Want to be healthier and feel better about your life? Get some (more) sleep.

Sleep is tied to physical health across the body’s systems. Getting enough sleep can lower your risk of heart disease, kidney problems, high blood pressure, and more. It makes you less likely to be obese, helps your body regulate hunger and insulin production, and triggers the hormones that lead to healthy growth and development in children and teens.

Sleep also helps you function well mentally. It helps you learn, solve problems, deal with difficult emotions, cope with change, and make good decisions. And getting enough sleep lowers your risk for depression, engaging in risky behavior, and even getting in a car accident.

If you’re not sleeping enough – and you can tell you aren’t if you are struggling to get out of bed and need an alarm clock to wake you up every morning – it’s time to change your habits. Here are the best apps to help you get the sleep you need to live long and feel well!



Android: Free

iPhone: Free

Let SleepBot know when you’re going to sleep and when you wake up, and it will track your sleep, help you wake up at the right time, and give you insights into your sleep patterns and cycles. If it takes you a while to fall asleep, you can even tell it to wait a given amount of time after you push the button before it credits you with sleep. SleepBot can also use your phone’s onboard sensors to track how you move when you’re sleeping, and it can record any sounds you make while asleep. It offers plenty of data and guidance to help you improve your sleep. Free. Android. Apple.



Android: Not Available

iPhone: Free to download, in-app purchases

If you use an Apple Watch and you love data, Pillow is the app for you. It works with the sensors in your watch to not only track your sleep, but to give you detailed analysis of when you’re asleep, when you’re awake, how deeply you’re sleeping, and much more. You can find out how much you’re moving at night and if there are times when you move more. The app is free to download, and you can pay $5 for even more features and personalized reports.


Night Shift and Twilight

Android: Free

iPhone: Free, built-in

The blue light that emanates from handheld devices is known to reduce melatonin production, which can keep you awake. However, you can still use your device as you’re winding down for bed, you just need to eliminate the blue light. iPhones come with an app that does that automatically, called Night Shift. If you use an Android phone, download Twilight, a free app that will automatically adjust the light on your screen based on the time of day.


Sleep Genius  

Android: $4.99

iPhone: $4.99

If it helps NASA astronauts sleep, then maybe it will work for you, too! This is the first sleep app based entirely on science. It helps you fall asleep by taking you through a specific program, designed to calm both your mind and your body. It also helps you calculate your ideal bedtime, based on when you need to get up and how many sleep cycles you need. Sleep Genius also offers a gentle alarm clock, designed to wake you at the perfect time for you, and a power nap option, in case you need a pick-me-up during the day. 


White Noise

Android: $1.99 Full/$2.99 Premium

iPhone: $1.99 Full/$2.99 Premium

White noise is proven to help you sleep better, because it helps reduce ambient noise and may even help your brain achieve more time in deep sleep. If you sleep in an area that is loud or nothing else has worked, white noise may be the boost you need to sleep more, better, and longer. The app offers a free version, with over 40 sound loops that you can also mix, as well as alarm sounds to wake you. The full version is $1.99 and removes ads while adding more alarms. The premium version, at $2.99, gives you 50 more sound loops and more control over pitch and volume.



Android: Free to download, in-app purchases

iPhone: Free to download, in-app purchases

Do you struggle to wind down at the end of the day or lay in bed for a while before you can turn your brain off to sleep? Calm can help you settle down, settle in, and get the rest you need. It’s a meditation app with several meditations aimed at helping you let go of stress so you can sleep. Choose your track, then settle in and let it guide you to sleep. The app also provides relaxing nature sounds that can help you release your day and settle in to sleep. Signing up is free, but some of the meditations will cost extra.



Android: Free to download, in-app purchases

iPhone: Free to download, in-app purchases

If meditation doesn’t work and white noise isn’t your thing, maybe a digital pill will help. DigiPill uses language and other sounds, mixes it together, and uses it to help you destress, engage your mind in healthy ways, change how you think, and promote a better life. Simply choose the particular pill that’s right for you, settle in, and listen. The pills are about 30 minutes each, and can help you sleep deeper, eliminate anxiety, or even power nap. Your first pill is free and you can purchase more.


Sleep Cycle

Android: Free

iPhone: Free

If you’re always waking up tired, it’s possible that you wake up in the wrong part of your sleep cycle. This app uses your phone’s sensors to analyze your sleep for the sole purpose of waking you when you’re in light sleep. You simply tell it when you need to wake by, and it will make sure that you wake during the light sleep cycle closest to that time. You can choose from several different alarms, or use your own music. 


Sleep Soundly Hypnosis

Android: Free to download, in-app purchases

iPhone: Free to download, in-app purchases

This app offers over 75 hypnosis sessions that will help you get to sleep through guided hypnosis techniques. All of the sessions on the app include Theta Wave Technology or Binaural Betas and Subliminal Technology, which help soothe the brain and lull you sleep. If you have trouble turning your brain off, so to speak, the Sleep Soundly app is designed to limit stimulation and focus your mind on falling asleep.

Getting more sleep could help you live better and longer, so it’s worth the investment of your time and energy. Give yourself the gift of health and wellness when you figure out which of these apps will work best for you and learn to use it every night.

by: Sarah Winfrey