Author: SLEEPON

Demystifying the Development of an Anti-snoring Device – Daily Log 4

An Exciting Feature.

Hi everyone! If you read our last post, did you use a lateral sleeping position? We hope so!

Our development of the anti-snoring device has achieved quite solid progress. But in the beginning, we had two different opinions about the development direction. The first idea is to create a digital device with the ability to present sleep position data but also high costs. The second view is to produce a low-cost non-digital product purely based on Positional Therapy. We finally chose the first plan as we believe sleep position data can help users better understand their sleep conditions.

Just the next day, our product engineer had a stunning idea! He planned to use 3D animation to create sleep position simulation. Users can watch their position changes in the app the next day after wake up. The whole team thought the idea was brilliant and if realized, this device will probably be the only product (except using cameras) with the function of sleep position playback.

We have three product teams.

Team 1 takes charge of industrial design, CMF (color, material & finish), and mechanical design.

Team 2 is responsible for the development of PCBA (Printed Circuit Board Assembly) and embedded software & algorithm.

Team 3 works on the app page and backend.

Thus, the task of building sleep position playback function was given to team 2 and 3. Team 2’s goal is to accurately collect every position data using gyroscope sensors. We welded a three-axis gyroscope to the PCBA and input battery to make it a simple motion tracker.

Placing the simple device on the tester’s back, our engineers then read collected data the next day and examined ways to improve. After weeks of testing, we were able to separate sleep position data accurately.

Team 3 works on animation modeling and this position simulation is quite challenging for our front-end engineers. Issues include how to create the animation and how to match animation with sensor data of every minute. Thanks to their learning abilities, they finally found solutions and kept refining the animation as shown in the graph.

There is still a long way to go for the final version of this anti-snoring device with the function of sleep position simulation. Follow us for future news and development stories!

anti-snoring

Demystifying the Development of an Anti-snoring Device — Daily log 3

Choose the right material

Hi everyone!

Last time we discussed how sleep experts proved the effectiveness of Positional Therapy. We can see many people DIY their PT items and most of them sew a tennis ball on the back of a T-shirt.

If lying on the back, people will get uncomfortable due to the tennis ball and thus change to a lateral sleeping position. We made some of those as well and called them “anti-snoring pajamas”.

But this is still far from a real product and we recognized two key points to be worked on:

1. Weight.

New users of the “anti-snoring pajama” may not be used to the feeling of having something pulling the clothes during sleep. They may get used to the weight of the tennis ball later, but we want to find out what is the best weight of the PT product.

2. Hardness.

If the ball attached on the back is too hard, users will get uncomfortable. Whereas if it is too soft, there will be no anti-snoring effect. Thus, we need to figure out what is the best hardness.

We first tried the cork material to test the anti-snoring effectiveness. Even though the cork ball is 15g lighter than the tennis ball and reduces discomfort, it has relatively higher hardness and we had to look for other choices.

We then tried other materials with different hardness and weight. We also visited an engineering library with hundreds of different materials.

After months of trials, we finally chose the polymer composite foam (polyurethane foam), which is a lightweight foam material with adjustable hardness (shown in figure). It is also suitable for the molding process of production.

As we find one answer, we still need to address many other questions during the R&D process. Should we keep using the shape of a sphere? What else can we do to improve sleep and snoring? How to quantify and visualize the improvement of snoring? These questions will be answered one by one in future posts. Follow us to join the journey!

Wish you have a good dream tonight.

anti-snoring

Demystifying the Development of an Anti-snoring Device — Daily log 2

Hi, how did you sleep? Did you sleep on your side? If you face snoring or OSA (Obstructive Sleep Apnea) issues, regardless of the severity, we recommend you using a lateral sleeping position based on our research.

In 2008, Professor Jennifer Walsh, Ph.D. and her team conducted an experiment with 11 OSA patients and 11 healthy volunteers (with similar age and BMI). Everyone’s AHI (Apnea-Hypopnea Index) in supine or lateral positions are shown in table 1. It turned out that all test subjects’ AHI lowered significantly after changing positions from supine to lateral.

To discover the reason, they analyzed the OCT (Optical Coherence Tomography) images of the velopharynx and oropharynx in the supine and lateral postures. When awake subjects changed to the lateral position, their airway OCTs had a more circular shape, which can resist airway obstruction more effectively (shown in Figure 1).

In 2002, the team of Shiroh Isono, M.D. also did similar tests. The subjects were initially premedicated with 0.5 mg atropine to mimic sleep status. As shown in Figures 2 and 3, the data supported that lateral position decreases the collapsibility of the passive pharynx in patients with obstructive sleep apnea.

