Iowa Sleep Blog

Monitoring Your Sleep Keeps Getting Easier – iPhone Operating System Adds Sleep Activity Tracker

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

We’ve told you about how Fitbits can help your sleep, but now sleep tracking for iPhone and iPad users will require little more than downloading the phone’s new operating system, iOS8, this fall.

Apple announced on Monday that iOS8 will include a health-monitoring app called HealthKit, which can log the user’s footsteps, heart rate and sleep patterns. Don’t panic if you already have a mobile app or FitBit monitoring this information. The HealthKit will provide a comprehensive hub for all of your health, wellness and fitness-related stats, as well as third-party applications.

The key to improving your health with HealthKit or any personal fitness monitor is to review your data carefully and analyze the patterns. Then you can decide what changes you want to make to improve your health and begin implementing them.

You may decide, for example, to increase your activity level by 3,000 steps a day or to go to bed a half hour earlier each night. By tracking your progress, you’ll know when you achieve your goals. You can then set more ambitious goals and monitor your progress as you strive to attain them.

If your patterns don’t change, the data won’t change, and you’ll probably be tempted to quit using your app or stop wearing your personal fitness monitor. Studies have shown that one third of Americans who own a wearable fitness device stop using it within six months.

At Iowa Sleep, we’re happy to see the variety of sleep- and health-tracking devices and apps available. They provide valuable descriptive data about sleep — how long you sleep, how many times you wake up, etc.  But they don’t provide the information needed to explain why you are not sleeping or to determine whether you might have a sleep disorder.

If you can’t sleep, feel excessively tired, or are snoring at night, it might be time to seek help from our experts at Iowa Sleep. We invite you to contact us at or 515-225-0188.

We’re also eager to hear from you if you use technologies like mobile apps or Fitbits to help track your sleep:

  • Which one works best for you?
  • What have you learned about your sleep?
  • How have you changed your routine to improve your sleep? 

Share your comments below.