If your sleep schedule has been off for the past year, you’re not alone. Many of us have been under more stress than usual and nothing disrupts a good night’s sleep like stress, anxiety, and general unrest about the state of the world. Enter: Wave Sleep, the app founded by Mason Levey and Brad Warsh here to help you get your sleep habits back on track. Using a combination of relaxation techniques and live sessions that are like a very chill version of Instagram live, Wave Sleep wants to help coach you to a better, more restful sleep. We reached out to the founders to break down how the app works.
How it Works
No surprise for anyone who struggles to fall asleep, a lot of very common things can disrupt your sleep schedule. The founders explain that alcohol, caffeine, food right before bed, a room that is not dark, scrolling social media or your phone endlessly before bed, and going to bed a different times each night are all things that can lead to restless nights.
To hold yourself accountable and actually get to bed at the same time every night, you can book a live session in advance. “This creates accountability for bedtime, and our mission is to help clients create healthy bedtime habits and routines," they explain.
As you tune into a session, live or on-demand, you’ll find a number of sleep guides and scenarios to help you sleep. Fall asleep rocking in a hammock, or on the Amalfi Coast, or if that doesn’t catch your interest, you can fall asleep as your favorite animal or in your favorite pre-pandemic hangout.
During each session, you can expect guides to walk you through a number of techniques to help you relax, like a guided meditation. “Our combination of breathing exercises, body scans and visualizations are great for reducing stress and anxiety as well as reducing tension in the body, therefore inducing muscle relaxation,” the founders explain, “Visualizations are also great in that they help you take your mind off anything stressful and can mentally prepare you for better sleep.”
Music plays a huge role in helping you drift off as well. You’ll notice as the sleep guides walk you through each session gentle music plays in the background, it’s a mix of sounds explains Matthew Wong, the director of music. “We use a technique called Brainwave Entrainment so that, after listening to the music and sounds for some time, the brain will begin to match the frequencies and waves of the tunes," he says. "The tones, winds, and other elements we use are put together into a musical wave and tuned in such a way that it mimics the waves that appear in REM sleep, therefore inducing relaxation and allowing us to fall into a deeper sleep, faster.”
The Review of Wave Sleep App
I have notoriously bad sleep habits that have only worsened since the start pf the pandemic. Melatonin has been the only thing to get my schedule back on track. There are times where even melatonin doesn’t work and still I can't get to sleep. It seems almost counter-intuitive to grab my phone when I can’t sleep, but instead of doom-scrolling or opening up TikTok I opened up the WAVE app and picked a session.
The app itself is pretty easy to navigate and far less busy or distracting than any social media app. It’s also in dark mode so you’re not squinting to see or rushing to turn down the brightness. For my first session, I chose “Fall Asleep In the Rainforest” guided by Marcellus, one of their many silky-voiced sleep guides. I usually cannot get my brain to just shut off most nights but found that during these sessions I was too busy focusing on visualizing to overthink. I was nearly asleep almost halfway through the session. Throughout the week my schedule was a bit more consistent, though I was still tuning into the on-demand sessions instead of the live sessions. Getting to sleep earlier is something I’m still working on but I like how quickly I can quiet my mind using this app.
You can download the app in the app store. The app is free until March 12 where it will be $10 a month.