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How Does The Fitbit Charge Track Your Sleep

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The Charge 4 Pushed Me To Run Faster

Fitbit: How To Use Sleep Tools

As a basic fitness tracker, the previous Charge models already checked most of the boxes: measuring steps, calories, floors climbed, heart rate and distance . But that wasn’t enough for more serious runners like me. I’m by no means an elite athlete, but I do run on a regular basis, so having a built-in GPS is high on my wish list. The GPS allows the Charge 4 to map your route during an outdoor walk, run, bike ride or hike without having to rely on your phone.

I’ve gone on a few runs and the Charge 4 has given consistent distance readings on the same route with and without my phone. You can also see a heat map of your route on the Fitbit app, which also indicates the intensity at which you were running based on your heart rate.

The only other Fitbit device that offers built-in GPS feature is the Ionic watch, but it’s now over two years old and I found it too big and bulky to wear on a regular basis.

The Charge 4 tracks over 20 different activities, from cycling to yoga. It’s also water resistant up to 50 meters like the Charge 3, so you can use it for swimming. You can program up to six exercise shortcuts on the Charge 4, but you do have to choose them and sync from the phone app. You can also set it to track your runs automatically, and set goals for things like pace, distance or calories burned before you start each activity.

Discover the latest news and best reviews in smartphones and carriers from CNET’s mobile experts.

Fitbit Sleep Score: Everything You Need To Know

Fitbit wearables are quite versatile they track exercise, double up as smartwatches, and even track your sleep activity. They can log your total time asleep, sleep stages, and even give you a Sleep Score. But what is Fitbit Sleep Score, exactly?

Introduced in 2019, this feature gives you an insight into your sleeping habits and the quality of sleep you get every night. If you are not sure how to interpret the data, however, we are here to help. Here is everything you need to know about Fitbit Sleep Score.

Also read:Fitbit buyers guide: Everything you need to know

How Does Your Fitness Tracker Know When You’re Asleep

Sleep tracking is a big part of what we do at Exist. We currently sync sleep data from Fitbit, Jawbone UP, Misfit, Nokia Health, Apple Health, and Google Fit.

We use that sleep data to look for trends and insights in your behaviour, by adding to it data from your Twitter, Facebook, Swarm, and Instagram accounts, productivity data from RescueTime, GitHub, Gmail, your calender, and Todoist, the music you listen to from last.fm, plus your weight, weather, exercise, nutrition, and location data.

I dived into some research to work out what’s going on when you set your Jawbone UP or Fitbit to sleep mode. Both devices use accelerometers to track your movements, including the speed and direction of your motion. This is how they track your activity during the day, and how they tell when you’re asleep.

When you set your Fitbit or Jawbone UP device to “sleep mode,” it monitors your movements. When you sync your device the next morning, the software translates those movements into sleep data. If you’ve ever edited your sleep times the next morning, you’ll have seen a glimpse into how this worksdata about your movement during “awake” time gets re-analysed when you tell the software you were actually asleep then, and you then see it charted as sleep data.

This method of using a device to track movements in order to measure sleep is called actigraphy.

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Difference Between Dnd And Sleep Mode On Fitbit

The Do Not Disturb setting is used when you dont want to be interrupted by calls, notifications, and alerts. When you turn the DND on, reminders to move, notifications, and goal celebrations dont make the screen turn on or the watch to vibrate.

Basically, Do Not Disturb mode automatically turns your device completely silent, and all goal celebrations, notifications, and reminders are muted.

On the other hand, the Sleep mode is meant to monitor your sleep. When the Sleep mode is on, the screens brightness is set on dim, and notifications dont wake the screen or cause the watch to vibrate. However, you cannot turn on the Sleep mode and Do Not Disturb simultaneously.

You can turn on the DND feature and Sleep mode at the same time.

Does Fitbit Log Daytime Sleep

Fitbit Charge, Hands On Review

Yes, the device can log daytime sleep as well, as long as it follows the same characteristics it lasts for approximately an hour, with no movement being detected. Just like the sleep logs recorded throughout the night, you can find the information on naps in sleep history .

With certain devices, you might have to stop logging nighttime sleep, in order for naps to be recorded. Regarding the sleep history, this can be edited as you might wish. If the device has recorded sleep inaccurately, you can always delete the logs in question.

Are there different types of logging?

The answer is yes. Depending on your personal preferences and needs, the Fitbit device can log either in a normal or sensitive mode. The first will offer basic information on sleep patterns, detecting movements in an automatic manner .

