Insomnia and other sleep disorders are something that shouldn’t be ignored, as they come with a bevy of short-term and long-term consequences to your health and well-being. And while prescription meds are sometimes an effective temporary solution, they can exacerbate sleep issues over time. Fortunately, there may be ways to improve your sleep without turning to medication. If you’re tired of tossing and turning through the night, try the following drug-free methods: Use smartphone apps, make sure you have a smartphone that can power the apps, and invest in a new mattress.
1. Incorporate Smartphone Apps in Your Routine
Using smartphones—as with TVs, computers and tablets—in the bedroom is known to disrupt sleep. However, there are ways to use your smartphone that can actually improve your sleep if done carefully. For example, there are tons of apps that are designed solely for enhancing sleep. Let’s take a quick look at a few of them:
- Pillow Automatic Sleep Tracker for iPhone tracks and analyzes your sleep trends through your phone or Apple Watch. Via smart technology, the app will wake you at the perfect time in your sleep cycle each morning. Also, it provides personalized advice and soothing sounds to help you achieve quality rest.
- Capture is an iPhone app that provides a platform to record and analyze your dreams. It also has dream-inducing music and reality check methods for lucid dreamers.
- Headspace centers around sleep-aid sounds and guided meditations. The app’s goal is to improve each user’s quantity and quality of sleep.
- SnoreLab is an app for iOS and Android that records your snoring through the night. All you have to do is keep your phone by your bedside, and it analyzes the recordings and provides a Snore Score by morning. Not only can you listen to the recordings, but the app also uses metrics to single out snore trends each night.
2. Make Sure You Have a Quality Phone
Of course, if you’re going to use sleep apps like these, you need to ensure that your smartphone is up to the task. If your phone is outdated, you run the risk of it overloading and crashing in the middle of the night, which can throw a wrench in your sleep routine plan. If necessary, consider upgrading to a new phone. The new iPhone 11 has day-long battery life, which is more than enough capacity for an eight-hour night of sleep. Plus, there are a plethora of apps that are exclusive to iOS.
If you’re not a fan of Apple products, look into the Samsung Galaxy S10 +. This phone also has a great battery life, as well as powerful software that can smoothly run all of your apps.
3. Get a New Mattress
A mattress that has endured too much wear and tear can make it difficult to achieve quality rest through the night. If you shift around all night, wake up with aches and pains, see sagging or lumps in the mattress, or rotating it doesn’t help, it may be time for you to go mattress shopping.
If you determine that you need a new mattress, it’s important to do your research beforehand to ensure you choose the right type. You’ll need to consider your body type and preferred sleep position—side, back and stomach.
Prescription meds are not always the best answer for improving sleep. Look into the wealth of smartphone sleep apps available. If your phone is too old to keep up with the apps you need to use, consider upgrading to a newer model. Also, evaluate your mattress, and research different types if you find that you need a new one. If these methods help you achieve deeper sleep without medication, they’ll be well worth the investment.