There’s a debate going on about the role smartphones play when it comes to our good night rest. One side claims they disrupt our sleep cycle by keeping us up at night, while the other side advocates for the benefits of using smart applications to monitor our slumber and help us improve it. Sign me up for the pro-apps point of view! I honestly believe that these clever programs are an excellent ally since they are designed to help us correct our sleeping habits and thus get more and superior rest during the night.
Turning on the sleep app, when preparing for bedtime, may indeed change your life for the better. The benefits begin with the fact that you don’t need to go to a sleep clinic and investigate your issues the old-fashioned way. Sleep apps will gather information about your slumber habits during the night, while you repose in your beloved bedroom. Besides providing solid graphics and data about how you sleep, some of these apps also make informed suggestions meant to help you boost your repose. Let me underline just a few reasons for which you should use sleep apps when trying to catch a good night rest:
Perfect time for waking up
Most smartphone apps come with this particular feature: they can choose the perfect moment to wake you up, in your sleep cycle, usually within 30 minutes of your set alarm hour. Sleep Cycle and Sleep as Android, for instance, are two of the most popular apps presenting the smart alarm option, but several others have it as well.
Detailed graphics on sleep quality
The advanced sleep apps register the amount of time you spend in bed, and they can interpret the quality of your rest. For instance, Sleep Cycle uses the phone’s accelerometer to monitor the activity of your muscles, and thus it learns how often you move during your sleep. MotionX-24/7 is specially designed to follow body motion overnight and give relevant data about the characteristics of rest. Sleep as Android also relies on your smartphone tracking abilities to record muscle movement; this way, it knows when you’re awake or asleep. SleepBot (Android) and SleepTracker (iPhone) can make a log with the number of hours you sleep; you have the option of keeping a daily journal with this information.
Relaxing music or sounds
Most apps play soothing music or lullabies to help us sink into the world of dreams, or they allow us to combine different ambient sounds meant to induce relaxation. CountSheep, Sounds of Silence, MotionX-24/7, etc. are just a few of them. There are also apps that can play white noise if that’s what helps you fall asleep.
I am a big fan of this feature because snoring is a problematic issue especially when you don’t sleep alone and you ruin your partner’s rest… MotionX-24/7, Sleep as Android, SleepAid, and many other smart apps are just the thing you need to find out not only if you snore, but also how badly and, most importantly, how it affects your sleep. Sleep as Android can help you diagnose the sleep apnea which you didn’t know you had; MotionX-24/7 records audio clips with all the noises you make overnight, and SleepAid compares the sounds you make during your repose with the ones from a medical database, also to help you determine if you have sleep apnea.
Customized sleep recommendations
A few groundbreaking apps become the voice that tells you when it’s time to make changes in your sleeping habits and schedule. According to Try Mattress, MotionX-24/7 shows you graphics which indicate if something’s wrong with how you sleep, based on your body motion during rest. SleepCoacher, an app developed by Brown University, spends a few days collecting data about your sleep and then it delivers personalized indications meant to improve your sack time.