We can never overstate the value of a good night’s sleep for the metabolism of the body. But the trouble is, what happens when you feel tired even 6 hours of sleep. With some attention to your sleep habits can hint towards the lying cause. Loud snoring, waking up in the middle of the night with a dry throat, choking sensation during sleep, restlessness, headaches in the morning, and drowsiness throughout the day are possible signs of sleep apnea.
What is sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea is a severe medical condition where breathing pauses occur during sleep. Loud snores usually accompany the condition. There exist three types of apnea that are dangerous to health: Obstructive sleep apnea, central sleep apnea, complex sleep apnea syndrome. Sleep apnea can occur in any sleep cycle, but it is most common and worst during the REM stage. The association between REM and apnea may be caused due to reduced muscle mass in the upper airway. People often ignore sleep apnea unless it manifests more severe problems. In its worst state, apnea can even hamper memory formation and lead to brain damage.
How is sleep apnea diagnosed?
Obstructive sleep apnea, the most common form of apnea, is usually diagnosed by monitoring heart rate, lung, and brain activity, breathing patterns, body movements during sleep, and oxygen levels in the blood during sleep. But, this method cannot be used by the mass to obtain a diagnosis. To solve this problem, ResApp Health Limited has developed a service that can enable your mobile phones to deliver a conclusive diagnosis.
Can you detect sleep apnea at home?
In order to get a clear insight into the symptoms, mobile phones can come handy. When people seek a diagnosis of apnea, they are hooked on to a network of wires running across the body and are asked to sleep in a foreign room where a device tracks their breathing pattern, body movement, and other data. Not to be discouraging, but that seems to be a bit of a hassle. It might even disrupt an otherwise fit person’s sleeping ability. Smartphones with sleep apnea apps can come to the rescue for such a problem. It performs a similar test and records the data within the comfort of your home as you sleep in your bed.
How does an apnea app work?
An apnea app can work perfectly well within a person’s bedroom setting. You can keep your smartphone on the bedside table, hooked on to the charger. The app changes a smartphone into an active SONAR device and works along the way a bat navigates. It emits an inaudible signal that is reflected from the body. The smartphone records the signals reflected by the body. These signals can be interpreted into data of the abdominal breathing movement and other limb movements. When compared with a healthy sleeping signal, it can unravel whether one has sleep apnea or not.
How accurate are sleep apnea apps?
The technology and method used in the app were tested in a sleep lab where the smartphone was placed with the apnea app running on a nearby table. The recording from the app was compared with the OSA polysomnography test. The apnea app had an accuracy of about 98% when the test was performed on about 40 people.
Popular apnea apps
Even if a medical practitioner can only provide a clinical diagnosis, these apps can help people to track their sleep patterns, heart rate, and collect data. This data can then be analyzed by sleep therapists to give a final diagnosis. Also, the app can be used to gauge how effective your treatment for sleep apnea is.
The apps are available for both IOS and Android users. One trip to the AppStore or Google Play Store can provide up to a hundred apps that cater to your sleep health needs. Here is a list of the topmost user-friendly and useful apps that may prove to be a lifesaver.
Sleep Tracker 24/7 app
Sleep Tracker 24/7 is only available for iPhone users. Unlike other body vital tracking apps, Sleep Tracker always remains on and is a complete activity tracker. It means that the user does not have to switch it on before going to sleep. Instead, it works throughout the day. As a result, the app doubles as a sleep pattern app as well as an overall health tracker app. It has “Get Active” alerts, smart alarms, and power nap reminders.
- Measures resting heart rate and correlates with sleep quality, tracks advance sleep cycle.
- The most accurate sleep cycle alarm for iPhone.
- Set the alarm for optimal power-naps.
“Easy installation, easy app to navigate, very useful data to have. The bad reviews were written by the technologically impaired with inadequate smartphones “
This app requires a stable net connection, which is usually possible through a router only. People with mobile networks should check this before use.
ResMed myAir app
ResMed myAir is available in two variants, ResMed myAir and ResMed Airmini. ResMed Airmini comes with a compatible device that acts as a separate recorder and sleep tracker that can be connected with the smartphone through Bluetooth technology. MyAir is also available for your computer as well. MyAir rates your sleep experience based on four contributing factors. MyAir also offers Personalised messages and therapeutic coaching to improve your sleep.
- The app allows you to share your data with your therapist or relevant people.
- The therapist can set up the settings on your device to give mode effective sleep experience.
- Receive congratulatory messages when you pass sleep milestones.
- Access an educational library with sleep-related literature.
“The app is easy to use, has a simple layout, and does have some pretty neat features such as turning your machine on/off via your phone, checking mask fit, etc. It has made my life much better. I do, however believe it could be made five stars by addressing the following. I find the app won’t shut off when not using it, which drains the battery.”
Some users have condemned the recent update saying that it has disrupted their previous settings and records.
Snore Lab app
SnoreLab is one of a kind app that is innovative and popular among its users.
SnoreLab records, measures, and analyses snoring patterns and aim to discover personalized ways to reduce it. The app is quite simple by setting it on record next to the bed.
The app is designed with a technology to provide a snore score to find out how loudly and exactly when one snores during sleep.
SnoreLab allows its users to log in to their accounts and access snoring remedies that support their needs.
- Measures snoring intensity (Snore Score), compares snoring across nights
- Assesses the effectiveness of any snoring remedies that you use
- Measures the impact of factors such as drinking alcohol on snoring
- Records sleep statistics
- Can email sound files
“This app is great to track how much you snore. The distinction between light, loud, and epic snoring may not be accurate depending on how far you are from your phone, what side you’re laying on, and if there are other noises in your room. That being said, it does a good job at being able to pick up your snoring. It was useful in letting my doctor know how much I snore on a regular basis prior to doing a sleep study.”
The app has moved on to a monthly subscription from a one-time purchase system.
Sleep ++ is available on for IOS users and is connected with the apple watch. It offers a report about how long one has slept, the intensity and quality of their sleep. It has an automatic mode that tracks when an individual is asleep. This way, one does have to set the app manually right before they go to sleep. It is a helpful feature for people who do not have a specific sleep cycle.
- It provides a possible explanation for sleep graphs and other readings.
- Reminders and sleeping tips for building a better schedule, set goals for sleep habits
- Compares how often your sleep has been interrupted for loo breaks.
- Bedtime consistency scores show how methodically one has been hitting the bed.
“This is the first app I tried due to the positive reviews. I’m not overly impressed with it. I have an infant and am awake and walking around multiple times per night, but this app says I’m sleeping deeply through those periods.”
The app has inevitable glitches that prevent it from identifying when a person is awake. People have complained about inconsistent recording associated with specific models of Apple watch.