Sleep trackers

If you’re looking to track your sleep then this guide can help

If you’re interested in examining your sleeping habits, or if you’re wondering whether you’re getting an optimum amount of regular sleep each night, then there are methods and ways to achieve this. Personal sleep tracking is now a common trend, and the technology to aid you with it is now hitting the market. Here, we’ve put together a guide to help you track your sleeping patterns.

In recent years, the market for software and gadgets for sleep tracking has grown at an exponential rate, and there are a number of reasons as to why. More and more people are realising that quality of sleep has a direct link with overall well-being and general health. As most of us now have smartphones, developers have noticed the increasing market and have tried to meet the demand with newer and more sophisticated apps.

Sleep tracking is a form of the ‘quantified self’, the term which describes those who use technology to collect data about themselves and their health. As with all technologies, as time goes on, the price drops as the tech is advanced and consumer demand increases. Sleep tracking, at first, was an expensive and inconvenient affair.

As the tech and ease of use has progressed, millions of us are now using the equipment and software to track everything relating to our daily lives, from productivity to our diets, and now, our sleep.

Knowing about ourselves isn’t something we’ve suddenly become interested in since the boom of smartphones and apps. It dates back to thousands of years ago, though the interest of self-knowledge has undergone an enormous change in the 21st century. Now, each of us has the tools at our disposal to track and analyze our own bodies and see the data in front of us. Studying this data allows us to see where we can make improvements to our health, as well as being able to be rewarded by hitting the targets we’ve set for ourselves.

Numerous health organisations are frequently conducting studies and reporting that millions are suffering from poor sleeping habits. On an large scale, this affects everything from our productivity levels to the number of cars accidents due to people falling asleep at the wheel. It’s even been linked with our obesity crisis. New research shows that sleep trackers like the Apple Watch can detect hypertension and sleep apnea.

Despite all of our knowledge, we know rather little about our own sleep. Science is ever striving to find out more and more about something which all of us do each night. Increasingly, they’re linking proper exercise and a balanced diet with better sleep. They claim that a balanced diet, exercise and good sleep are the three pillars of good health. Thankfully, the technology that’s now at our fingertips can help us study our sleep and work out how we can improve the quality and amount of it that we can get.

The tests that scientists are able to achieve in special conditions are, of course, very different to what we’re able to achieve at home. Scientists are able to use state of the art equipment to study our brain waves and how are body is functioning whilst we’re asleep. The smartphone apps and equipment we purchase are, understandably, far less sophisticated, although they’re still able to give us valuable information that we can collect and use.

The sleep trackers we can use at home are more than adequate for what we need, when trying to track our sleeping habits, and ideally, improve them.

As the market continues to grow, and the companies which meet the demand continue to develop and refine their products, it seems that we’re just at the beginning of the dawn of a new era of sleep tracking. Tech giants such as Google and Apple are increasingly pushing more and more of their health platforms, as it’s seems that a new wave of wearable technologies are upon us. The idea of analysing our own health and sleeping will become more and more mainstream over the following few years.

There are a few questions which can be raised about the long-term validity of such products, however. What happens once we’ve used the technology to help us get into the ultimate sleeping pattern? Would we then still require the use of such technologies?

Whatever happens to the long-term viability of this technology is up for debate, but surely it’s worth it if leads to an increase in greater health benefits for us all.