Getting enough sleep is known to be one of the foundations of good health. Mentally and physically, if you aren’t getting enough rest, then you’re susceptible to a host of conditions which can threaten your wellbeing. However, it’s also well known that the modern Western world is messing up the sleep patterns humans naturally have, and our 24/7, always-on culture shows no signs of slowing down. Fortunately, though technology is contributing to the problem, it’s also coming up with new ways to help aid our rest and help us get that vital shut-eye. Here are five of the best new technologies to improve your sleep:
Gradual Alarm Clocks
Mainly during the winter months, our routines and wake up times can be far from the natural, seasonal rhythms of sunrise and sunset that would naturally govern our sleep patterns. So if you find yourself having to wake up in the dark, a gradual light alarm clock like the Lumie Bodyclock can help. Set a preferred wake-up time, and the light will gradually come on, helping you to wake up naturally and feel more alert during the day. The light produced triggers your body’s production of cortisol, which supports a healthier sleep/wake cycle and makes beating the winter blues far easier.
Sleep apnea is a growing issue preventing many people from having a restorative night time. The condition causes interruptions to the breathing pattern at night, affecting oxygen reaching the vital organs of the body and causing hundreds of ‘micro wake-ups’ during the night that can leave sufferers waking up feeling tired and unrefreshed. The key to easing the problem lies in buying the best cpap machine – a machine that supplies a steady air pressure through a mask or a nasal piece to remedy breathing difficulties. There are lots of different models, some with add-ons such as humidifiers, so thorough research is key to finding the right individual fit. Some machines can be expensive, but can you put a price on health?
If you’re one of the thousands who report trouble drifting off to sleep at night, meditation apps can be a lot of help. Smartphone apps such as Calm and Headspace take the user through guided relaxation techniques designed to help you unwind and drift off to sleep naturally. If you sometimes feel like you can’t switch off the noise in your head, they can be an especially useful tool for teaching how to switch off. Specially designed headphones embedded in a soft headband or even pillows with embedded speakers can help you to make the most of this technology.
The benefits of aromatherapy in aiding sleep are well documented, and even though it’s an ancient remedy, new tech brings it into the twenty-first century. New model ultrasonic aromatherapy diffusers dispense scent through the room for a therapeutic effect, and a lot of them also feature soothing light displays featuring color-change LEDs. Designs range for ultra-modern to more traditional diffusers in natural textures like wood and stone, so whatever your home décor, you can match the style of the diffuser to that.
Sleep tracking tech
There’s been a massive expansion in mapping personal sleep patterns using sleep tracking tech, and the number of devices on the market is ever-expanding. From smart mattresses that monitor the amount and quality of your sleep to wearable tracking devices like the Fitbit and even wireless bedside monitors if you don’t fancy something physically being in your bed, you can now get a massive amount of data that will help to identify periods of disruption to your sleep.Working out how to eliminate them is the bit that comes after! There are lots of options out there to suit every budget, including a nightshirt loaded with sensors that will monitor you through the night.