About Me

About Dr. Barth:

Dr. Barth was trained in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I) by three of the country's leading insomnia researchers and clinicians, Dr. Donn Posner, Dr. Gregg Jacobs and Dr. Michael Perlis. He uses cutting edge, evidence based therapeutic modalities (CBT and ACT) to treat insomnia, anxiety, depression, and substance abuse.

Dr. Barth is the past Clinical Director of Addiction Medicine for the Veterans' Hospital in Martinez and for Kaiser Permanente in Hayward. He received the "Excellence in Clinical Leadership" award from the Northern California Kaiser Departments of Psychiatry. He serves as faculty for physician communication skills training for Kaiser in Northern California and Hawaii.


  • BA from Florida State University 
  • Ph.D. from the California School of Psychology, Berkeley, California 
  • Internship and postdoctoral training at the Palo Alto Veterans' Medical Center
Professional Affiliations:
  • American Academy of Sleep Medicine 
  • Northern California Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Network 
  • California Psychological Association 
  • Alameda County Psychological Association 
Areas of Advanced Training and Specialization:
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Alcoholism and Addictions

Comments from patients and colleagues

"My insomnia started after my husband was diagnosed with brain cancer this fall, shortly after our wedding. The emotional and physical demands on me were unfathomable. I didn't have a normal sleeping night for 4 months in a row, and even after doing all the normal sleep hygiene recommendations, my sleep still hadn't improved.

I know 4 months is not that long, but given the circumstances, I was an absolute mess. My health was suffering, I was barely making it through my days, and I was still trying to work and care for my husband at the same time. I was desperate to change my sleeping without the use of sleeping pills.

I finally found Dr. Barth. He was incredibly compassionate and understanding of my situation. I was very nervous about my ability to commit to sleep restriction; I had tried once using an online program but I couldn't complete it on my own. Dr. Barth was very encouraging and convinced me to start it again. The first week of sleep restriction was absolute hell. I was allowed 5.5 hours in bed but I only slept about 4 hours a night. On the third day of sleep restriction, my husband had to be taken to the emergency room for severe back pain. I thought there was almost no way I could cope with this little sleep and the constant crises around me. After my husband was treated and discharged, I called Dr. Barth and he reassured me that it was normal to feel 'like hell' and I should keep at it. I did, and I finally had a breakthrough where I slept for 4 hours in a row, the first time that had happened for months. I kept with it, and overall my sleep has improved dramatically.

There are still some blips here and there, but overall the trend is upward. I am now in bed for about 7 hours and worry much less about sleep. I am able to be so much more functional and emotionally present. I just want people to know that if I was able to do sleep restriction while my husband is in hospice care, and while I am working, and dealing with a great deal of emotions and logistics, then anyone can do it.

Dr. Barth was extremely patient in answering all my many questions about sleeping and extremely warm in our conversations. I cannot thank him enough for his help and for helping me to believe that Cognitive Behavior Therapy work for Insomnia. I know that I will still need to work on this for some time, but I know that I couldn't have kept going the way that I was feeling without sleeping. I highly recommend Dr. Barth and CBT for insomnia."

"After suffering from insomnia for over twenty years I came to a point where I knew all of my own personal "techniques" for sleeping were growing ever-more useless.

Was referred to Dr. Barth and when I read from his website that patients can expect positive results within 3-5 sessions I was dubious. Surely this was some kind of snake-oil. After going to 6 sessions with Dr. Barth, I can absolutely say that his approaches and techniques work.  Everything he does, and has you follow, is based on research, but it is certainly a team effort. It requires your own personal discipline for the treatment to succeed.

You must prepare yourself that it will get worse before it gets better. Why? Because all of the habits/behaviors I had being using to cope with insomnia were removed. I was left in a raw state. 20 years of habits removed in the first week? It was tough.

But then, lo and behold, I slept. I slept like I hadn't since I was young. Now, all of my previous ineffective habits/behaviors are gone and in their place is an actual working system. I sleep. Like I was naturally meant to. Of course, I'm not "cured" as this will always be a work in progress to some degree, but I no longer feel helpless.

I feel like a new human."  S.H.

"After five or six meetings with Rick, I have the tools I need to manage the long standing struggle I've had with insomnia. For the past 15 years or so, I've had chronic insomnia that has limited me and seriously affected my emotional and physical well-being. I've done many kinds of therapy and bodywork, hoping for a solution, and I found it here. I'm now sleeping well most nights and not worrying about it when I don't. I feel comfortable going out in the evening because I know that I can sleep and be well enough rested to function. I've even learned that not sleeping is OK too, and that I can move ahead with my life even if my sleep isn't optimal.

The process can be challenging, but for anyone who's struggled with insomnia and is ready to do some work to get past it and move on, I highly recommend working with Rick. He's a sweet man and a capable, supportive and caring therapist.

This is one of the best investments of time and money I've ever made."  R.T.

"Rick: I wanted to thank you once again for your help. After 12 years of miserable sleep, the change that you have walked me through is fantastic, life changing, and I appreciate it more than I can say. Merci beaucoup!"  R.L.

