Up until about three years ago, I refused to believe sleep apps (or wellness apps in general) were anything more than tech men and women trying to capitalize on the renewed movement known as “Mindfulness”.
Now, of course, I see that they’re more than just a fad, there are legitimate ideas and whole ideologies within the wellness and mindfulness movements that have been around since the 1960s and 1970s; for that reason alone, I should’ve given them more of a chance…
But it was hard to take seriously.
Not only that, where any of us to take it truly seriously before society as whole decided we would, you’re really going out on a limb - and do you want to do that just based on hearsay?
If you’re a sane person, your answer is no.
The reality is, apps are here to stay, and besides wanting to make a quick buck, a lot of health apps have their heart in the right place (around the top right of an iPhone’s switchboard - just kidding).
Below is a list of wellness apps I’ve compiled based on a few different factors, including general success rate, popularity, and ease of use.
Have a look below and see which suits your life the most.
One last piece of advice: Don’t judge the names. Google sounded silly but now look.
6) Relax Melodies
Pretty self-explanatory, which is great for anyone uncertain about what this product is or how it works.
The app works on iOS and Android. It’s full of different sounds (or “melodies”) that help calm you. Play them as you go through your nightly routine (brushing teeth, flossing, making the bed, cleaning your room), and experience its unique benefits.
If that’s not enough, some people leave their smartphones plugged in overnight and play the sounds throughout their sleep.
A really attractive aspect of Relax Melodies comes in the form of its community. There is a Relax Melodies community that contributes new sound combinations, meaning other users are able to tailor their experience and what works for them, and then make it available to all other users.
In essence, it begins with the app but slowly becomes a community-energized service.
Okay, this is the kind of name to which I referred above. Don’t judge the fact that it sounds like a rejected Pokemon or a medicine tablet from a futuristic Tom Cruise movie, it works.
The idea behind Digipill is it works as simple as taking a pill. Just pop on the app and receive sleep benefits without doing any work.
Do you have insomnia? Don’t worry, Digipill is here to help. What makes the app unique besides its uniquely terrible name is each type of “pill” (downloadable 30-minute recording) is meant to treat something different.
If you have insomnia, try one type of pill. If you’re just looking to get a quick power nap on lunch, or before heading out for an evening with your partner, give a different pill a try.
Everything is very well organized, in terms of usability and “dosage”.
The one catch is it’s not entirely free. Like any pill, it begins free but soon makes you pay to get more of what’s made you addicted to it.
Living with and using Digipill is a dangerous game. It’s as effective as it is addictive. It’s up to you whether or not the price is worth a good sleep.
If it’s not, there’s always Noisli.
Noisli is not free, which I understand is an issue when there are so many decent apps that are free; however, like any good paid service, there’s a reason you must pay for it. Noisli not only allows you to personalize a collection of sounds, it can be used for activities outside of sleep, such as general relaxation and yoga.
The reason this is relevant to an article about sleep apps is both of those activities improve your quality of sleep.
If you exercise and work your body well, or if you relax (your brain and body) prior to going to bed, working with the app while in bed will create a greater impact.
I’m tempted to tell you to neglect this one purely because of how bad its name is, but there are important factors to consider with Pzizz.
For example, taps into something called psychoacoustics, which, according to Merriam-Webster is “a branch of science dealing with the perception of sound, the sensations produced by sounds, and the problems of communication”.
The way this is applied to sleep therapy is through the choice of sounds. The only sounds made available on the app are those proven to improve sleep and work in the realm of psychoacoustics.
Pzizz isn’t just a flashy (bad) name, it’s an option to work with a legitimate scientific method in trying to treat a legitimately troubling problem: insomnia, and general lack of sleep.
2) Sleep Cycle
Sleep Cycle. One of the first mainstream sleep apps.
The great thing about Sleep Cycle is it keeps track of your sleeping patterns over a period of multiple nights, and after evaluating the way you sleep, can be programmed to gently wake you from a deeper sleep whenever you choose.
It’s an alarm clock that works with your body slowly, instead of jolting you awake.
The best part? It’s free.
All you need to do is put in a little bit of time and effort to see what works best for you, and once you’ve got that under control, you can head to sleep knowing Sleep Cycle is there to take care of your nightly rest.
1) Sleep Time
Sleep Time is the final entry! It’s also free.
Frankly, it contains the best of the rest of the apps on this list. It’s software learns to wake you at the best time, based on your scheduled necessary hours, and it records results so you can understand how to better your nightly routine.
Obviously, all of these work best in conjunction with a weighted blanket. Consider checking them out!
You don’t need to worry about the cost as a lot of these great apps are inexpensive and or free, so the only thing stopping you from a better sleep is a willingness to try!