Better Sleep, Better Mind: Improving Mental Health with Sleep Tracking Apps
It brings no joy to say, but insufficient sleep or sleep-related problems are one of the most dire health concerns the global population is going through right now. Daily life has shifted into the 5th gear, and people are sacrificing more and more sleep every day to keep up with the fast pace of the world. Thus, giving rise to problems like sleep apnea, insomnia, and anxiety-induced restlessness.
A good night’s sleep is not something luxurious. It is an essential component that keeps check on our overall well-being, particularly our mental health. When we’re fully rested, we are able to fully recover and wake up refreshed and ready to take on the day.
However, insufficient sleep or inability to achieve rem sleep can make you unproductive; and unable to use your complete potential throughout the day. And this is what the majority of the population is suffering through.
Sleep tracking and mental health apps can help you better understand your sleep patterns and can allow you to get that much-needed shut-eye with its full benefits. This blog explores how mental health apps help to improve our sleep quality. We will delve into the functioning of such apps and highlight their significance in promoting mental health.
The Nap Problem: Insights into Decreasing Sleep Inequity
Did you know about the Russian sleep experiment? That was the pinnacle, yet horrifying example of what not sleeping can do. The problem of inefficient sleep or sleep-related diseases is not something to take lightly. If the problem continues, these inconveniences can give rise to much bigger mental health issues. Chronic anxiety and depression, to name a few. Let’s take a look at some statistics on inefficient sleep cycles.
- According to a study conducted by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), it was estimated that around 50 to 70 million people in the US are currently suffering from sleep disorders.
- 9 to 15% of the adult population in the US suffers from insomnia that affects their daytime activities. (Sleepfoundation.org)
- According to Philips Global Sleep Survey 2019, around 67% of adults globally report sleep disturbances at least once every night.
- Almost 44% of adults globally admit that their quality of sleep has declined over the past five years (Philips Global Sleep Survey, 2019).
Benefits of Sleep Tracking and Mental Health Apps
Sleep tracking apps are not just about collecting data – they empower users to take charge of their sleep health. If someone consistently experiences poor sleep quality, these apps can help pinpoint potential culprits, such as irregular bedtimes or excessive screen time before sleep. Let’s look at some health benefits that sleep tracking and mental health apps provide to their users.
Identifying Sleep Disruptions: One of the most talked about benefits of sleep-tracking apps is their ability to highlight disruptions or abnormalities in your sleep. These anomalies could include frequent awakenings, periods of restlessness, or changes in sleep stages. Mental health apps put these issues in the limelight so you can take proactive steps to address them and improve the overall quality of your sleep.
Enhanced Mental Health: Adequate sleep is closely linked to mental health. It is well known that better sleep is the answer to many mental health issues, and this is exactly what Sleep tracking and mental health apps aim to provide. These apps assist in regulating your sleep patterns for a better sleep cycle. Consistent, quality sleep can lead to improved mood, increased resilience to stress, and better cognitive function.
Detection of Sleep Disorders: Certain sleep tracking apps, especially those with advanced features like heart rate monitoring, can help identify potential sleep disorders such as sleep apnea or insomnia. While these apps cannot provide a definitive diagnosis, they can raise awareness of irregularities that warrant further investigation by a healthcare professional.
How Do Sleep Tracking Apps Work?
People often think that these applications are a hoax and do not provide any firm results. However, the truth is something else. This is why, understanding the nuances of how sleep-tracking apps work can allow us to appreciate their potential and, at the end of the day, enhance our sleep quality.
These apps work with the help of various sensors present in our smartphones or wearable devices. A typical sleep-tracking app utilizes accelerometers and gyroscopes to detect movement and orientation changes. When you’re asleep, your body goes through various stages, each with distinct movement and physiological activity patterns. Sleep tracking apps keep an eye on these movements and analyze the data to better understand your sleep stages and analyze how often you shift between stages.
Sleep-tracking apps perform these analyses with the help of advanced algorithms. These apps utilize the sensors to monitor our movement, heart rate while we sleep, and several other physiological parameters to create a detailed report.
Top 3 Mental Health Apps for Better Sleep Tracking
There are tons of mental health and sleep-tracking apps in the market. However, only a handful of them can provide the results you want. Don’t want to get caught up in the web of applications? No worry, here are the top 3 sleep tracking and mental health apps to make your journey easier.
Sleep Time is one of the most prominent sleep-tracking mental health apps capable of uplifting your sleep experience to the next level. The app closely monitors your sleep cycle via mobile sensors to gain an understanding of the sleep score and analysis. Also, to improve your sleep, the application automatically plays a soothing alarm sound, lullaby, or soundscape if it detects any movements during the sleep cycle.
Key highlights of Sleep Time App
- Features soothing alarm sounds, lullabies, and soundscapes
- Provides integration with tools like Sleep Lab and Sleep Guru
- Includes sleep report with visuals
- Smart alarm algorithm to optimize sleep quality, bedtime, slumber
The Pillow is another leading sleep cycle and mental health tracker app exclusively available for iOS users. The pillow sleep app allows you to monitor and analyze your sleep cycle with the help of an Apple watch. However, you can also use its features by just putting the phone on the mattress. To put a cherry on top, it is a free-to-use sleep app that can also record your snoring or sleep talking for further analysis.
Key highlights of the Pillow App
- Automatically detect and analyze sleep patterns
- Includes a smart wake-up feature
- Features a cutting-edge sleep analysis algorithm
Digipill is a great option if you want to thoroughly analyze your sleep and gain tremendous energy when you wake up. This app is the go-to tool to tackle insomnia, stress, low confidence, and weight. However, the features of Digipill are not free. You can use Digipill with a subscription availed on a monthly and yearly basis. The monthly subscription starts from $4.99, and the annual subscription starts from $19.99.
Key highlights of the Digipill App
- Provides connectivity with psychoacoustics and NLP for better mood
- Provides multiple digital pills that address various issues
- Includes offline connectivity for a better experience
Sleep is the holy elixir for many problems that modern-day men and women are suffering from. With just a few hours of good and rem sleep, you can easily see the difference in your energy, motivation, or overall mental outlook toward the world. A good sleep cycle might be a pipe dream for many. But, these applications created by renowned companies with healthcare software development services offer an escape from deranged sleep sessions and provide baby-like sleep cycles that can allow you to achieve that nirvana-like feel again.