Based on the above findings, we will keep working on new products to improve our users’ snoring concerns. Sleep Medicine is still a relatively new area waiting to be explored. Since relevant researches began in the 1950s, there are still distances between research papers and consumer awareness. And we hope to bring those expert findings to a lovely digital product at your home.

Wish you have a good dream tonight.

anti-snoring, positional therapy, snoring

Demystifying the Development of an Anti-snoring Device — Daily log 1

Hi everyone,

I am Ken, the product manager. My team and I have been involved in the R&D process of SLEEPON products, such as Go2Sleep intelligent ring and SLEEPON App.

It has been 2 years since Go2Sleep entered the market. Based on a 2020 SLEEPON user survey, 76.7% of our users surveyed have snoring concerns, among which 31.4% of them use CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machines. We find that there is an urgent need for an anti-snoring product or method.

Starting from 2017,  we began to research on potential anti-snoring products such as pillows, mouthpieces, nasal dilators, etc. From a 2008 paper Effect of Body Posture on Pharyngeal Shape and Size in Adults With and Without Obstructive Sleep Apnea by Professor Jen Walsh, we learned about Positional Therapy that improves snoring by changing sleeping positions. Professor Walsh tested the effectiveness of this therapy through clinical trials and this method was also backed by many other research papers. That’s why some people DIY a pajama with a tennis ball on the back to manage their sleeping positions.

But only one tennis ball cannot meet our pursuit of creating intelligent SLEEPON products. We hope to create an anti-snoring tool with the ability to record sleeping positions and analyze sleep quality based on Positional Therapy. Everyone can use it at home daily, track sleep quality in the long run, and view treatment results through data. It will be a unique digital anti-snoring product with the function to track, analyze, and provide feedback regarding our users’ sleep quality.

The product development process will be filled with surprise and disappointment. We are not afraid of failure and would like to share our design journey with every one of you. 

Throughout the anti-snoring device campaign/project, we will post our R&D findings on social media which allows you to learn more about us. Follow us for more information and also provide us any suggestions at service@sleepon.us!

All we hope is to bring a better dream for you tonight.

snoring

Understanding go2sleep airplane mode

SLEEPON is always caring for our users. Now the airplane mode function is coming and you can use it next week!

Airplane mode is a new function of the GO2SLEEP ring. This function can make the device automatically in airplane mode and turn off the Bluetooth communication of the device (GO2SLEEP) to reduce the impact of radiation on you.

After the airplane mode is turned on, the airplane mode will be activated or canceled depending on the device is worn on the hand or not. Therefore, the flight mode will affect the real-time detection function (you need to turn off the flight mode to use it).

When you are in the airplane mode, it doesn’t affect all the tracking functions of the device like sleep monitoring, low blood oxygen alert, alarm clock, and other functions.

There are more new exciting functions is coming!

Understanding sleep label

If you’re having trouble sleeping and can’t understand the reason, using the Sleep Label can help identify what’s keeping you awake. Sometimes your sleep troubles are a result of bad sleep habits for example drinking too much caffeine before bedtime, not exercising, or poor sleep hygiene. The sleep label will help to pinpoint if you’re consistently waking at a similar time, what you’ve done that day, what you’ve eaten etc to see if there is any pattern.

Start using a sleep label as soon as you begin to recognize a problem and complete it over a two week period. If you need to see a GP or healthcare professional about your sleep issues you will have evidence of your sleep-wake pattern which can help with a diagnosis and treatment.

sleep label

Understanding sleep debt

What is sleep debt?

The amount of time you sleep is like putting money in a bank account. Whenever you don’t get enough, it’s withdrawn and has to be repaid. When you’re in chronic sleep debt, you’re never able to catch up.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, Americans need about 7.1 hours of sleep per night to feel good, but 73 percent of us fall short of that goal on a regular basis. This is due to many factors, such as school responsibilities, long work hours, and increased use of electronics like smartphones.

Many people think they can make up for their lost sleep on the weekends. However, if you sleep too long on Saturday and Sunday, it’s difficult to get to bed on time on Sunday night. The deficit then continues into the next week.

Chronically losing sleep has the potential to cause many health problems. It can put you at an increased risk for diabetes, a weakened immune system, and high blood pressure. You might also have higher levels of cortisol —a stress hormone. This can lead to anger, depression, and even suicidal thoughts. In addition, drowsiness increases your risk of falling asleep behind the wheel and getting into an accident.