"I met Rick after I did my search on the internet for a therapist who specializes in insomnia. I am 38 years old and suffered from insomnia for over 20 years. I always resisted taking any sleeping meds, my insomnia got worse as I got older, and I realized I had to seek a therapist.

The day I met Rick, I slept very well. He assured me that it could be cured as long as I followed his instructions. I was hesitant because I suffered for a long time and I doubted that it could be managed in a few weeks. He completely educated me on sleep in the first two sessions and that by itself eliminated all my anxiety associated with sleep and all the negative sleep thoughts. Once we completely finished with the treatment, I requested half an hour sessions once a month for about three months to make sure that I continued to manage my sleep. 

I can now sleep very well and wake up rested. Rick is very funny, easy to work with, and very professional. He encouraged me to practice meditation after we finished with the treatment. I am sleeping well and I cannot thank him enough. I think you will be very pleased with his treatment approach and his personality. I highly recommend him to anyone looking for affordable and yet effective treatment."  M.S.

"Dr. Barth is an excellent therapist. He has a relaxed demeanor and is very easy-going to talk to about all the issues that led to my sleep insomnia that I had been struggling with for many years. Dr. Barth is very patient and helped me recognize some important conclusions in my life that cause my sleep problems as well as introducing a structured framework for tracking my sleep. I am looking forward to continuing to apply the tools that Dr. Barth gave me going forward in my life."  C.K .

"For years, I have suffered countless nights of poor sleep and the side effects and disappointment of various sleeping pills.  I am so glad I went through this treatment with Dr. Barth.  I wish I had done this 10 years ago when my insomnia first started. Treatment with Dr. Barth was one of the best things I've ever done for myself.  My sleep is vastly improved, and I no longer need any medications."  R.C.

"Dr Barth is one of the most helpful therapists I've ever met.  He has a stellar reputation as a CBT sleep therapist.  He is kind, extraordinarily generous with his time, and he just doesn't quit until he's either helped you or connected you with the kind of help you need.  In my son's case, which is complicated by other medical issues, he did a full intake, consulted with two of my son's doctors, phoned across the country to speak with an expert colleague, talked us through three very difficult weeks, wrote a report, and then found us someone who specializes in the particular interaction between sleep and my son's other medical condition.  If you're having difficulty with sleep, you can count on Dr. Barth to help and support you".  G.J.

"After struggling with insomnia for about a year and trying everything, I finally came to Dr. Barth. His methods for dealing with insomnia changed my life. I am now regularly sleeping well, and when I don't sleep great I have learned not to stress about it. He is a competent and compassionate therapist, and is very easy to talk to. I highly recommend him."  A.W.

"I visited Rick after struggling with insomnia for about 6 months. He was very understanding and patient. He accommodated my busy schedule and was quick to respond to any late night breakdowns! I am now sleeping much better, and on the nights that I do have issues I have learned it is not the end of the world. I highly recommend Rick if you are having any long term issues with sleeping." M.G.

"I came to Dr. Barth seven months ago after weeks of barely sleeping. My acute insomnia had been sparked by an intense backpacking trip and it spiraled out of control. I was only sleeping 3 - 4 hours/night and the more I tried to sleep, the less I could. I e-mailed Dr. Barth in desperation. He was highly responsive and first did a phone session with me. He was incredibly soothing and knowledgeable. I saw him for only a few sessions and gained confidence in my body's natural sleep mechanisms. Dr. Barth is very compassionate, smart, flexible, and responsive. If you are not sleeping, it is worth the money! Do your research - CBTI is the best proven treatment for insomnia and Dr. Barth is an expert!  S.R.

"Fantastic. Rick has put in years with many of the most difficult scenarios, both as a therapist and also while running programs and he has not let his success rate go to his head. He is one of the most humble fellows I know. I have to declare that I've never seen Rick for treatment, but I imagine people encountering Rick's gentle manner are likely also to find him a source of help".    Michael J Kron, MD

"Rick is a great therapist. He's incredibly experienced, he's easy to talk to, very real, practical down to earth and has a great sense of humor. Top recommendation!"    Robert Rosenbaum, Ph.D.

"I worked with Rick on a daily basis for over 10 years. We treated the same patients, and I saw him interact with very unhappy and troubled people day after day. He listened, he empathized, and he helped people move on with their lives. He's very easy to talk to, very patient, and he always seemed to understand what people needed to deal with their problems."  Gerald Frank, MD

 "I have known Rick since graduate school, for over 25 years. I can assure you that you will feel immediately comfortable with Rick. He has an easy-going, accepting personality that invites anyone who knows him to feel at ease and reveal what is most troubling. He is warm, incredibly empathic, and has a good sense of humor. Above and beyond these personal qualities, he takes his work very seriously and has been very helpful to me in consultations regarding clients struggling with many clinical issues. When I think of referring a client with sleep disorders or substance abuse, Rick is always the first person I think of.  You will be in excellent hands".   Steve Kanofsky, Ph.D.

Dr. Richard Barth
California State Licensed Psychologist
License # PSY11975

5655 College Avenue, Suite 315 C
Oakland, CA 94618
(510) 332-1572
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