Why ADHD Brains Have Trouble Sleeping
Over the years, researchers have identified connections between ADHD and trouble sleeping. While anyone can haw trouble sleeping, it can be more of a problem for those with ADHD due to factors like:
- Attention regulation – Distraction and hyperfocus that can cause you to lose track of time and stay up later, and difficulty mainlining a regular schedule
- Shifted sleep cycle – For many with ADHD, the sleep cycle is shifted by several hours which can mean being out of sync with the way today’s world is designed to work
- Dopamine issues – Many adults with ADHD have a gene (COMT) which suppresses the metabolism of dopamin making it harder for the body to regulate sleep
- Medication – Stimulant medications used by many with ADHD can also interfere with normal sleep patterns
- Co-morbid conditions – Depression, anxiety and other mood disorders can make falling and staying asleep harder
As with so many things in modern life, there are apps to help you get a better night’s sleep.
Sleep Apps for Those with ADHD
If you are experiencing sleep issues, here are some apps you consider trying to help you sleep more soundly.
- Sleep Cycle – This app automatically tracks your sleep patterns by listening to various sounds such as coughing and snoring. It then analyzes the overlay audio recording of these sleep patterns with the help of learning algorithms before presenting them to you in the form of data and graphs. Once it identifies your sleep cycle, the app monitors your movements and gently awakens you at the optimal moment – mostly in the lighter sleep stage. Depending on your sleep statistics, you can analyze your sleep patterns to see the amount of time you spent sleeping duringeach sleeping stage.
- Rise – This app is designed to to help you understand your melatonin cycle. It provides a visual reminder of your melatonin window helps you to feel motivated to go to bed at the ideal time for you, meaning you can get enough sleep so that you can focus, concentrate and feel better during the day.
- ADHD White Noise + Brown, Pink – Often someone who has ADHD can think better, stay on task longer or get better sleep if there is some white noise in her surroundings. This app provides that background noise that allows you to shut out the world and get to sleep.
- Atmosphere: Binaural Therapy Meditation – Binaural beats is another app that uses sound to induce the conditions for good sleep. It provides a form of sound wave therapy, are generated with this app to increase calm and focus.
- Calm – Calm is ideal if you enjoy listening to relaxing stories while you fall asleep. The app’s extensive library includes stories for adults and children. You can also use Calm for meditation, mindfulness, stretching, and breathing exercises. The library includes soothing music to help you fall asleep, as well. Options for children include lullabies and bedtime stories.
- Relax Melodies: This app lets you choose from free guided medications, sounds, music, and bedtime stories to create a personalized playlist to promote relaxation.
Given the wide variety of sleep apps available, it’s a good idea to thoroughly researching a sleep app’s functions and capabilities before downloading it and committing to a purchase or subscription. User reviews on app download sites can be helpful resources. Also, consulting with a professional can be very beneficial for people with persistent sleep issues. Some apps will link you with doctors, psychologists, or certified sleep coaches to help you create a realistic plan of action for improving your sleep.