I wrote a post recently about what Mum’s of Newborns really need – and the resounding agreement was SLEEP.
I always say I wish I’d started blogging sooner, when the boy was still a baby, but thinking about it properly, I probably wouldn’t have been capable. Mainly because the boy just would not sleep. Ever. He would wake up a minimum of 4 times every night, often more. He was still waking 3 times a night for milk at 20 months. It nearly broke me.
He sleeps well now (once he actually gets to sleep…another story!) but my own sleep has never recovered. It takes me ages to go to sleep, I wake often, and even when I feel like I’ve had my 8 hours, I still feel tired. I feel tired NOW.
I think in part this is due to having an underactive thyroid, and in part to being underactive myself (see my Inner Monologue of an Unfit Mother!) I’ve never been sure how to go around trying to fix these issues – it seems a bit self-indulgent!
However, I saw an assignment on a Bloggers Required email for a new sleep solution tool called S+ by ResMed. This is the first thing I’ve ever been sent to review for my blog, and I was so pleased it was something that could benefit me.
I’ve been using it for about 6 weeks now, with every night for the past three or four weeks. I can’t say I’ve seen a difference yet, but I can tell it’s a work in progress that could be excellent in the long run.
I wanted to write the review in two parts – this one to explain how it works and how I’m finding it, and another one in another couple of months once I’ve started implementing what I’m learning about my sleep.
So, what’s an S+? It’s a gadget! I bloody love a gadget.
This one came in some super swish packaging (I didn’t take a picture – sorry rubbish newbie alert) but here’s one of it in pride of place:
Then you download an app, and sync your phone with the S+ through bluetooth. This was all simple. You need to leave your phone on the app screen when using it, so you need to switch off automatic shut down and leave your phone plugged in all night, which I’m a bit wary of – I rest it somewhere not flammable! This is because the screen measures the amount of light in your room, amongst other clever things. One of my very favourite things about this is that the plug is dual – it charges the S+, but also has a USB port for your phone or tablet charger, so even if you only have one plug near your bed you can still use it.
The app sets up the S+ for the night, using some simple settings:
You choose the settings depending on what sort of a day you’ve had, and then you can check it’s monitoring your movement properly:
This isn’t actually my breathing pattern – it’s my wriggling about to get a good line for the purposes of review, but I’m sure you get my drift!
Notice here that there are some options: Mind Clear, Smart Alarm and Relax to Sleep.
Mind Clear is something you can use to note down all those thoughts buzzing around your head so you don’t worry about forgetting them come morning. You can either type them in, or use the voice recorder and access them in the morning.
The Smart Alarm is one of those clever ones that judges when you are in a very light sleep and wakes you up then, rather than getting a fright when you are completely El Zonko and suddenly Cold Play are bleating at you from your alarm radio. Like!
The Relax to Sleep is one of those white noise kind of apps that you think in desperation might help your naps-are-for-loserrrrrs baby sleep (HA!) but for grown ups. They have all sorts of various noises, a little classical, some beach and ocean noises. Surprisingly, these really helped me nod off quickly. Unfortunately I can only use them when Him Indoors is away otherwise he shouts at me to turn my hippy crap whale noises off (he doesn’t really, but he can’t sleep when they are on. Ho hum) (and there aren’t any whales)
Once you’ve set these off, it’s sleepy time! And when you wake up, it’s time for the cool analytics!
As you can see – I wake up a lot! So far on using it I’ve noticed that invariably I get all my REM sleep (explains my epic dreams!) but rarely do I get my deep sleep.
There are all sorts of extra analytics on the ResMed website which you can look into, and after each sleep you get a little tip or fact about your sleep. This was today’s:
These can be tagged by relevance, so you’ll get more exact advice for your needs as you go on.
As I said at the start of the review, I don’t think my sleep has massively improved yet, but I am getting the tools I need to improve it as we go on – I know that my issue is with deep sleep, and I can analyse the worst and best days. Don’t tell Him Indoors, but the days I get the best deep sleep – and actually wake up refreshed – are when he is away! Oops!
I’ll follow up on this review in a few months to see how I’m getting on.