Jodi A. Mindell, Ph.D., is associate director of the Sleep Disorders Center at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. She holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology, is professor of psychology at Saint Joseph's University, and is the author of numerous publications on pediatric sleep disorders. She lives with her family in Rosemont, Pennsylvania.
These books are the most recent contributions to the extensive and growing literature on sleep disorders. While they overlap to some extent, each author approaches the subject of insomnia/sleep disorders from a slightly different perspective, and each offers some unique advice. A clinical psychologist with many years of experience in the treatment and study of sleep disorders, Zammit focuses his comprehensive text on providing a self-help program to promote healthy sleep. He uses short case studies to illustrate four sources of sleep problems and encourages the reader to keep a sleep log and take an introspective look at what's keeping him/her up at night. Zammit also examines the impact of alcohol, smoking, and other medications on the sleep cycle and offers tips on creating an optimal sleep environment and establishing a helpful presleep routine. Sleeping pills are discussed at length, as is the value of light therapy and behavioral approaches to overcoming insomnia. DiGeronimo, a veteran medical writer who consulted with numerous experts on sleep disorders, covers much of the same material as Zammit. She also outlines alternative techniques to overcoming insomnia, including herbal remedies, acupuncture, acupressure, and chiropractic care. The provision of online resources and tips in exploring medical research on insomnia is also unique to the DiGeronimo text. Both Zammit and DiGeronimo include information about Sleep Disorders Centers/Clinics and addresses of associations to contact for more information about sleep-related disorders, such as sleep apnea. An experienced clincial psychologist like Zammit, Mindell aims her book at new parents, advising them on how to teach babies and toddlers to fall asleep on their own and stay asleep. The author stresses the need to be consistent in sleep routines, whether it be night time or nap time. Numerous vignettes illustrate common sleep problems and demonstrate what can be done to alleviate them. Weaning from the breast and sleeping in strange places are among the dozens of topics covered. All three titles are highly recommended for consumer health collections.‘Sue Hollander, Univ. of Illinois at Chicago Lib. of the Health Sciences, Rockford