Sleep is directly proportional to the overall health of every individual.
Every individual needs enough sleep to maintain their health and function optimally. You can say that sleeping right is as crucial as eating and exercising daily.
Whether you are looking at sleep from health or any other point of view, you will see that there are plenty of benefits attached to it. If a person is not getting enough sleep, you will instantly notice changes in that individual’s behavior.
On the other hand, if you are getting adequate sleep, you will see yourself functioning in the best way possible. Studies have also shown that getting adequate sleep is necessary for everyday life.
Now, let us look through some key benefits of sleep that are visible in every individual’s overall health.
Benefits of Adequate Sleep
Better Concentration and Productivity: Sleep is directly linked to various brain functions like productivity, concentration, cognition, etc. When you receive enough sleep in day-to-day life, you will be able to focus productively on your work or any task at hand.
Stronger Immune System: When you get enough sleep, you will see your body recovering, repairing, and regenerating at the right pace. Better sleep quality will help your body fight infection and diseases very easily. Studies are still going on to link sleep with the body’s immune system and find out the exact mechanism.
Depression Prevention: Sleep and mental health are directly related to each other. According to a study in JAMA Psychiatry, it had been found that lack of sleep was a major contributing factor in deaths by suicide over ten years. There are several studies conducted to relate sleep and depression. It is noted that people with sleep disorders like insomnia are more likely to have depression down the line.
Better Athletic Performance: National Sleep Foundation conducted a study to relate sleep with athletic performance. As per this study, it was found that an average adult’s adequate sleep length is of 7 to 9 hours. You can expect more benefits with 10 hours of sleep every night if you are an athlete. It is as essential as taking enough nutrients and calories every single day.
The main reason is that the body recovers pretty fast during sleep. Other benefits of adequate sleep are more energy, better mental functioning, better performance intensity, and faster speed. This will turn out to be a huge benefit for your athletic performance.
These are some of the key benefits of getting adequate sleep in everyday life.
What is Sleep Quality?
Sleep Quality is a measurement for indicating how well you are sleeping every time. Based on your sleep quality, you will know whether you are sleeping restfully or not. Sleep quality is a bit difficult to measure compared to your sleep quantity.
Four parameters are generally assessed to get the right answer when it comes to sleep quality. Let us know more about these parameters.
- Sleep Latency – Sleep Latency tells you about the time it takes for you to fall asleep after getting into bed. If you can fall asleep within 30 minutes of going to bed, it suggests your sleep quality is good.
- Sleep Waking – This will tell you how often you wake up in the middle of the night. If you are waking up frequently, then that is going to hamper your sleep cycle as well as reduce your sleep quality. If you wake up only once or not at all during the night, that suggests good quality sleep.
- Wakefulness – This parameter measures the amount of time you are awake in the middle of the night after you first drift off to sleep. If you record 20 minutes or less wakefulness during the night, your sleep quality is good.
- Sleep Efficiency – Sleep Efficiency is the measurement of time that you actually spend sleeping while being in bed. To see optimal health benefits and come under people with good quality sleep, you need 85% or more sleep efficiency.
What are REM, Non-REM, and Deep Sleep Cycles?
When you are asleep, you cycle between REM, Non-REM, and Deep Sleep.
REM stands for rapid eye movement. All three are different phases during your sleep.
First, you will enter the Non-REM sleep phase. In the Non-REM sleep phase, there are three different stages that last for 5-15 minutes each. Before reaching the REM sleep phase, you will have to go through all three stages.
Stage 1 – Even though your eyes are closed, it is pretty easy to wake you up in this stage. This stage lasts only for 5-10 minutes.
Stage 2 – This is where you are in the light sleep stage. At this time, your body temperature starts dropping, and your heart rate slows down. Now, your body is trying to get ready for deep sleep. This stage lasts for 10-25 minutes.
Stage 3 – This is the deep sleep stage where it gets harder to wake you up. If someone can wake you up in this stage, you won’t feel good and relaxed for a few minutes.
When you are in the deep stages of Non-REM sleep, your body will start repairing itself and strengthening the immune system.
You can expect REM Sleep to happen after 90 minutes of falling asleep. Your heart rate will be irregular and faster during this phase. Your body will be inactive, but your eyes’ irises will rapidly move during the REM sleep phase.
