All parents have been there… that moment when your baby has just nodded off and as you breath a sigh of relief there’s a ‘Ding Dong!’ or ‘Beep beep’ or ‘Woof woof’ ending in a very loud ‘Waaaaaah!’ from baby.
When babies first fall asleep, it takes around 15 minutes for them to pass through light sleep into deeper REM sleep. Any sudden noise can startle and wake them (read more about Baby Sleep Thieves here). And that could be all the sleep they get from that nap… a mere 5 or 10 minutes- not enough for baby and definitely not enough for Mama or Papa!
Enter the Hush Hat – a pretty-darn ingenious invention by an American mama. It is a sound-absorbing hat made from visco-elastic medical grade foam that is also soft and comfortable.
The Hush hat blocks all excessive, intrusive noises that register above 75 decibels. It does not block out all noise as this would be unhelpful for a baby’s long-term language development and sleep habits, but does insure that your baby gets a chance to adapt to its new noisy world.
It is said to be very comfortable and light-weight and can be worn indoors and outdoors. They come in four sizes (S,M,L and XL) to fit babies with all head shapes and sizes.
Now they need to make these for big people who also hate being in noisy shopping centres and woken up by lawn mowers and cars honking especially during a weekend nap or lie in. Where do I get mine please?
Baby sleep tech is amazing… here are a few more inventions you need to know about:
We’ve been on the hunt for the latest gadgets that will help bring about more calm at bedtime. Look at what we found:
The Ocean Wave Relaxation Projector
This plug-in wall or ceiling projector will transform any space into a calm zone. Those who have bought it can’t stop raving about how calming its underwater effect is. Not ideal for those who fear drowning.
The Essential Oil Aromatherapy Diffuser
Relax and rejuvenate with this humidifier that releases aromatherapy oil as well as being a versatile LED light. You choose just how bright, misty and long you want it on for.
The Snooz- Ultra-portable white noise machine
This cute guy sits wherever you want it him to. With a mini-fan inside the dome, it makes the sound of a whirring fan to help block out noise pollution that could otherwise disrupt a restful night’s sleep.
The Galaxy Star Projector
This battery-operated nightlight will fill your room with twinkly stars and the sound of nature, before automatically turning off the sound after 30 minutes. This is a great sleep gadget for anyone who fears the dark but battles to fall asleep with a traditional night light on.
If you could, which would you use to bring a little calm to your bedroom?
We have all been taught that screen time in our bedrooms and just before bedtime is a no-no. And yes, it is certainly must be avoided. However, as the field of technology has exploded and it has made its way onto our smart phones (and even our wrist watches) we have learned a lot about sleep.
1. Our bedrooms became sleep laboratories. Sleep monitoring has been simplified as each person can find out more about their sleep duration and sleep quality using apps like the Azumio Sleep Time App. The average person can find out if they are sleeping well enough and see if they are accruing a sleep debt.
2. Early diagnosis and intervention became the norm. Prior to the influence of tech, a patient would approach a doctor with a complaint such as ‘I take forever to fall asleep’ or ‘I just keep waking up’, but had little or no data to give the doctor. With sleep apps producing detailed sleep graphs (that look at quantity and quality) patients can get a quicker diagnosis and start treatment sooner. It also makes tracking progress due to lifestyle changes or medical intervention far easier.
3. Sleep alarms have saved the day. Alarms can now be set on smart phones to wake you up when you are in a light state of sleep. Using a wrist watch or arm cuff paired with your smart phone can assist in monitoring blood pressure, heart rate and oxygen-levels for those who struggle with sleep disorders like sleep apnea. This can provide tremendous relief for loved ones who worry.
4. Smart phones have transformed into baby monitors. Parents can install baby monitor apps like Cloud Baby Monitor and Dormi to their smart phones so that they can view a real-time video and audio recording of their sleeping baby as well as keep track of a baby’s sleep patterns. Many parents find this option far more convenient, safe and affordable and of course, incredibly reassuring. Of course, it requires access to wi-fi.
What tech are you using to sleep better? Or is there a sleep app that you would just-love-to create? Personally, I wouldn’t mind one that sends a little jolt each time my ‘special someone’ snores.
Technology has taken us to some pretty darn crazy places… From finding water on Mars to Kim K’s cleavage, today’s technology is taking people anywhere they want to go. However, whilst technology may be incredibly good at getting you what you want and where you want to be, it is probably also getting in the way of a good night’s sleep.
Many people apply the wisdom of ‘no TV in the bedroom’, but fewer have managed to keep laptops and phones from joining them under the covers.
Switching off technology is the first step to switching off to fall asleep.
Screen time before bed upsets the brain’s sleep-wake cycle. As you look into a bright light your brain delays the release of melatonin as it is ‘tricked’ into thinking that it is still daytime. Screen time can also upset your ability to switch off your stress response. Often a simple swipe to see some pretty Instagram posts can turn into a sweat session as you suddenly become aware of pressing work emails or your crush’s latest escapades (that didn’t include you!).
Take back the night and get the sleep you need:
1. Turn off all devices 30 minutes before you start your bedtime routine.
2. Use ‘nanny’ apps to help you stay away from stressful places- like your mailbox or Internet banking during certain hours ie. after 8pm.
3. Find a healthier alternative – light some candles, grab a book, do a crossword, take a warm bath, focus on the things you are grateful for…
and enjoy the life-boosting benefits of a great night’s sleep.
Here are the latest and greatest sleep apps that you just can’t sleep without.
1. Sleep Calculator – Ever wondered: “If I want to wake up at 5.00am what time should I go to bed?” or “If I go to bed now, what time should I wake up?” well the Sleep Calculator app gives you the answers to these questions. This app provides a ‘go to bed’ alarm and a ‘wake-up alarm’ so that you can get the right amount sleep everyday.
2. Calm – An app that offers guided mindfulness meditation to bring more clarity, joy, and peace of mind into your life, at work or at home. Highly praised by celebs and TV personalities, you may want to give this one a try just before bedtime.
3. Sleep Cycle Power Nap – This app is simple, yet powerful. Place your phone on your nightstand before you doze off and the app analyses your sleep patterns to wake you up before you get into deep sleep. This helps you wake up softly and avoid sleep inertia. You feel ready to go rather than ready to crawl back into bed.