Scientists still debate over why we sleep. There is no doubt that we need to sleep but the effects of sleep are simply amazing and worth every bit of research that is done about it. While scientists are figuring out the many mysteries of sleep, the REM cycle, why we dream, sleepwalk, talk in our sleeps, and that one time when Professor Utonium began robbing toy stores in his sleep, we wake up to the shrill call of our alarms wondering why it feels as though we haven’t rested at all. Sleep Better is an iOS and Android app by Runtastic, a popular name in heath and fitness apps, and it helps analyze your sleep patterns telling you how efficient your slumber was. Sleep Better integrates with iOS 8’s health app.
You don’t need any sort of wearable device to use Sleep Better. You simply set the alarm, plug your phone into an outlet and set it somewhere near you before you go to bed. Launch the app and set the alarm. By default it is set to 8 in the morning. When you set the alarm, you can record if you had a drink before going to bed, consumed any caffeine, had a stressful day, worked out, are sleeping in someone else’s bed, or if you had a late meal.
To edit the alarm time, tap the time on the app’s home screen. To edit the the alarm settings, tap the alarm clock icon at the top right.
When you’re ready for bed, tap Start, and tuck yourself in. Sleep Better lets you record dreams that you’ve had. Any time you have a dream (and assuming you wake up after it) tap the little cloud button at the top left of the app’s screen and record whether it was a good or bad one. You can also enter a note about the dream you had.
When the alarm rings, slide to turn it off. Sleep Better will then ask you how you feel and generate a report based on the data entered from the time you went to bed to when you woke up. The app lets you view overall stats for each entry you make but if you want to narrow it down to a month or week, you will have to buy the full version of the app.
Sleep Better also features ads which can be removed with the full version. The app is basically calculating sleep efficiency which isn’t exactly a thing as far as sound sleep is concerned. It doesn’t say anything about the REM cycle but does take into account the effect of the moon cycle on our sleep. (Very useful if you’re a werewolf). Overall, it’s a cursory indicator of the quality of sleep you enjoy. It’s free so there is definitely no harm in trying it out and if it helps you sleep better, then it’s worth it.