"Effect of a meditation-based strategy on sleep quality and perceived stress in older adults living in the community"
Abstract The study assessed the comparative effectiveness of two nonpharmacological interventions, Mantram, a meditation-based strategy, and sleep techniques, to improve sleep in the healthy older adults living in the community. The study also evaluated the feasibility of delivering a 5-week, 60-90 minute, weekly Mantram repetition training program to a sample of healthy older adults living in the community. Qualified subjects were healthy older adults aged 50 and above who are English literate. Individuals with a diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea and dementia were excluded. A convenient sample of 44 subjects consented to participate. One subject left the study due to illness and eight subjects with missing posttests were removed from the analysis. A total of 35 subjects (sleep technique group n=19, Mantram group n=16) remained for the analysis. The study used a quasi-experimental pretest and posttest nonequivalent comparison group approach. A blocked design by gender was used and blocks were randomly assigned to either the Mantram intervention group or sleep technique group. Sleep quality was measured with the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI). The level of perceived stress was measured with the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS). The self-reported questionnaires (PSQI and PSS) were completed before and after the 5-week training. Analysis of Covariance was performed to determine the impact of Mantram Repetition on sleep quality and perceived stress. Multiple regression analysis was implemented to identify the best set of predictors of sleep. The results showed that the Mantram group and the sleep technique group significantly differed in perceived stress, sleep latency, and subjective sleep quality scores post training. The Mantram group exhibited a beneficial change in perceived stress level, sleep quality (global), frequency of sleep-aid use, sleep latency, and subjective sleep quality. Gender and marital status were not found to have effect on the subjects’ intervention response. Marital status was the strongest predictor of global sleep quality and subjective sleep quality. Age was a significant predictor of sleep latency. Perceived stress was the strongest predictor of daytime dysfunction and sleep disturbance, and has exhibited important predictive value on sleep latency and sleep disturbance. Intervention group membership was the strongest predictor for sleep duration.