Two new devices were separately introduced in the market recently to help improve sleep. The gadgets help address factors that cause lack of sleep due to jetlag or insomnia.
One device, the Re-Timer, resets the body clock or the Circadian Rhythm, by using green-blue lights to suppress melatonin, a hormone the body produces that makes a person sleepy. The device was developed by researchers at Flinders University who have been studying since 1978 the effect of light on the Circadian Rhythm.
A previous Stanford University study found that by exposing a person with jetlag to two-millisecond flash of light every 10 seconds advances by an average almost two hours a person’s Circadian Rhythm. Researchers from the university are currently developing a sleep mask with programmable LED llights to help people suffering from jetlag to sleep.
Re-Timer, the product of 11 patents and five clinical trials, is UV-free and independently tested for eye safety based on the international standard CEI IEC 62471. Upon waking up in the morning or evening, the person with sleep issues must wear Re-Timer daily throughout winter or during dark colder days if the wearer wants to boost energy and improve mood.
The recommended time of use is 30 minutes daily for seven days to change sleep time. To ensure that light is totally blocked, Re-Timer has an optimal delivery angle to block the light entering from below the eye since light above it is blocked by the eyebrows.
It weights like sunglasses and could be worn like ordinary specs. Its built-in battery is recharged using a USB cable.
Meanwhile, an entrepreneur and mechanical engineer, Michael Larson, developed Sleep Shepherd Blue, a headband worn by people suffering from insomnia. It uses brain-training sounds to help people get to deep sleep, the most critical stage that leaves a person feeling refreshed upon waking up. Deep sleep rebuilds muscle, improves mental reaction time and energises the body.
Larson developed the device to help his 17-year-old daughter who was diagnosed with a sleep disorder, reports Huffington Post. Rather than give her drug as the doctors prescribed, Larson used binaural beats to lull the brain into a state similar to meditative. The beat is lowered slowly until the user falls into deep sleep. The subtle humming noises are played in each ear of the headband.
Larson compares the beats to a hammock for the brain to help it slow down, or go to sleep. There are several apps and online streaming systems that likewise offer binaural beats, but it does not directly goes into the ears.