When it comes to buying sleep trackers, some experts say… sleep on it
A new sleep age is upon us. From biometric wearables to night stand devices that track your movement, many sleep trackers aimed at improving your sleep have flooded the $28B sleep market.
But, when it comes to the effectiveness of these gadgets, The New York Times reports that some sleep specialists think companies like Fitbit and SleepWatch may be dreaming.
Welcome to the world of ‘Orthosomnia’
In a 2017 case study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, a team of researchers found evidence to suggest sleep trackers often provide inaccurate data, and actually increase sleep anxiety — that could lead to heightened symptoms of insomnia.
It was in this journal that the unhealthy obsession with achieving perfect sleep was coined as “orthosomnia” — a fixation that could train you to practice bad sleep hygiene (like looking at a screen before bed).
Of course, researchers at sleep tech companies defend the accuracy of their devices, which is all the positive reinforcement sleepyheads need to feel comfortable allowing a wearable to tuck them in at night.
Is good old-fashioned shut-eye a tired notion?
Obviously getting enough sleep on a regular basis is crucial, but experts fear that consumers have moved away from listening to their bodies, and have become far too dependant on sleep trackers (even after doctors warn them of the potential pitfalls) — and it’s keeping them up at night.