Improve your sleep quality
A good night’s sleep is essential for repairing the body, clearing out toxins and reducing stress. While staring at a smartphone screen before going to bed has been found to damage sleep quality, there are still ways to use your smartphone to improve your sleep. For instance, for those with insomnia, there are many apps designed to help lull people to sleep. These don’t involve looking at a screen but instead rely on sound and indirect light. Evidence shows that certain ambient sounds and mood lighting can help certain people get to sleep. There are also sleep cycle alarm clocks that help you to wake up feeling fresher. These help to monitor your sleep patterns by recording sound and movement, waking you up when you are in your lightest sleep. Such apps can also measure your sleep quality and may even be able to alert you of health problems such as sleep apnea.
Another great way to track your sleeping is with a Fitbit watch. Not all track sleep but the Fitbit Inspire HR Heart Rate & Fitness Tracker does and runs under $100. My husband and I each have one of these. It also tracks heart rate and steps.
Keep up an exercise schedule
Regular physical exercise can help to ward off many health problems. Smartphones can be great tools for motivating us to exercise. In fact, there are countless apps designed to get us off the couch by helping us to set exercise goals and record progress. Step counter apps are some of the most popular examples. These can measure how many steps you take during the day and can encourage you to be less sedentary as a result. Wearable tech can be used in conjunction with these apps to create more accurate results. As for those that like to go jogging, there are plenty of running apps that can help you to plan routes, measure your performance and even get your competing against other app users. For those days when you may not fancy going for a run, these apps can help spur you to get your running shoes on. There are also apps that can help people to record gym workouts and recommend new exercises. If you’re getting into weights, such apps could help you to record reps and help you to focus on different parts of the body that may need training. It could be like having your own personal trainer in your pocket.
One of my favorite apps I use to track my walking and activity is Map My Walk by Under Armour. They have several versions depending on your need and comes for both mac and PC.
Cut your calories and find healthy recipes
You can also use apps to improve your diet. What we eat is just as important as our amount of sleep and physical exercise – using apps on your smartphone, you can seek advice on nutrition and change the way you eat. Some apps can help you to count calories, which could be useful if you’re trying to lose or gain weight. Others can help you watch your sugar intake, which could be useful if you have diabetes (or are just trying to avoid cavities). You simply enter the type of food and the app gives you the stats you need. Other apps can meanwhile help you to find healthy recipes suited to your needs. Some of these apps may be able to help you work with foods in your cupboards, while others may be able to help you plan out your shopping list. Such apps can help you to work within a budget.
Get help with allergies and intolerances
Living with allergies and intolerances can be a challenge – but with the right apps, you may be able to make it easier to avoid certain triggers. When it comes to food allergies and in-tolerances, there are plenty of apps that can tell you whether a certain food is likely to contain a certain ingredient, whether it be gluten or peanuts. Such apps may also be able to offer recipes that could allow you to work around your dietary restrictions. Other apps meanwhile can benefit those with hay fever by offering daily pollen reports in your area. This could help you determine whether or not to take antihistamines the morning before.
Know which pills to take and when
For those on a lot of different types of medication, it can be difficult to keep track of which pills to take and when. But with the help of the right apps, you may be able to change this by setting alarms and recording dosages of every pill. Such apps may even be able to be used in conjunction with a smart pill dispenser. This machine could help dispense the pills for you and your phone could simply alert you of when it’s time to take the pill. This could be useful for those with early onset dementia (or for those that are simply forgetful).
Track menstrual cycle & More
Women can also use apps to keep track of their periods and ovulation. Whether you’re trying for a baby, trying to avoid pregnancy or simply trying to plan events around your period, such apps could be very useful. There are also many separate apps that can monitor your pregnancy and even your baby’s health after birth. Such apps can help you to know what to expect at each stage of the pregnancy and may even be able to help you spot problems early so that you can get them checked out by a doctor.
Get first aid advice in an emergency
Cut or burn yourself and not sure what to do? Yes, there’s an app for that too. First aid apps can tell you exactly what to do in a medical emergency. This could be useful for not just when you injure yourself, but also when other people are injured – you may be able to offer medical assistance by using the app as your guide. You can also use these apps to learn what to do in advance and quiz yourself. This could help you to act more quickly in an emergency by already having the knowledge store away in your brain. Make sure to only use apps approved by official medical organizations such as American Red Cross so that you know you’re getting accurate advice. Check out The Best Apps to Have in Case of an Emergency.
Let apps improve your mental health
When fighting mental health problems, smartphones can sometimes make things worse. More people are using social media on their phones – and there are strong links to social media addiction and depression. That said, there are a growing number of apps that are helping to combat mental health problems. Such apps can help you to manage negative thoughts by asking questions and using activities to provide a sense of calm and well-being. They can act like therapists without the intimidation that can sometimes come with talking to a stranger. It’s worth trying out different apps if you’re in a bad place and seeing if any of them work for you.