Health Advice



Is arthritis pain making your lose sleep? Try this

By Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. on

In the 2002 movie "Insomnia," Al Pacino plays a Los Angeles detective looking for a suspect in the land of the midnight sun -- an Alaskan town named Nightmute (we kid you not). His character, Dormer, is racked with insomnia caused by personal and professional problems and the endless daylight.

For the 32.5 million Americans with osteoarthritis, problems with insomnia hit closer to home. It's estimated that about 70% of them contend with sleep problems because of nagging pain. The sleep disturbances then make the pain worse. And around and around. It goes in a vicious cycle. Anything that can ease the insomnia is welcome.

A study in JAMA Network, called OATS (Osteoarthritis and Therapy for Sleep), shows that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia delivered over the phone can ease sleep woes, reduce arthritis pain and lessen insomnia-related anxiety. All it takes is six 20- to 30-minute telephone sessions over eight weeks. We suggest you consider adding CBT-I to a routine of other smart ways of easing osteoarthritis pain.

First, talk to your doc about taking the supplement ASU (avocado/soybean unsaponifiables) three times a day. It's been shown to ease joint pain and stiffness and decrease reliance on NSAIDs and other pain relievers. Also, try acupuncture and do exercises recommended by your doctor to strengthen muscles surrounding sore joints. Then, to find a phone-based CBT-I therapist, go to or call the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies at 212-647-1890. Call the potential therapists to get started. That'll leave you feeling your OATS!



Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer Emeritus at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into "The Dr. Oz Show" or visit

(c)2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

(c) 2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.



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