It is a typical night, and the clock strikes at 2 am. You are tossing, turning, and changing sides and have had timeless stares with the ceiling. You have eventually lost count of the numbers you chanted and finally give in to temptation and decide to check your social media for a few minutes. From what you thought was a harmless few minutes turned out to you reaching the season finale of a show on Netflix. Well, as the day begins to dawn, you realize it is 6 am and finally your eyelids shut to sleep till the later half of the day.
If the above narrative rings a sharp bell in your ears and makes you restless, you are sailing on the same boat and are not alone. According to a study in 2019 from Iowa State University, more than five million Americans have issues getting to sleep each night. Well, with the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, it has been observed that the trends of erratic sleeping patterns have shot up. This might be because people have restricted movement and activities, a reduced sense of commitment to wake up early in the morning, and hence develop a habit of staying up late, which in turn becomes a messed up sleep schedule.
Now, the primary question that arises is the alternatives that can be adapted to reinforce a healthy sleeping lifestyle. One might ponder whether we can employ technology here too for our rescue and the answer is Yes. As surprising as it sounds, the same phone device that distracts you with an alert of a new youtube video at 2 am shall end up being the reason you have a peaceful night. The key factor here is installing certain apps that shall drift you into the right Headspace and sink you into your soft pillows. Whether it is the soothing sound of nature or a melodious narration of bedtime stories, these applications have it all at your comfort!
Amidst the tons of applications, here is a list of the top 10 of them that are experts recommended and prove to be the ideal ones, to begin with.
Best Sleep Apps to Download in 2021
This app demands you to bid farewell to sleepless nights and finally begin your mornings with energy and excitement. With tricks inspired by the US Army, this app is reliable to make you fall asleep within two minutes or less as it employs a scientifically-based method of falling asleep. The variation of male and female voices invokes you into a minimized journey of dozing off. It also features a smart alarm clock and a sleeping timer that are accompanied by statistics to suit the app’s behavior following your body’s algorithm.
The app offers a free trial for a specific period after which a subscription has to be taken to utilize all the wonderful features of voice guidance with calming sounds, smart alarm clock, a sleeping time along with statistics.
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As rightfully the name suggests, the app aims to put your head in the right space. Originally known as a meditation app for any possible situation, it also mind relaxing sleep packages knows as “sleepcasts” which are stories of 45-50 minutes of duration. The audio experience resonates within you and helps you visualize calming scenarios like a moving train or a morning garden stroll. Now for people who do not comply with the idea of stories, Headspace has a plethora of music options you can always listen to, a relaxing wind-down that guides you through falling asleep and deep breathing. This app is successful in engaging in exercises that reduce stress and take control of your anxiety.
On a free subscription, you’ll have access to the first 10 Basics sessions, three sessions of ‘Everyday Headspace’ and the ‘Falling Back to Sleep Wind Down’ session.
With a premium subscription, you’ll enjoy unlimited access to guided meditation exercises for both kids and adults, mental reset sessions, a mindfulness/meditation tracker and the ability to add friends so that you can meditate together, among other features.
This app brings out your inner talents of creating your soundtrack as it allows you to choose from distracting sounds (like thunder, wind, white noise, and even the buzz of a cafe) and mix them to fabricate your perfect environment for you to ease yourself up or sleep. Well, that is not all. If you are using this app while working, it has an advanced timer feature that enables you to merge the soundscapes along with time management strategies that ensure you remain focused.
A basic free version gives you access to only 16 sounds and 15 hours of streaming a day. While, with its pro version, you can experiment with 28 sounds and unlimited streaming, in addition to access to its advanced timer.
Working on the principles of psychological effects of sounds, this application employs psychoacoustics to effectively treat insomnia. With an added advantage of offline working, the app has two dimensions, one called “focuscapes” which has over 100 billion sleep music sequences that equip you to stay alert during the day. The other segment is called “dreamscapes” that have customizable narrations with programmed alarms which help you to sleep and nap. Further, it allows you to set a timer for the duration of a sleep session, so it plays an appeasing dreamscape while you snooze and then later allows you to wake up to a built-in alarm.
