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Fitness Trackers and Sleep Tracking

Posted by Dr. Danny P. Malone on Feb 8, 2017 8:30:00 AM

With your fitness program you’re running, biking, swimming, climbing stairs, and maybe even getting up from your desk throughout the work day. It’s now time to give consideration to a fitness tracker to measure your effort and track your progress. 

In my last blog post, I provided insight into “Fitbit Pros and Cons.”  They can be chock full of features, depending on model and brand. One of those features is sleep tracking. This can be a useful addition to all the other features of a fitness tracker.

What is Sleep Tracking?

man sleepingIf you’re one of the lucky few who sleeps through the night, every night, then you’re probably not aware that many of us have challenges getting a good night’s sleep. This can be very disruptive to your daily performance, as well as adversely impact your overall health. 

Tracking your sleep can provide insights into what’s breaking up your sleep patterns along with advice on how to improve your sleep. A full-blown sleep lab performs a polysomnography test. This test provides detailed information on your brain activity, muscle and eye movement, as well as heart rhythm. 

Fitness Tracker Sleep Tracking

A fitness tracker can provide some of this information, depending on the tracker. There are also dedicated sleep trackers that only measure your sleep patterns. Here’s what’s possible:

  • Tracking Sleep Patterns. This includes measuring the amount of light, deep, REM (rapid eye movement), and wake time.
  • Heart Rate. This measures your heart rate throughout the night.
  • Breathing. This includes your rate of breathing and your snoring.
  • Movement. Are you tossing and turning? Trackers can tell you exactly how much. 
  • Environment. This includes sensors for temperature, humidity, light, and noise

A fitness tracker can also provide a smart alarm to wake you during a light stage of sleep, rather than when you’re in deep sleep. This can help you wake up more refreshed. It can also provide music or sounds during your sleep, think waves washing up on the shore. 

Apps for Results

With all fitness trackers, there’s an accompanying app for your smart phone and/or computer. Within the app you’ll find all the sleep tracking information from the list above. They can provide some pretty impressive graphs. Making sense of all that it the trick.

Some trackers and their apps can provide comparison of your results to other users. Several also provide sleep coaching advice that can be very helpful. In addition, there are a few that compare your food and particularly your caffeine intake with your sleeping patterns over time. That can provide useful in understanding what’s disrupting your sleep patterns.

What’s Next?

I hope that gave you a good overview of how fitness trackers can help provide insight into your sleep patterns. We’re here to help with your overall vision health, which can be affected by your physical health and your sleep patterns. 

Use our contact form or call us at 972-612-2099. We can evaluate your vision and provide just the right solution based on our expertise and years of experience.

Disclaimer: The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions. 

sitting is the new smoking

Topics: health, fitness trackers