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How to Track SleepSleep is one of the most important aspects of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. It is essential to repair the muscles that you go to the gym to meticulously tear down, in the effort to make them grow back stronger and more durable.

It is what doctors always recommend when you are out sick with the flu. Sleep is what allows your body to address any swelling it has (have you ever noticed that swelling always seems to get better only when you are asleep).

And perhaps, most important, getting the proper amount of rest is essential to brain health. Skimping on rest can and will result in your brain beginning to malfunction. Whether it is the ability to store memories, capacity to recall those memories that were stored or just your overall cognitive abilities.

There are entire disorders that ruin our cognitive abilities because it hampers our physical ability to sleep. Take, for instance, Sleep Apnea. There are two different types of it, but both directly correlate to you not being able to get enough sleep to reset your body. Resulting in serious problems for those who rely on having a highly alert brain.

But why is sleep so important to mental health? The answer is simple when you do not get enough rest you are necessarily decreasing your brain’s ability to function. Knowing these facts makes it painfully obvious that we need to be able to ensure we get the proper amount of rest, by tracking our sleep patterns.

Ways to track your sleep

The most obvious way to track sleep is to make sure you get to bed at a time that allows you to fall asleep and still have the necessary amount of rest by the time you need to wake up.

The problem with this is that the only thing you can be sure of is that you fell asleep at a decent time and woke up when you needed to. But you can’t tell whether or not you are getting a good nights rest. And that is where the majority of people have their issues.

Most people have no clue whether or not they are sleeping through the whole night. Luckily, there is a device that can help you track your sleep more accurately.

This device is called a fitness tracker, and it has been on the market for several years now, but recently it has enjoyed a boost in popularity increasing sales.

Why are fitness trackers so popular?

Fitness trackers are beginning to gain so much notoriety because they are all in one device that tracks how well you are doing (strictly in health and fitness terms). The count your steps, calculate miles run and even calories burned. Some of them can tell you what your heart rate is and some even have a GPS tracker in them so that you can get the most accurate reading of your fitness accomplishments for the day, week, month, you can even look at the entire year’s results on some of these things.

Sure all of these functions are absolutely incredible, but there is another, an even more beneficial feature that these small devices have, and that is the ability to monitor your sleep patterns accurately.

How to use a fitness tracker to monitor sleep

The very first step of using your device to track sleep is to actually use your device. Often, people put all of their electronics on the charger over night, so when they wake up, their devices are fully charged and ready for the day. Don’t do this with your fitness tracker, instead keep on at nights (especially at nights).

Now that we’ve got that out of the way we can move onto the steps of monitoring your sleep and extracting that information from the fitness tracker. The first thing you will want to do when going to bed is set your fitness tracker onto sleep mode. This isn’t always necessary, and almost never is with the higher end models because they have the ability to detect when you are sleeping automatically.

The tracker will be able to tell you are asleep because your movement should have decreased when sleeping. Once it detects an hour of little or no movement, it will enter into sleep mode. If you wake up at any time throughout the night, it will calculate that and subtract it from your sleep time. For example, if you sleep for seven hours and wake up three times in the night, it will recognize that movement and subtract it from sleep hours.

However long you are awake for is how many minutes they subtract. So if you wake up for five minutes each time the device will calculate that you slept for 6 hours and 45 minutes.

You might wonder: how does it know if I am sleeping or awake? This is done using a technology called “actigraphy, ” and it measures your movements to help determine whether or not you are getting solid hours of sleep or moving around, tossing and turning throughout the night.

How do you access your sleep logs?

When you wake up (the device will recognize that movement and go into its regular daytime mode), you can log into the app that your device is connected to on your phone, sync the two devices, and get the data that was recorded for the night.

The app will show how many hours you slept that night (minus the times you woke up throughout the evening) and give you a comparison of the other days you have logged that week. This data should be gathered on a nightly basis so you can get a more detailed look at how well you are sleeping.

Detailed sleep tracking

Some of the more accurate monitors will offer the user two different sleep modes; normal and sensitive. Normal sleep monitoring is good enough for most people, but if you are noticing that you wake up still tired every day, even though your logs say you are sleeping well, you can switch to the sensitive mode.

The sensitive mode tracks every movement that you make through the night and gives you a much more detailed look at what is happening while you sleep.

Wrap – UP

Tracking your sleep is an integral part of tracking your health. Doctors all over the world agree that getting the proper amount of sleep is one of the absolute most important things you can do to stay healthy. Fitness trackers, make tracking sleep infinitely easier.