With a seven day free trial, you can get access to the “Classic Pzizz” content and features, with only limited choices.
However, the premium app features a hub of 100 billion sequences of sounds to sleep, nap, and wake up. It increasingly personalizes your sleep experience as you use it.
Similar to the usual features of soundscapes and assisted sleep meditation, this application is best suited for techniques of hypnosis and ASMR. To talk in specific, it offers a segment called ‘soothing stories’ by therapeutic hypnotist Dan Jones which utilizes suggestive hypnosis techniques to induce sleep. The combination of experiences ranges from being meditation focused, a six-part bedtime story series, or the reverberations of a warm jacuzzi. The background noise (similar sounds of the rain or ocean) can continue up to 10 hours after the main track finishes.
In its free version, one can avail of ten slumber episodes.
But subscribing to the premium version guarantees unlimited access to the Slumber library along with weekly new stories and meditations with an addition of the ASMR and breath control guided technique functions.
Everything gets better when the name of the application itself matches the emotion you wish to achieve. As rightfully said by Wells, meditation is a solid way to destress before bed so you can sleep through the night, and this application serves all the purposes. Technically it is free, but one requires a subscription to use it, which is worth it when we compare all the amenities it offers. With a multitude of sleep stories (including some narrated by Matthew McConaughey), tranquilizing music, and lessons of gentle movement, Calm provides all the answers to ensure that your apprehensions never collide with your sleep.
The free version consists of a limited number of soundscapes, timed meditation alternatives, the first day of all the multi-day meditation options, and certain sleep stories.
Here, the premium version for a monthly or yearly subscription unlocks the entire library of over 120 sleep stories, timeless hours of guided meditation, master classes, and absolute music tracks.
7. Sleep Cycle
Well, more than assisting you with how to sleep, this app works the best in knowing how well you slept! It is effective for visualizing sleep trends as instead of a programmed alarm, Sleep Cycle monitors your sleep with the help of sound analysis. It also wakes you valuably during your lightest sleep phase so that you wake up feeling cheerful and well-rested. Further, to suit your inquisitiveness, you can compare and glance back at your sleep quality with other users, to record the possible reason for the restlessness.
In its free version, you can get all access to sleep analysis and statistics along with an Apple Health integration.
The premium version gives a deeper insight into your sleeping patterns with information about how the weather affects your sleep along with an analysis of long term sleep trends.
8. 10% Happier
Like the name, this application is equally promising and convincing. If your search for a sleep application is still on its route, 10% Happier is always worth a try. It has a diverse range of meditations that range from three minutes to forty-five minutes that enable you to attain a serene phase and fall asleep. The additional benefit involves an abundance of genres and the facility of professional support by a coach.
The free subscription allows one session while a paid membership offers 350+ guided meditations with features of different kinds along with world-class teachers and personal experience of coaching.
Ever thought about journaling as a way to ease your stress, without the presence of an actual journal? Well, Reflecty brings to you an intelligent journal that provokes you with guided questions and encourages you to organize your thoughts on the events of the previous day. This app acts as a mirror and reflects all your thoughts along with any sort of crisis that you may have encountered. It is a sign of progress when you let go of all the things that bother you and start afresh.
One can create a free account to utilize the trial and create daily entries and also save them to the cloud. With a yearly subscription, extra attributes like unlimited space for writing notes in your daily entries, new daily questions, morning motivations, and the ability to track your progress over time are available.
The very essentials of a satisfactory sleep are now also the name of an application that acts as a sleep tracker for Ios and figures out the reason why you cannot fall asleep. It mirrors your movements and records your moves to trail your sleep stages. This app also provides a comparative platform to determine basic things that might keep you awake; it could be an extra cup of coffee or skipping a workout. The uniqueness of this app is that is works connected with your Apple watch.
On availing the free version of this app, you can procure generic information related to your sleeping habits along with statistics based on the time you spent in the different stages of sleep, i.e. light, REM, and deep.
The entire aspect of sound recording and comparison comes handy when you have the premium version.
To all the people reading this, a blissful night’s sleep and a lively morning are just one click away. Download the app that suits you the best because as rightfully said by Mesut Barazany, “Your future depends on your dreams, so go to sleep.”