needed to further define the role of this widespread clinical practice.

The beneficial effects of one treatment session and recording of nightmares on chronic nightmare sufferers.

All anxiety, depression, somatization, hostility and total distress scores decreased substantially in the Rehearsal group, and changes in the Recording group were inconsistent and not significant.

Imagery rehearsal treatment of chronic nightmares: with a thirty month follow-up.