Research includes associations between snoring and sleep apnea, effects of sleep regularity on daytime sleepiness, and non-intrusive heart rate monitoring.


Summary: Sleep Number Corp will present new research at SLEEP 2024 in Houston, showcasing results from four studies using data from its smart beds and the Smart Sleeper Panel, which includes over 468,000 participants. The research highlights the ability of Sleep Number smart beds to provide real-world, home environment sleep data that advances understanding of sleep patterns, disorders, and their health impacts.

Key Takeaways:

  • Smart Bed Data for Sleep Apnea Screening: One study found that detailed sleep data from smart beds, combined with snoring habits and demographic information, can help identify the risk of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) from home, providing a non-intrusive way to alert individuals to possible health issues.
  • Impact of Sleep Habits on Daytime Alertness: Another study revealed that regular, early, and longer sleep can significantly improve daytime alertness in individuals without sleep disorders, emphasizing the importance of maintaining good sleep habits for overall well-being.
  • Heart Rate Monitoring for Cardiovascular Risk: Sleep Number’s research demonstrated a novel method for unobtrusive, continuous monitoring of heart rate patterns during sleep using smart beds, which can aid in early detection of cardiovascular risks.

Sleep Number Corp will present new research at SLEEP 2024 in Houston that will show results of four studies leveraging smart bed data collected in a real-world, home environment, and the Smart Sleeper Panel, a cohort of more than 468,000 Sleep Number smart bed sleepers who’ve opted to participate in sleep science research.

These studies further demonstrate the research capabilities of Sleep Number smart beds to understand the impact of sleep on health and advance sleep science without an in-lab sleep study, according to a release from the company. 

“Sleep Number is continuously introducing data-driven approaches for improved sleep and health care outcomes,” says Annie Bloomquist, executive vice president and chief innovation officer at Sleep Number, in a release. “Our smart bed ecosystem and one-of-a-kind research capabilities can link our data into clinical practices. We anticipate that our continued advancements in the field of sleep research will revolutionize the way chronic sleep disorders and other health conditions are identified, diagnosed, and monitored.”

Highlights of the new research include:

  • Snoring and obstructive sleep apnea associations through the lens of a smart bed platform. This research aimed to examine the relationship between snoring, sleep metrics, sleeper demographics, and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Researchers used Sleep Number smart bed data and responses from an IRB-approved survey distributed to the brand’s Smart Sleeper Panel. The findings revealed a significant portion of people with sleep apnea snore, and detailed sleep data can help identify the risk of apnea more accurately among those snorers. Additionally, data from Sleep Number smart beds, combined with sleepers’ demographic information and snoring habits, can be used to screen for OSA risk from home, creating a non-intrusive and accessible way to alert individuals to possible health issues.
  • Influence of sleep regularity, chronotype, and sleep duration on daytime sleepiness caused by sleep disorders. This study looked at how keeping a regular sleep schedule, the total time spent sleeping, and whether someone is an early bird or night owl can affect the link between sleep disorders and daytime sleepiness. The brand’s researchers coupled longitudinal Sleep Number smart bed data with responses from a one-time survey of its Smart Sleeper Panel. The study found that daytime sleepiness is significantly linked with untreated sleep disorders. How regular, early, or long individuals sleep doesn’t change how sleepy they feel during the day if they have a sleep disorder. However, for healthy sleepers, going to sleep early and sleeping longer was linked to feeling more alert during the day. This suggests that not only is treating sleep disorders important for reducing daytime sleepiness but for those without sleep disorders, maintaining good sleep habits can also make a big difference in how awake and alert they feel throughout the day.
  • Is snoring associated with lower sleep quality? If yes, does that association depend on treated or untreated sleep apnea? Snoring is a common sign of sleep apnea and is strongly linked to daytime sleepiness and cardiovascular health. This research aimed to examine the relationship between snoring and sleep quality in sleepers with treated or untreated apnea. To do so, Sleep Number used objective data collected from its smart beds and survey responses from its Smart Sleeper Panel.

The research suggests that sleepers who snore—whether they are getting treatment for apnea or not—tend to have slightly worse sleep quality than healthy sleepers who don’t snore. And, sleep quality decreases as snoring becomes severe enough to be accompanied by diagnosed apnea. This could suggest that snoring may be a marker for sleep problems, even if the individual doesn’t have a diagnosed sleep disorder.

  • Unobtrusive detection of heart rate dipping during sleep based on force sensors in a smart bed. During sleep, one’s heart rate (HR) typically dips and goes up again in a regular pattern; the absence of this pattern is linked to a higher risk of mortality. Unobtrusive and longitudinal monitoring of HR patterns could be valuable for early detection of cardiovascular risk and to understand the health of sleepers with apnea. In this study, Sleep Number researchers developed an algorithm that estimates HR instantaneously about 92.6% of the time during sleep, allowing them to characterize HR patterns using data from a Sleep Number smart bed. This study demonstrates a novel method for unobtrusive, longitudinal, and accurate monitoring of HR patterns during sleep using a Sleep Number smart bed equipped with force sensors. And, the development of an algorithm that estimates HR instantaneously allows for the characterization of HR patterns, which is valuable for the early detection of cardiovascular risk and intervention for individuals at risk for cardiovascular issues.

“Sleep Number continues to be at the forefront of sleep research, harnessing the power of our wellness technology to uncover new links between sleep and overall health,” says Rajasi Mills, vice president of SleepIQ Health and Research at Sleep Number, in a release. “We are excited about the possibilities of this research as we pioneer new, connected sleep health and wellness solutions.”

Sleep Number’s research partners, the University of Pittsburgh and the American Cancer Society, will also present new studies in collaboration with Sleep Number, which leverage data from the brand’s Smart Sleeper Panel.
To view the study posters, visit sleepnumber.com/science.

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