The first stage of REM sleep will last for approximately 10 minutes. Later on, the stages will start getting longer, and the final stage might even last up to an hour. As your brain is highly active in this phase, you will get intense and vivid dreams. REM Sleep is considered to be the best one for learning and memory.
People often confuse themselves between REM sleep and deep sleep. Your body will be able to enter the deep sleep phase only after 30-45 minutes of falling asleep.
During the phase of deep sleep, your body will show changes and not the brain. Your heart rate will be regular, and your breathing will be slow. The body heals itself in the best way during this phase by replacing cells, healing wounds, and building muscle tissues.
Usually, you won’t get any dreams during this sleep. If you wake up by mistake from a deep sleep, you will feel disoriented for some time. The deep sleep phase lasts for 1-2 hours, which is like a quarter of your total sleep time.
Now, let us look at some of the best sleep meditation apps that will help you improve your sleep quality and clear your mind before going to sleep.
Headspace is a bundle of everything you might need, from guides for meditation and stress management to sleep management and mind-body health. The app believes in the concept that if your mind is clear, then you can get a peaceful and restorative sleep.
Headspace helps you put your mind and body to sleep with relaxing sleep sounds. You will notice a considerable difference in the quality of your sleep after you start using this app. The free features are limited, and you will have to take a subscription to get access to all the premium meditation programs for stress management, sleep management, and more.
There are plenty of short and on-the-go meditation programs that you can try out on Headspace. The excellent thing is that you can find the app on both Android and iOS. Headspace is the best sleep meditation app that everyone should try out.
Muse 2 is a multi-sensor device that will help you meditate like never before. It will provide you with real-time feedback on your breathing, heart rate, body movement, and brain activity. This will make it easier for you to develop a consistent meditation practice.
Muse headband will translate your complete mental activity into guiding sounds of weather. This will help you stay focused and calm. If your mind is busy, then there will be stormy weather sounds. On the contrary, if you have a calm mind, the sounds will be of peaceful weather.
While meditating, the Muse headband will also allow you to hear your heartbeat in real-time. So, you will get a chance to synchronize your heartbeat and find calmness in your mind. Once you get a premium subscription, you will get access to 500+ guided meditations. Here, you will be able to find both body and mind meditations from experts that will help you gain control over your sleep cycle.
Pzizz is the most advanced power nap and sleep system that will help you fall asleep quickly and wake up completely fresh. On top of that, the app will also help you stay asleep for more time. Once you can manage your sleep hours, you will see yourself more energized and less stressed throughout the day.
Pzizz comes with a hybrid music system composed by humans and algorithmically remixed. So, the sounds that you hear are optimized for keeping you asleep. You can even control the voiceover as per your preference with this app.
The best thing about Pzizz is that it will learn with time to find out what type of sounds you like the most. So, the app can provide you with the best sleeping experience with time. You can find the app on both Android and iOS devices.
Calm is a top-ranked sleep meditation app that has already helped millions of users. The app has various guided meditations, breathing exercises, relaxing soundtracks, sleep stories, and also masterclasses by experts.
The best thing about the Calm app is the Sleep Stories section which contains various bedtime stories for both kids and adults. The stories are read aloud by soothing voices from different celebrities. You can access only a few stories for free. You will be able to access the entire library of stories as soon as you purchase the premium subscription.
On top of that, the app also comes with a Daily Calm feature. This is a 10-minute daily program that will help you relax throughout the day and stay energized too. You will see yourself getting an adequate amount of good quality sleep through such programs in this app. You can access it on both Android and iOS devices.
Insight Timer is a top-ranking sleep meditation app. The app is filled with guided meditations, sleep tunes, and also some talks given by experts from around the world. On top of that, you can also find various meditation courses in the app to improve your sleep quality and overcome insomnia.
There are 70,000+ guided meditations embedded in the app. Some of them are short, on-the-go meditations that you can listen to at any time and any place. The app also comes with a tracker that will help you stay aware of your progress.
Other than improving your sleep, the app can also help you out in improving your focus, helping you recover faster, and reducing anxiety. You can download Insight Timer on your Android and iOS devices to stay on the right track.
The Calm Sleep app is free to use, and its relaxing sleep sounds will help you improve sleep quality to a considerable extent. You can even make your short naps more effective with the help of this app. This will turn out to be a life-changing app for people ready to take up daily sessions to achieve mindfulness and improve daily sleep.