Can you make up missed sleep the next night?

The simple answer is yes. If you have to get up early for an appointment on a Friday, and then sleep in that Saturday, you’ll mostly recover your missed sleep.

Sleep is a restorative activity — while you sleep, your brain is cataloging information and healing your body. It decides what’s important to hold onto, and what can be let go. Your brain creates new pathways that help you navigate the day ahead. Sleeping also heals and repairs your blood vessels and heart.

That being said, catching up on a missed night of sleep isn’t quite the same as getting the sleep you need in the first place. When you catch up, it takes extra time for your body to recover. It takes four days to fully recover from one hour of lost sleep.

Additionally, many Americans who lose sleep do so chronically instead of just once in a while. This creates a “sleep deficit,” making it harder to catch up on sleep and increasing the likelihood of sleep deprivation symptoms.

Tips for making up lost sleep

Not everyone needs the same number of hours of sleep per night. Some people need nine or more, and others are fine with six or less. To figure out how much you need, take stock of how you feel the next day after different amounts of sleep.

You can also figure out how much sleep you need by allowing your body to sleep as much as it needs over the course of a few days. You’ll then naturally get into your body’s best sleep rhythm, which you can continue after the experiment is over.

TIPS FOR CATCHING UP ON LOST SLEEP

If you miss getting in enough hours of sleep, here are a few ways you can make it up.

  • Take a power nap of about 20 minutes in the early afternoon.
  • Sleep on the weekends, but not more than two hours past the normal time you wake up.
  • Sleep more for one or two nights.
  • Go to bed a little earlier the next night.

If you experience chronic sleep debt, the above recommendations won’t help very much. Instead, you’ll want to make some long-term changes.

HOW TO GET ENOUGH SLEEP

  • Go to sleep 15 minutes earlier each night until you reach your desired bedtime.
  • Don’t sleep later than two hours past when you normally wake up, even on the weekends.
  • Keep electronics in a separate room.
  • Think over your evening routine to see if anything is keeping you up too late.
  • Stop using electronics two hours before bedtime.
  • Make sure your bedroom is dark and cool enough.
  • Avoid caffeine late at night.
  • Exercise no later than three hours before you go to bed.
  • Avoid naps outside of 20-minute power naps.

If these steps don’t help, or if you experience other sleep issues like narcolepsy or sleep paralysis, talk to your doctor. You may benefit from a sleep study to determine what’s wrong.

Risks of trying to make up lost sleep

Inconsistent sleep habits can increase your risk for various medical conditions, including:

  • diabetes
  • weight gain
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • bipolar disorder
  • delayed immune response
  • heart disease
  • memory problems

The good news is that getting enough sleep can reverse the increased risk of these diseases. It’s never too late to adopt healthy sleep patterns.

Benefits of getting more sleep when you can

The benefits of getting enough sleep are often overlooked. It might seem like you’re wasting precious working hours if you allow yourself to get a reasonable amount of rest. However, sleep is just as important an activity as anything you do while you’re awake.

Getting enough sleep improves learning and memory. People generally do better on mental tasks after a full night’s sleep. This means that if you get nine hours instead of seven hours, it might take you less time to do tasks the next day because your brain will be sharper. Doing tasks faster then makes it easier to go to bed at a reasonable hour the next night.

Additionally, getting more sleep can help your body stay healthy. It protects your heart and helps keep your blood pressure low, your appetite normal, and your blood glucose levels in the normal range. During sleep, your body releases a hormone that helps you grow. It also repairs cells and tissue and improves your muscle mass. Adequate sleep is good for your immune system, helping you ward off infections.

sleep debt

Understanding sleep stages

There are four stages of sleep: Non-REM (NREM) sleep (Stages 1, 2 & 3) and REM sleep. Periods of wakefulness occur before and intermittently throughout the various sleep stages or as one shifts sleeping position.

Wake is the period when brain wave activity is at its highest and muscle tone is active.

Stage N1 is the lightest stage of NREM sleep.  Often defined by the presence of slow eye movements, this drowsy sleep stage can be easily disrupted causing awakenings or arousals. Muscle tone throughout the body relaxes and brain wave activity begins to slow from that of a wake. Occasionally people may experience hypnic jerks or abrupt muscle spasms and may even experience a sensation of falling while drifting in and out of Stage N1.

