The perfect night’s sleep is elusive for many people.
On top of the normal life stresses that disrupt our rest, the pandemic has been wreaking havoc with ability to drift off, and many people are reporting broken nights and feeling groggy in the morning.
If you are struggling with poor sleep, using an app or another form of specialised technology might be the answer, according to a new study.
The research, in which PlushBeds polled 1k people to explore their sleep habits, found that 46.7% of respondents reported using some form of sleep technology, with those aged 25 or under the most likely to use it (59.9%).
Respondents using sleep technology were over 22% more likely to be satisfied with their sleep and nearly 50% more likely to have great quality sleep than those forgoing sleep tech.
Nearly seven in 10 respondents who spent more than £225 in total on sleep technology reported having great quality sleep.
So, investing in your rest might be the smartest thing you can do for your overall wellbeing.
The evolution of sleep technology
So, what do we mean when we talk about ‘sleep technology’? It’s likely you already have something to do with sleep on your phone.
The first smartphone app targeted for sleep was released in 2009, exclusively on Apple iOS devices.
That app, called Sleep Cycle, was a digital alarm clock that also tracked users’ sleep patterns. Since then, the app has advanced to use the newest algorithms and analysis software that follow more metrics that aid sleep.
Over the years, many companies have released their own versions of smartphone apps for both iOS and Android devices, lamps, and other monitors that, supposedly, can help people sleep better.
But do they really work? And are they worth the investment?
Sleep technology is now endorsed by many celebrities, including Matthew McConaughey, Harry Styles, and Kevin Hart. These apps and aids have exploded in popularity as people link good sleep habits to better overall health – and world events like the Covid pandemic keep more of us awake at night.
From meditation sessions, bedtime stories for adults, sound machines, to wearable technology like the Apple Watch – there are more options available now than ever before.
Overall, sleep apps tended to help respondents reduce anxiety and create an atmosphere for refreshing sleep.
The most popular of the bunch included Sleep Cycle (50.5%), SleepScore (43.7%), and Headspace (38.2%).
On the other hand, devices worn on the body and external devices, such as sound machines and lamps, resulted in ease of falling asleep and waking up easier, two of the most common insomnia problems, according to the Mayo Clinic.
The most popular wearable technology worn while sleeping included the Apple Watch (57.6%), Fitbit (47.1%), and the Biostrap band (38.6%). The most popular physical sleep technologies were the Dodow sleep machine (49.7%), the Homni lamp by Terraillon (40.9%), and the Cove device (40.3%).
In the study, the sleep tech products with the most users reporting great sleep quality are the Dodow sleep machine (81%), the Apple Watch (78%) and the Sleep Cycle App (78%).
With so many people struggling to create and stick to a healthy bedtime routine, this study shows that the growth in tech developments might be the best tool we have to help us sleep better.
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