Introduction to Imagery Rehearsal Therapy
The use of positive imagery in the treatment of nightmares appears to be a time-honored tradition with some degree of variation. Imagery Rehearsal Treatment or IRT is the specific and most widely researched protocol for employing imagery techniques in the treatment of nightmares. Several randomized controlled trials have been conducted, nearly all of which show improvements in nightmares, sleep quality, and psychiatric distress. This introductory video was crafted from a longer set of training sessions provided by Dr. Krakow a few years back. It includes the main cognitive restructuring themes used by Dr. Krakow to prepare patients for IRT and then concludes with the three main IRT steps. Any mental health professional with advanced skills in CBT will likely find the program sufficient to begin using IRT. For those with lesser experience in CBT, we recommend our workbook Turning Nightmares Into Dreams (100 page workbook and 4 hour audio program) to supplement this introduction. For others seeking more involved training in IRT, including role-playing demonstrations or related material from our Sleep Dynamic Therapy training programs, please visit our website for details.