Stage N2 is the first actual stage of defined NREM sleep.  Awakenings or arousals do not occur as easily as in Stage N1 sleep and the slow-moving eye rolls discontinue. Brain waves continue to slow with specific bursts of rapid activity known as sleep spindles intermixed with sleep structures known as K complexes. Both sleep spindles and K complexes are thought to serve as protection for the brain from awakening from sleep. Body temperature begins to decrease and heart rate begins to slow.

Stage N3 is known as deep NREM sleep. The most restorative stage of sleep, stage N3 consists of delta waves or slow waves.  Awakenings or arousals are rare and often it is difficult to awaken someone in Stage N3 sleep. Parasomnias (sleepwalking, sleep talking, or somniloquy and night terrors) occur during the deepest stage of sleep.

REM sleep, also known as rapid eye movement, is most commonly known as the dreaming stage.  Eye movements are rapid, moving from side to side and brain waves are more active than in Stages N2 & N3 of sleep. Awakenings and arousals can occur more easily in REM; being woken during a REM period can leave one feeling groggy or overly sleepy.

How Your Sleep Cycle Changes With Age

Sleep changes throughout a person’s life.  From a newborn, through toddler years, school age, adolescence and adulthood, sleep is changing.

Newborn (0 – approximately 4 months) Do not have distinctive sleep waves.  Sleep is categorized as “Active”, “Quiet” and “Indeterminate”. Active sleep is the equivalent to REM sleep and quiet sleep is equivalent to non-REM sleep.  A majority of the time, newborns are inactive sleep which allows for frequent arousals or awakenings; this is necessary for regular periods of feeding.

Infants (Approximately 4 months – 1 year) Standard sleep stage distinction is now apparent.  Sleep becomes more consolidated and sleeping routines can be developed, sleep is typically 10-13 hours per 24 hour period with 2-3 daytime naps occurring.

Toddlers (1 year – 3 years) With sleeping patterns fully developed, children spend approximately 25% in Stage 3 deep sleep with almost an equal amount of time in REM.  the average sleep time is 9.5-10.5 hours per 24 hour period. Typically naps will reduce to 1 per day most likely occurring early in the afternoon to allow for proper nighttime sleep.

Pre-School (3 – 6 years) Sleep time is similar to that of toddlers, approximately 9-10 hours per 24 hour period.  The afternoon nap usually subsides around 3-4 years for a majority of children. Stage 3 sleep still remains high in relation to total sleep time.

School Age (6 years – 12 years) Sleep time remains unchanged; 9-10 hours per 24 hour period and Stage 3 remains approximately 20-25% of total sleep time.  Restorative sleep is important for growth and development.

Adolescent (12 years and beyond) Sleep time for adolescents is approximately 9-9.5 hours per 24 hour period.  There are physiological changes in circadian rhythm that occur causing sleep onset to be later. This internal shift is the cause for many adolescents to have later lights out and the desire to want to “sleep in” in the morning.   As a person ages, the circadian rhythm shifts back, and sleep again appears to regulate to approximately 6.5-8 hours of sleep per 24 hour period as an adult.

The backstory of fingertip holder design

At of the end of 2019, there are already tens of thousand SLEEPON users all over the world, there are about thousands of people who wear Go2sleep ring every night. In the past few months, we have received a lot of user feedback and comments.  

we set out to design Go2sleep SE several months ago with the following goals:

Pursue more accurate data

• Without sacrificing a comfortable wearing experience

• Can fit finger sizes of different sizes

• More intuitive experience

How to get more accurate data?

After a series of studies, we found that the skin of the fingertips is thinner and the capillaries are richer. The actual test data is better than the inside of the finger. In addition, we found that occlude the light also has a certain impact to detect the data. So we took the position of the fingertips as the main wearing position for this design.

After the engineer gave certain data feedback, we set out to design the “fingertip holder” version of go2sleep. We collected a large number of anatomical drawings of the fingers and bones, as well as ergonomic data, as a design reference.

After determining the basic shape of the manuscript, we modeled the design through 3D modeling software. Then print the 3D model for research.

After 6 times of mold modifications, we began to test the hardness and color of the product material and conducted about 20 different hardness tests. After 5 weeks of continuous testing, we finally got the final product.

We designed the diameter of the circle according to the circumference of the fingertips. After the product came out, we found that the feeling of wearing is very tight … After some verification, we found that we ignored a fact: No one’s fingertip cross-section is round! They are closer to an ellipse!

While developing hardware products, we “refactored” GO2Sleep’s firmware to make it compatible with the classic GO2sleep ring and also can switch to the SE version at any time.

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