Some of the most beneficial health habits fall into the “better easier said than done” category – eating healthy, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep. In the course of a typical day, none of these come easily. In fact, the American Sleep Association reports that about 30% of US adults have at least short-term insomnia.
Luckily for us, modern technology is trying to change that, especially in the mobile phone space.
If you start looking around, you’ll find countless apps to help you sleep. They all take different approaches because different techniques work for different people. For a shortcut, check out this guide to the best apps to help you sleep.
Best Apps to Help You Sleep
Whether your insomnia is a long-term problem or a recent issue, try these handy apps.
As one of the highest-rated sleep aid apps available, Calm takes a very measured approach. It has seven-day programs, 21-day programs, and more to help you gradually normalize your sleep cycle.
On top of sleep assistance, Calm has programs for easing anxiety, procrastination, distraction, and more.
The app is free, but you can buy additional features in you choose.
Massage Map 3D X-Ray
One technique that helps many people is massage therapy for sleep improvement. Regular massages can help you relax and bring your sleep back into a regular rhythm.
The problem is that not everyone can afford consistent professional massages. And unless you have a spouse who’s a licensed massage therapist, massages at home don’t tend to do the trick.
To give your partner a hand, Massage Map 3D X-Ray shows exactly where all the useful pressure points are. It helps him/her identify where to massage based on any discomfort you have, giving you a more productive massage so you can get some z’s.
The $2.99 is well worth saving hundreds or thousands in masseuse visits.
Relax & Sleep Well
One of the most commonly helpful tools for sleep disorders is meditation. If you’re familiar with the practice, you know that meditation can have many different focuses, whether you want to sleep better, gain motivation, focus more, etc.
Relax & Sleep Well is a guided meditation app that primarily focuses on meditation that helps you sleep, but of course, there’s plenty of versatility. The most effective apps to help you sleep should always have customizability so you can mix things up or find what works best for you.
The app is free, and you can purchase premium options if you choose.
You already know the importance of healthy sleep, but for many of us, we think we’re getting a solid eight hours but aren’t feeling rested.
Pillow is an app that figures out that puzzle. Using your phone’s audio, Pillow detects when and how much you’re moving around and even detects your breath sounds to see how much quality sleep you’re getting.
By using these measures, Pillow can also track which stages of sleep you’re in and for how long. Using this, the app can set off your alarm when you’re in the lightest stages of sleep. You’ll wake up more easily and you’ll arise feeling rested and refreshed.
If you have an Apple Watch, Pillow can now work with your watch as well for better results.
Naturespace: Relax Dream Sleep
Nature sounds are among the oldest ways to make sleep come more easily. Naturespace is specifically used for this purpose, letting you customize your sleep soundtrack.
Like many apps to help you sleep, Naturespace is free and comes with a preliminary set of sounds, but if you have more specific tastes, you can purchase additional options as well.
Twilight/Night Mode Browser
One of the most common modern tips to sleep better is to reduce your blue light exposure before bedtime. Blue light is emitted from most screens we use, like televisions, cell phones, computers, and tablets.
There’s evidence that blue light decreases your levels of natural melatonin, a hormone that helps you sleep.
But when you have a busy schedule and can’t afford two hours of screen-free time, sometimes you have to look for other options in the form of apps to help you sleep.
For Android users, Twilight is a blue light filtering app that lets you use your phone, tablet, or another device without lowering your melatonin. For iOS users, Night Mode Browser does the same.
If you’re a chronic desktop user, there’s a similar program for laptops and desktops, called F.lux.
Sleep Pillow White Noise Sounds
Many people have difficulty sleeping without some background noise. But if you sleep with the television on, the uneven volume can interfere with your sleep, not to mention that pesky blue light.
White noise machines have been used as an alternative for decades, but not everyone has room on their nightstand for yet another device. Instead, Sleep Pillow White Noise Sounds does exactly what it sounds – provides even-keeled, soothing sounds to lull you to sleep.
Like many apps to help you sleep, this app lets you choose your favorite sounds. But it has some unique white noise choices, like washing machines, rainfall, and more.
Plus, at just $1.99, this app is much cheaper than a white noise machine.
Of all the apps to help you sleep, this one might have the most obvious name, but it’s actually rather unique. Sleep Better tracks your sleep quality like many other apps, but it also tracks your other daily habits as well.
The app then picks up patterns by analyzing your daily activities alongside your sleep quality. It will tell you if you sleep better on days with certain amounts of exercise, days when you ate more or less of certain foods, and more.
Everything you do throughout the day can impact your sleep quality, but it’s not always easy to figure out how. The Sleep Better points out the patterns, and all you have to do is follow them.
Yoga for Insomniacs
Exercise and stress both affect your ability to sleep. Fortunately, yoga can help with both of them at the same time.
Yoga for Insomniacs is an app that focuses primarily on Hatha Yoga – a variety that’s ideal for reducing stress and promoting relaxation. It has a variety of different routines to try, so you can mix it up or find your favorite flows.
Like many of these apps to help you sleep, Yoga for Insomniacs does have a small upfront cost ($2.99), but compare that to professionally guided yoga classes and it’s the bargain of the century.
Likely one of the most varied apps to help you sleep, Sleepio is highly science-based. It’s the brainchild of Professor Colin Espie, Sleepio uses a variety of different sleep techniques so you, the user, can find the one that works best for you.
Sleepio primarily uses Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, or CBT. CBT is a collection of techniques to help you relax and sleep more steadily.
While most apps to help you sleep are short-term solutions for restless nights, Sleepio is designed with insomnia sufferers in mind. It’s a method for long-term sleep improvement that helps each user regulate their sleep cycle and ultimately enjoy the long-term benefits of healthy sleep.
Simple Habit – Meditation
As we mentioned above, meditation is an exceptional technique for people whose stress and restlessness is interfering with their ability to sleep. But not everyone has time for a standard session of meditation on a daily basis…especially people whose busy schedules are contributing to their stress levels.
Simple Habit is based on the idea that starting with small changes can offer great health benefits if you’re consistent.
This app is full of five-minute meditation exercises. You can choose your meditations based on what symptoms you want to reduce (anxiety, lack of focus, etc.). You also have choices based on what’s happening in your life at the time.
Fireplace Live HD
As discussed earlier, white noise is a popular way to fight the power of silence, block out disruptive background noise, and help you get to sleep.
But there are many types of white noise, and one that some people find particularly soothing is the sound of a fireplace. It’s not exactly fire marshal-approved to have an open flame burning while you’re asleep, but the Fireplace Live HD app is a much safer solution.
You can choose a variety of fireplace sounds based on your preferences. And unlike leaving the television on with a streaming digital fireplace, this app doesn’t emit as much sleep-disturbing blue light because it uses your own phone.
Getting a Better Night’s Sleep
Your sleep length and sleep quality affect nearly every aspect of your health, not to mention your happiness and your performance at work or at school. But between busy schedules, stress levels, and often unknown factors, sleep doesn’t always come easily no matter how exhausted you are.
The apps above are just a few tools you can use to improve your sleep and your health. But our entire site is dedicated to helping you get a better night’s sleep so explore our blog for more healthy sleeping tips.