When thinking about your health and wellbeing, sleep should be a factor right at the top of your list. While you are asleep, your body goes into what I like to consider as “repair mode” as it starts to recover from your day’s activity and recharge itself ready for the next day. It will start to heal any damaged cells and also boosts your immune system – hence why you might start to feel ill if you are not getting enough sleep. The importance of a good night’s sleep is invaluable to our health.
A Review of the S+ by ResMed
To be honest, my sleep pattern has always been fairly good. But I think that is purely because I am one of those people that need quite a lot of sleep to be able to function. So most of the time I end up going to sleep at around 10-ish and waking up at half 7, which is a good 9-ish hours. You are recommended to have between 7-9 hours a night, so I am definitely nearing the far end. I definitely need to be more careful about oversleeping…
For the past few weeks, I have been using the S+ by ResMed* to monitor my sleep. It is a device that you plug in on your bedside table and connects to your phone through an app via bluetooth. I found it super easy to setup and get started as all I needed to do was download the app and setup a Bluetooth connection to the device. Then it was all good to go!
The device works by monitoring your breathing. So on the app you can actually see your breathing rate shown through a live graph. It can be a little weird at first, but it is actually quite interesting to track. Using a non-contact sleep sensor, it can measure not only your breathing but also body movements throughout the night. It will analyse light, noise and temperature levels in your bedroom to help ensure you have a good atmosphere for sleeping. All of these factors are tracked and synced to your app, so you can keep track of each night’s sleep.
When you know you are about to go to sleep you have to fill in a really quick set of questions such as “How many caffeinated drinks did you have today?” and “How much exercise did you do today?”. Once you have filled in this you click “Good Night” and the device will start to monitor your breathing rate. At this point, you can also see the temperature and light levels of your room.
The mind clear option gives you the chance to jot down anything you need to remember in the morning or record a quick voice memo. The idea is that you clear your mind before going to bed, so you have a better chance at having a solid night’s sleep. I really like this idea as I often end up over-thinking things before bed, so it is good to have the chance to get them all out and completely relax before going to bed.
You also have to option to set a smart alarm – one of my favourite features of the S+! It basically wakes you up over a period of time, rather than at one set time. You can choose the type of alarm to play, so when it gets to the right time the alarm starts to play very softly and gradually builds up to become louder. I cannot express how much nicer this is to hear in the morning, rather than a blaring iPhone alarm!
Tracking your sleep
On the homepage of the app, you can keep track of your previous night’s sleep score. This is a score out of 100 calculated from the percentage of deep, REM, disruption time, onset and light sleep you had throughout the night. I really like that it breaks all this down for you, making it easy to see how well you actually slept in the night. Thinking I was quite a good sleeper, I was under the impression that I would get some quite good results after each nights sleep but was left shocked by the results. I found out that I can actually be quite restless in the night.
I really like the way they each night’s sleep can be viewed as a graph by the hour of each night so you can see when you were most restless. In one of my tracked periods of sleep, I saw that I was restless at five different points in one night, so no wonder I was feeling quite tired when I woke up that day!
With each night’s sleep, you get a little tip at the bottom to suggest ways you can improve that night’s sleep. For example, on one of the nights when I didn’t get as much sleep as I needed, it was suggested that I take a walk or exercise before going to bed as this can help you sleep more soundly and for longer. These tips are really great for giving advice tailored to your night’s sleep.
Final thoughts on the S+
The S+ is actually a really nifty device that I am definitely going to continue using. I find it so interesting seeing how well I slept each night and what I could do to improve. If I am honest, there is only one negative to the S+ by ResMed and that is the price. It costs £129.95 (£99 atm on Amazon!) to purchase, which is a little steep and something that is perhaps a little out of my budget. However, I have dramatically improved my sleep and found that I am not so restless in the night as I have been optimising my room environment through the tips given. I have been telling anyone that will listen how good this device has been for my sleep, and everyone has been really interested in hearing more!
Top tips for getting a good nights sleep
If you want to improve your sleep, there are a couple of top tips I like to follow to ensure I am getting the best night’s rest possible.
Have a routine
It might take you back to feeling like a child, but have a routine and stick to it. Set yourself a schedule of when you are going to sleep and when you are going to wake up. Having a schedule like this will ensure that you are getting a full 7-9 hours sleep as you start to regulate your body clock.
Meditation is all about relaxation. Try putting on some soothing music and lying in bed. Concentrate on your breathing as your chest moves up and down with the intake and outtake of each breath. This will completely relax your mind and help you get ready to transition into a deep sleep.
Avoid electronic devices before bed
Hands up who goes to check their phone before bed, then checks the time and it is an hour later? Me! It can be difficult not to fall into the social media trap before bed. I always find that my head feels totally overwhelmed and completely un-relaxed when I end up doing this. So try to give your eyes and head a rest by skipping the social media checks.
I have recently started back at the gym, and as a lot of my classes seem to end at around half 9, I always end up coming home and feeling absolutely shattered. But at least this means that I can fall into a deep sleep and quickly!
What are your top tips for getting a good nights sleep?
*I was kindly gifted the S+ by ResMed to review, but all thoughts are my own.