This time of year is usually the time when we make a stocktake of the technological advancements of the year behind us.

We’ve seen giant leaps in computer and phone technology – from self-driving trucks and tweaks in facial recognition software to 360 degrees selfies.

But, here at JCount, we’re more about then the bells and whistles. We believe it’s time to re-evaluate the ways we’re using technology to truly make our lives better. In today’s post, we explore what we believe is largely neglected area of technology use – improving our sleep habits.

We’ve taken the time to put together a list of 3 sleep gadgets that can change the way you get your ZZZs – from simple gadgets like sleep masks to more intricate technology, like noise-cancelling headphones or wake-up lights.

Below is our list of Top 5 ways to improve your sleep by using some nifty gadgets.

  1. Making sure you’re sleeping right in the first place

Before you even think about moving on to craft a perfect sleep routine, it’s crucial to understand what good sleep means.

The most common misconception is the good old “hour” rule, most of us believe that simply getting the hours means you’re sleeping well. That’s not where you’re self-evaluation should end…not with the technology we have today.

Long story short – good sleep means finding the right balance between sleep phases – enter sleep trackers.

Why use a sleep tracker?

Simply because we have no way of knowing what exactly goes on in those 7 or 8 hours.

Sleep trackers available today are tweaked to track every “event,”  from the balance between sleep phases to episodes of sleep apnea.

Getting one of these nifty little helpers is a must if you want to craft any changes in your sleep routine, especially for people with sleep disorders.

After all, you can’t fix a problem before you know what it is.

  1. Cancelling-out the noise

If we had to choose one sleep gadget that has seen the most significant improvements, we’d go with noise-cancelling headphones and sleep ear buds.

Why use noise-cancelling headphones?

We won’t even go into the matter whether music and sounds help with sleep problems. The evidence is mixed and, the way things are now, we don’t expect a definitive answer anytime soon. With that said, it all comes down what works for you – whether it’s just cancelling out the noise to sleep in silence or listening to relaxing music or ASMR.

We expected the release of Bose Quiet Comfort 35, series 2 this year…alas

Bose set new standards in the industry with the release of Quiet Comfort 35 Bluetooth headphones. If we set the price aside for a moment, these seem to be the best noise-cancelling headphones out there.

Choosing a budget-friendly option

Active noise cancellation is still an expensive pleasure, especially in wireless Bluetooth based sets like the Bose we mentioned above.

Following an email interview with Bob Ozment, the Editor in Chief of TheSleepStudies.com, we can say that there are indeed some good cheaper options out there, like the PAWW 3. You can see what their testing and reviews showed to be the best noise-cancellation headphones in lower price ranges here.

What we expect this year

We expected to see the release of Series 2 from Bose Quiet Comfort 35 this year (especially after some images of the product were leaked)  but it didn’t happen. We’re excited to see it next year.

  1. Wake-up lights

If you know that feeling of waking up at 5am while it’s still dark out you know that it takes a while to fully wake up.

The reason for that is that our body still makes sleep hormones while it’s dark outside.

In this scenario, you can do your brain a huge favor by mimicking the sunrise with a wake up light. Alarm clocks with wake up lights start glowing a light that closely resembles that of the sun before the alarm goes off.

It’s a great way to “tell” you brain that it’s time to wake up and shorten the time you feel groggy after getting up.

Outro

Tech is seeing strong leaps every month.

It’s time to use more of it to improve our health and look beyond the new ways to take selfies or play video games.

It’s 2018, let’s sleep right this year.