Three podcasts that will help you fall asleep faster

Counting sheep can get a little laborious. Here are the 3 most popular podcast options that help you fall asleep fast:

1. Podcasts that are powerful sleep meditations 

If winding down is your problem, then meditation may be your best sleep medicine. From calm and melodic mantras to slow and rhythmic breathing, Sip and Om offers a daily podcast to keep it fresh. However, you may want to use the same meditation each night to train your brain to fall asleep faster.

2. Podcasts that bore you to sleep

I am not convinced that the author/narrator of these stories actually set out to create sleep-inducing podcasts, but his creations definitely will put you to sleep. This narrator has an awfully monotone voice and a seriously distracted thought process. Some long descriptions will help you lose the will to stay alive… I mean awake.

3. Podcasts that are actual bedtime stories

Various acclaimed authors tell interesting tales that will keep you glued to your mattress. If you struggle to fight the urge to get out of bed then these entertaining tales may be what you need to help you lie down long enough to actually fall asleep.

Make sure you give yourself the best chance of a good night’s sleep by starting your night out on a good mattress. Could it be that your old, uncomfortable mattress is robbing you of precious sleep? Mattresses should be replaced every 8 to 10 years. If it’s time to invest in a new bed, visit the Sealy website to see our range of mattresses.

Related stories:
Bedtime mantras for better sleep
Sayings to get you to sleep faster

Written by Roxanne Atkinson

Net Nanny App helps families switch off and go to bed

Getting enough sleep and spending quality time together are two of the key ingredients for a happy family life. Screen time can rob us of both.

We have become reliant on using technology at home to complete homework, check budgets, pay bills, fulfill work obligations and even socialise. Many people battle addictions linked to screen time – social media anxiety, gaming, gambling and pornography – that left unchecked can destroy marriages and families.

It’s no wonder then that The Net Nanny App has won endless Tech Awards for its effectiveness in helping individuals and families manage screen time effectively. The Net Nanny app suggests that you draw up a screen time agreement first and then use its features to help you all stick to this agreement. The Net Nanny app can help parents to:

• Create a screen-time schedule for each family member for each day of the week
• Limit access to time-wasting websites during ‘productive times’ such as when homework or paid work should be happening
• Block out dedicated off-screen time for the whole family to enjoy time offline together such as during dinnertime
• Receive notifications if your child or spouse attempts to view blocked sites or searches for mature content
• Keep track of each family members’ total time online each day or week
• Create a consistent bedtime by cutting off all online access at a certain time each evening

If you already own the ultimate Sealy bed and mattress, but find that screen time is stealing your sleep and robbing you of time with loved ones, then perhaps the Net Nanny App is the next best sleep investment you can buy for you and your loved ones.

Article Written by Roxanne Atkinson

Is social media giving you anxiety? Here’s how to take control

At best social media is a powerful tool that promotes connection. At worst, it can be damaging and self-destructive. It can cause anxiety – and we know anxiety is one of the biggest barriers to sleep.

Why are so many choosing a ‘social media detox’ and how do you know if you too are addicted?

Amanda Lambros, Clinical Fellow in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Curtin University said recently in an article in the Huffington Post:
“Social media can become extremely addictive in our lives, and also can be damaging depending on how you use it. It’s one of those things that has the power to benefit you, or have really negative effects, depending on how it’s used.”

Here are the most common symptoms related to social media anxiety:
• You fear checking your social media sites
• You feel worried if you don’t get a chance to check your social media feeds
• Your palms become sweaty when you go on social media sites
• Your gut feels tingly in anticipation after posting on social media
• You have a good day if you get many likes and a bad day if you get few likes or comments
• You find it difficult to finish tasks without checking social media feeds
• You find yourself making negative self-comparisons that harm your self-esteem and satisfaction.

Answered yes to most of those? Here are some solutions:

1. Limit the time you spend on social media.
This is easier said than done, but here are some helpful ideas:

• Remove social media apps from your phone so that you have to intentionally log onto a computer to check feeds.
• Use a nanny app so that you are cut-off at a specified time.
• Have a ‘smart phone bed’ in your home where all family members put their phones for the night. This prevents phones landing up at the dinner table or in bedrooms.

2. Limit what you see on social media
• Stop following feeds that have disturbing content.
• Un-friend people who don’t bring joy to your social media life. If this feels too confrontational then you can choose that their posts do not show up in your feed.
If you would like to find out more about how social media impacts your mental health here is a great article: Social media can cause loneliness and anxiety in young people

We have rounded up a few articles on the Sealy blog, with tips on how to feel less anxious and so get better sleep:

Gadgets that help you calm down

Why less is more

Do you have an anxiety problem?

Written by Roxanne Atkinson

Fitbit helps you sleep your way to better health

Fitbit knows that staying healthy is not only about exercise and diet – it’s about good quality sleep, too. At Sealy, we’ve always loved the Fitbit’s sleep-tracking technology, but things just got even better. Whilst the Fitbit One  required you to remove the sensor from the wrist band and wear it in a soft Velcro arm band at night, the Fitbit wrist watches require absolutely nothing special to track your sleep.

Simply wear your watch at night and the sleep-tracking will happen automatically.

What does this do for your sleep?
• Know how much and what kind of sleep you are getting each night
• Track patterns between your daytime activity level and sleep quality
• Use the Fitbit sleep graphs to see how your bedtime impacts your sleep
• Use the Fitbit alarm to wake up each morning in your lightest sleep phase

The Fitbit wristwatches are water-proof, lightweight, comfortable and carry a four to five day battery life.  They track the wearer’s activity through reading heart rate and movement via sensors under the watch face. The Fitbit wrist watch range includes the Fitbit Force, Fitbit Surge and Fitbit Blaze.

More info:
An in-depth review of Fitbit Blaze
An in-depth review of the Fitbit Surge

 

 

The Hush Hat that reduces noise for your baby

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:

A baby monitor that looks like a sock

Prams that promote sleep

 

Gadgets that can help calm you down

We’ve been on the hunt for the latest gadgets that will help bring about more calm at bedtime. Look at what we found:

So calm under the sea...
So calm under the sea…

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.

It smells good, and it looks good too!
It smells good, and it looks good too!

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.

A totally portable white noise machine!
A totally portable white noise machine!

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.

Twinkle, twinkle little star...
Twinkle, twinkle little star…

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?

What tech taught us about sleep in 2016

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.

Read more:

How this alarm will help you sleep better