According to the CDC, adults need at least 7 hours of sleep every night for proper health and well-being—and those hours need to be good quality sleep. Any fewer than that and you've slipped into "short sleep" territory, which affects around 35.2% of all American adults.
Short sleep can be OK every once in a while, but regularly getting fewer than 7 hours of good quality sleep per night can increase your risk for several conditions, including depression, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, asthma, and more.
If you have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or getting good quality sleep, then you should see your doctor to rule out any underlying causes. If there's nothing wrong health-wise, then you may be able to improve your sleep habits by adding a few helpful sleep gadgets to your nightly routine.
Here are some of the best gadgets for sleep. You probably don't need all of them, but keep an open mind! You'd be surprised how much positive change one or two of these can bring to your life through better sleep.
This brilliant device will help you fall asleep and wake up in a way that doesn't leave you groggy and grumpy.
The Philips SmartSleep simulates the fading of sunset to signal to your body that it's time to sleep, and the gradual shine of sunrise to signal to your body that it's time to wake up.
No more jolting awake to a blaring alarm! Set a custom wake-up time and replace your alarm for good. It has several other peripheral features, including a nifty phone charging dock and a midnight lamp.
Sleep tracking is important because you need to know whether your sleep quality is any good before you can address any issues.
Sadly, most consumer sleep trackers—especially free sleep tracking mobile apps—aren't very good because they don't gather accurate enough data.
The go2sleep by Sleepon is unique because it has advanced capabilities to monitor your blood oxygen levels, heart rate, sleep apneas and hypopneas, and more.
It'll track sleep quality, sleep duration, toss and turns, and give you a nightly sleep score. Plus it's comfortable to wear!
One of the best ways to prepare your body for a good night's rest is to make sure your muscles are loosened and relaxed.
You'd be surprised how tense your neck, shoulders, upper and lower back, and thighs can be without even realizing it—and that muscle tightness interferes with your sleep.
A self-operating deep tissue massager will work wonders for muscle tension all over your body, and you'll be able to sleep better because of it. It's a lot more economical (and convenient) than going to a massage therapist!
If you're like me, setting the right temperature for sleep can be tough. The chiliPAD sleep system is a water-filled comforter than hooks up to a circulating system.
The water in the comforter is heated or cooled to your ideal temperature, keeping you at the perfect temperature all night long. Say bye to random wake-ups because you're too hot or too cold.
The chiliPAD sleep system comes in a two-person variant as well, allowing each of you to select your own preferred sleep temperature for the best sleep quality. No more fights over AC and heater temperature settings!
5. SnoreRx Plus
Snoring is more than just an annoyance for those around you.
It can hinder the amount of oxygen you get while sleeping, which can harm your sleep quality and cause all kinds of long-term issues. Unfortunately, a lot of home remedies for snoring don't actually work.
The SnoreRx Plus is a simple device that aligns your jaw in a way that prevents your airway from narrowing during sleep. It uses a patented design that's FDA approved and clinically proven to stop you from snoring.
Our bodies are biologically programmed to feel at ease when we're embraced by gentle, physical pressure. It's the same reason why we feel comforted by deep hugs—and we can replicate that feeling of comfort when we sleep by using a weighted blanket.
The weighted blankets by Quility come in six different colors and several sizes: Throw, Twin, Full, Queen/King. The Full and Queen/King blankets also come in varying weights so you can pick the one that's best for you.
The Water Pillow is truly unique as the only pillow that has a water pouch inside. Not only does it feel more comfortable than any other kind of pillow, but it's been proven to help with neck pain and improve sleep quality.
As part of a Johns Hopkins clinical study, the Water Pillow was ranked best among competitors for how fast subjects fell asleep, how often they woke up during sleep, reduction of neck pain, and overall quality of sleep.
It's now used in thousands of healthcare clinics around the world.
If you're like me and prefer sleeping on your side, you really need to start sleeping with a knee pillow.
It'll keep your body aligned properly—or as close to proper as it gets while lying on your side—and reduce all kinds of muscle strains and joint stress while sleeping. Such a simple accessory, but the impact on sleep quality is real.
The jury is still out on whether blue light from digital displays at night can harm sleep quality, but there's plenty of anecdotal evidence—including personal experience from yours truly—that blocking blue light actually does help you fall asleep faster.
One option is to install blue light filter apps on all of your devices, but that can be a hassle and not all devices have blue light filters. A pair of sleep glasses will block all blue light, including any coming from your household lamps, and better prepare your body for sleep.
If you like falling asleep to music or podcasts or white noise, you've probably tried sleeping with headphones or earbuds. I've tried that several times and the sad truth is that no headphones or earbuds are comfortable enough to sleep with.
Which is why a pair of sleep mask headphones may be worth grabbing. It slips over your ears for maximum comfort, allowing you to roll around on your pillow without anything jabbing into you. The eye covers that block out light while you sleep are a nice bonus.
Level Up Your Life Today
Getting good quality sleep in the proper amounts every night can work wonders for your physical health and mental health. It may not be easy to rein in your sleep habits, but if you can only make one lifestyle change, this will provide the most bang for your buck.
The next best thing? Making sure your daily hygiene is kept in check. Proper hygiene doesn't have to take much time or effort—as long as you're doing the right things in the right ways.