Do Sleep Trackers Really Help?
Submitted by New Jersey Snoring Solutions on Sun 06/23/2019 - 09:00
Sleep trackers are devices used to collect information about people’s nightly sleep patterns, the goal of which is to help people learn more about their sleep behavior so they can get a better night’s rest.
But how effective are sleep trackers? Does the information they gather really help people to improve the quality of their sleep?
The team at New Jersey Sleep Apnea Solutions weighs in below.
How Sleep Trackers Work
A wide variety of sleep trackers are available today. Some you can wear as wristbands while others are non-wearable and you can either slide them under your mattress or place them at your bedside.
The data collected by sleep trackers include the following:
- Heart rate
- How long it takes you to fall asleep
- The amount of sleep you get each night
- The quality of your sleep (i.e., how much tossing, turning, and waking you do)
- How long you spend during each sleep phase (stages 1-4 and rapid eye movement or REM)
- Environmental factors, such as the temperature of your bedroom as well as the amount of light and noise
- Lifestyle factors, including your stress levels, caffeine intake, and diet and exercise habits.
The way sleep trackers gather information is by measuring your body movement.
Wearable sleep trackers measure body movement in a process called actigraphy, which relies on an actigraph sensor worn around your wrist. Non-wearable trackers, on the other hand, leverage echolocation, a reflection technique that tracks your breathing using low-power radio waves.
Are Sleep Trackers Helpful?
If you’re primarily interested in knowing the amount of sleep you get each night, sleep trackers are a reliable means of reporting when you fall asleep and wake up, and the amount of time you spend asleep each night.
However, information about the length of time you spend in each sleep phase may not be as reliable. To get more precise data, you would need to participate in a sleep study conducted by a qualified sleep specialist
New developments are continuously being made with sleep technology, and the more you know about your sleep patterns, the more you can improve your sleep quality.
To learn more about how you can improve your sleep, especially if you have sleep apnea, call or email the team at New Jersey Sleep Apnea Solutions.