How Technology Can Help You Sleep Better

thensfYour Sleep Environment

What Does Your Sleep Position Say About You

Want a little help falling asleep at night? These sleep tech products can enhance your bedtime experience.

Getting the sleep you need is important to your overall health. If you find yourself needing a little help to fall asleep or stay asleep throughout the night, you may benefit from using smart technology and sleep devices. These devices are designed to improve your sleep experience and incorporating them into your bedtime routine may provide solutions to your sleep challenges. These are some of the products you may want to consider.

 

Smart Mattress 

A smart mattress is typically designed to track aspects of your sleep and monitor the temperature and firmness of your bed to provide a personalized sleep experience. A grid of sensors embedded in the mattress can automatically adjust the amount of support the mattress provides, increasing or decreasing the bed’s firmness based on the distribution of your weight and your sleep position.

 

Smart mattresses are a growing category and there are multiple options available to suit your specific needs. For example, the ReST Bed™ combines sensors and silent air pumps to inflate or deflate the mattress according to personal preference and gives you an option to choose manual or automatic pressure adjustments. The ReST Bed™ won the National Sleep Foundation’s SleepTech Award in 2019, the world’s first innovation awards targeted specifically at sleep technology. 

 

Another type of smart mattress uses sensors to detect your sleeping position and modify pressure for support and comfort. Some smart mattresses have additional features, such as pre-warming the bed to your preferred temperature and customizing the firmness on each side of the bed to suit a couple’s different sleeping preferences.

Sleep Tracker

There are many different types of sleep trackers offering myriad features. These wearable tech devices measure your heart rate, breathing patterns, and body movement to provide feedback that may improve your sleep. Depending on the device, you will typically either strap one to your wrist or place it on your nightstand. Some trackers can also monitor sleep duration, sleep quality, sleep phases, and environmental factors like room temperature and light exposure. 

 

In addition, some track lifestyle factors that can influence your sleep by allowing you to input information about how much caffeine you drank before bed and whether you are feeling stressed. You can sync these gadgets to your phone or computer to track your data. Based on the data gathered, sleep trackers can identify patterns in your sleep habits and suggest tips that may improve sleep quantity and quality. Some devices even offer expert sleep content to help improve users’ understanding of their sleep. As an example, millions of Samsung Health app users will soon receive customized National Sleep Foundation sleep health content on their Galaxy 3 Watches.

 

Lighting

Different types of light can affect your quality of sleep. Recent innovations in sleep lighting technology can help you create a bedroom environment that is more conducive to sleep, such as smart bulbs that gradually fade when it’s near your bedtime and slowly brighten your room in the morning (some bulbs even mimic the color of sunrise). You can also purchase bulbs that shift from warm red hues to cool blue ones, depending on the time of day. 

 

Other lighting innovations include smartphone apps or voice-assisted tech devices, like Amazon’s Alexa or Google Home, that let you control the bedroom lights wirelessly, so you don’t have to get up to shut them off when you’re ready to sleep. If you are reading on your tablet or watching TV at night, try using blue light filters to reduce your exposure to the blue hues that the devices emit, which can affect your natural sleep/wake cycle. 

 

Sleep Environment 

Certain devices can help you create a sleep-friendly environment to improve your bedtime experience. Sound conditioners are designed to reduce external noises that interfere with your sleep. These can be white noise machines, which combine all noise frequencies to create a steady background hum that masks distractions. They may also be pink noise machines, which aim to improve sleep by releasing high and low frequencies to slow and regulate brain waves. Sound conditioners often produce calming and relaxing sounds, such as waterfalls, nature, soothing music, ocean waves, and rain.

 

Another way to improve your sleep environment: Give the air quality in your bedroom an upgrade with an air purifier. Air purifiers remove harmful contaminants, such as pollen and dust. Poor air quality can affect the soundness of your sleep, which in turn can affect your sleep satisfaction. Keeping your bedroom air clean may help you sleep better throughout the night. 

 

Top of the Bed 

Smart pillows are designed to enhance comfort while monitoring and tracking things like breathing patterns and sleep habits. Some smart pillows include built-in speakers with the ability to stream podcasts, music, and audiobooks that only you can hear, helping you drift off to sleep faster. Other devices regulate your pillow’s temperature while you sleep and keep your pillow consistently cool through a thermo-regulation system.

 

Sleep headbands are another way to monitor and improve your sleep. These headbands can generate audio tones aimed at enhancing the quality of deep sleep. Some even come with mobile apps that track your sleep patterns over time and measure key metrics.

 

You can also attach bed sensor pads to your mattress to identify your sleep habits. These high-tech pads connect with activity trackers to assess whether lifestyle habits such as eating patterns or physical activity may impact your sleep. In addition, bed sensor pads can communicate with other smart devices in your home to adjust your thermostat, lighting, and noise levels and set your alarm clock to ensure you wake up on time.