You can get access to 100+ guided meditations, sleep sounds, and sleep stories for calming you down. You will be able to sleep quickly and also wake up pretty smoothly because of these sounds.
The app allows you to filter out the sounds as per your requirements. You can achieve mental peace and stay calm at any moment through the ways offered in this app. You can download this app for free on your Android and iOS devices.
Slumber is the most popular sleep meditation app on iOS. It helps improve your sleep quality with the help of science. The Slumber team works with top meditation experts to create meditations that can help you reach the highest stage of relaxation and fall asleep faster.
There are 350+ soothing stories embedded in the app that uses guided imagery and various techniques to induce sleep. The app also uses three-dimensional sound experiences to calm your mind and body. You can customize and control the music and sound effects as per your liking.
Sleepiest is your sleeping buddy to help you sleep faster and wake up happier. You can explore various sleep sounds and bedtime stories to improve your sleep quality. The app claims to provide you with an average of 32 minutes of longer sleep each night after using the app for 5 days.
There is a huge collection of bedtime stories to choose from. They will help you fall asleep sooner than you can think. There are extremely soothing sleep sounds that will connect you with nature and help you fall asleep faster. You can even try out the sleep meditations for finding calmness within yourself.
The app allows you to compose your own unique sleep sound by taking care of the parameters. Sleep tracking will give you accurate insights into your sleep cycle and tell you about the amount of time you spend in REM, non-REM, and also deep sleep. The app is available on all iOS devices, from iPad to iPhones.
BetterMe is a one-stop app that comes with simple techniques and guided courses for moving towards a better life. There is a personalized daily program with a checklist of effective practices at different times of the day. You can also find breathing exercises included in the app itself.
BetterMe comes with meditations and calm stories to provide you with a restful and restorative night’s sleep. It is the best sleep meditation app with varied tales in comforting voices. There are soothing sounds that will help you fall asleep within a few minutes. On top of that, multi-day relaxing meditation courses are also available in the app.
Relax and Sleep Well
Relax and Sleep Well includes 6 meditation and hypnosis recordings to help you eliminate stress and anxiety from your life. This will ultimately help you get a good quality sleep at night. You can get access to the first two sessions for free.
The 1st two sessions will take you on a relaxing journey to explore the deepest levels of self-hypnosis. You can expect profound relaxation with subtle soundscapes in the background of Glenn’s soothing voice.
This app uses powerful hypnotherapy techniques and sound effects to make every meditation more effective and help you enter a soothing state of mind before going off to sleep. You can get access to this app on both Android and iOS devices.
Breethe is a useful app to navigate your life at a relaxing pace. You will get to learn about sleep management, stress management, and mindfulness through this app. There are 1000+ guided meditations, soothing soundtracks, and talks from experts that will help you improve your life.
Breethe also provides you with sleep stories, bedtime visualizations, morning meditations, and breathing exercises to calm your mind. The more you are away from anxiety and stress, the better sleep quality you can expect in life.
BetterSleep provides you with a personalized sleeping experience for better sleepy nights and wakeful mornings. Once you start using this app, you will notice a positive impact on your anxiety and stress levels. Ultimately, you will see that your sleep quality will improve significantly.
When you wake up, you will be rested and refreshed for the next day. You can combine your favorite sounds and music to create a perfect mix that helps you sleep better. These natural sounds will help you connect with nature and sleep well.
The Sleep Tracker will help you analyze your sleep cycle and find out any actionable ways to improve it. So, you can move towards improving your sleep quality by downloading BetterSleep on your Android and iOS devices.
If you wish to track your sleep and analyze how you sleep every night, you should definitely check out the Sleep Cycle app. It will help you track your sleeping patterns and provide you with various tips to optimize your sleep time.
On top of that, Sleep Cycle also comes with an alarm clock that will gently wake you up when you are in your lightest sleeping phase. This will help you wake up feeling refreshed and energized. You can expect a good amount of accuracy from this app to wake you up at the right time.
Many people are struggling with sleep issues. With the use of the right sleep meditation apps, you can expect a better sleep quality in your day-to-day life. The apps mentioned above will help you improve your sleep quality and take care of your sleeping cycle.
Next, you can check out some of the Best Fitness Apps.