the top and sides of an iPhone 3G S.

Great gadgets to help get a good night sleep. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Generally, when you hear about gadgets and getting a good night’s sleep at the same time, it is highlighting how gadgets are making it difficult to get the sleep we need.  However, there is another side to the technological advances that have made all these gadgets so critical to our everyday existence.  In some cases, gadgets can actually help you get the sleep you need.  Here are a few gadgets that you can use to help address the different problems keeping you up counting sheep rather than racking up zzz’s.


1.     Wake Up with WakeMate

During the course of each night, you move through several different phases of sleep and within these phases there are times when it is more optimal to wake up.  WakeMate, and other sleep gadgets like it, use technology to gauge where you are in your sleep cycle and then set off an alarm to wake you up the most optimal time during a 20 minute window you designate.  This gadget is a wristband that you wear while you are sleeping that tracks your sleep phase and patterns throughout the night.  Wakemate also uploads your specific sleep data which enables you to look at how well you are sleeping over time.   This gadget costs about $60.00.  For more information, visit their website.


2.     Hire Zeo to be Your Sleep Coach

Zeo uses a headband to provide much of the same functionality as WakeMate but the focus of the Zeo is on improving overall sleep quality and quantity rather than ensuring an optimal wake-up time.  Zeo tracks and stores data about your sleep patterns throughout the night and enables you to upload and analyze your data.  By tracking different factors like exercise, medication, and caffeine that can help or hinder your sleep, Zeo helps you identify patterns of behavior that are impacting how much sleep you get and the quality of that sleep.  The addition of the “sleep coach” function, which uses your data to recommend tips and strategies for improving your overall sleep makes this gadget even more useful.  The basic model Zeo cost about $100.00 and can be purchased from their website.


3.     Let Lark Wake You Up Without a Sound

Lark does the same basic thing as WakeMate, only silently.  This is the perfect gadget for people who have partners with a different schedule as it makes it easier to wake one person up without a blaring alarm waking everyone up.  Lark is a wristband that vibrates to wake you up at the right time rather than waking you up with any kind of sound.  Lark is controlled by an iPhone app, which limits its use to iPhone owners but it also tracks and records sleep data to help you see where you are struggling.  Lark costs around $189 and can be purchased at Apple stores.  For more information, visit the website.

Gadgets can be great, but if you aren’t getting the sleep you need and consistently struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep, talk to your doctor and make sure your sleep problems aren’t the result of a sleep disorder.

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