The sensitive logging is more advanced, recording even the slightest movement, as well as the time you have spent awake or the restless state of sleep. This is recommended for those who are worried about their sleep quality it can be used to identify movement throughout the night and, thus, explain why one wakes up tired despite having logged all those hours of sleep.

Note: Fitbit devices might have different logging settings available.

Also Check: Sleep Deprivation Serotonin

Try Changing Your Fitbit Wrist Position Or Setting

Try wearing your Fitbit on your non-dominant hand Or wear it on the inside of your wrist rather than the outside.

Regardless of the position of your Fitbit, always wear it in a snug wristband while sleeping.

How to change your Fitbits wrist dominance

  • Open the Fitbit app and tap on the Today tab.
  • Select your profile picture or icon.
  • Choose your Fitbit device name from the list.
  • Look for Wrist or Wrist Placement and tap it, then change its setting.

    The dominant setting makes your Fitbit less sensitive to movements since you use it more often.

    Conversely, the non-dominant setting makes your Fitbit more sensitive to movements since you use it less often for everything, like eating or writing.

    How To View Sleep Tracking Data On The Watch

  • In addition to tracking your sleep data in the app, you can also access this information from the watch face itself.
  • Press the left side button to wake up the screen.
  • Scroll up from the bottom of the screen until you see Today.
  • Scroll up until you get to the sleep icon .
  • Scroll to the left once to see minutes awake, minutes in REM, light, and deep sleep.
  • Scroll to the left again to see total hours slept and a graph of your sleep over the last seven days.
  • There’s really nothing to tracking your sleep with a Fitbit tracker beyond simply setting up the app and wearing the device to sleep. Just be mindful of your band since improper placement can effect the tracking. As long as it’s secure on your wrist and the battery is fully charged, you’ll get a reading automatically. Then, have fun exploring all of the details you can get from the app, including tips and advice as well.

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    How Is The Sleep Score Calculated

    Your overall nightly sleep score is based on your heart rate, time spent awake or restless, and your sleep stages.

    You must be able to see your heart rate and sleep stages to see your sleep score.

    • 50% of the score comes from time asleep. It is not based on the time you spend in bed. If you are awake in bed or wake up several times in the night, your sleep score will drop.
    • 25% of the score comes from time spent in deep and REM sleep.
    • 25% of the score comes from how much time your heart rate is below your resting heart rate and how restless your sleep was. These combined factors are called Restoration.

    All this goes into an algorithm, and you get a sleep score.

    How To Improve Your Fitbit Sleep Score And Your Habits

    Fitbit Sleep Tracking

    If your results are not the best, you might be asking how to improve your Fitbit Sleep Score and your sleeping habits along with it. The obvious applies. One of the best things you can do is have a regular sleep schedule and get at least seven hours of sleep every night. This will positively affect your mood and concentration and improve your score 50% of the Fitbit Sleep Score is based on the time you spend asleep.

    The National Sleep Foundation also recommends avoiding afternoon naps, having a relaxing bedtime routine, and exercising regularly. On the other hand, Fitbit claims exercising earlier in the day will have a positive effect on your sleep. It also recommends tracking your caffeine intake and using the Relax app to wind down before going to bed.

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    Overview Of Included Studies

    and present the extracted details of each qualifying study involving nonsleep-staging and sleep-staging Fitbit models. Participants were diverse: normal sleepers as well as persons diagnosed with periodic limb movement in sleep , obstructive sleep apnea, sleep-disordered breathing , central disorders of hypersomnolence , insomnia , and depression , and Huntington disease gene carriers . Sample size varied substantially between investigations, from 7 to 63 participants, with approximately 77% of them involving more than 20 individuals. Average age was less than 20 years in 6 of the 22 studies and over 50 years in 1 study . Out of 22 studies, 10 were conducted in a sleep laboratory, 11 in the home environment, and 1 either at home or in a hotel, based on the participants preference.

    How Does Fitbit Measure Heart Rate

    Similar to how we covered the tech for the Apple Watch heart rate monitor, let’s give a quick breakdown to how pretty much all wrist-based heart rate monitoring works.

    Photoplethysmography essentially works upon one simple premise: blood is red because it reflects red light and absorbs green light. So by using green LEDs and pairing them with photodiodes, Fitbit uses its own in-house PurePulse technology to detect the amount of blood flowing through the wrist.

    When your heart beats, this flow, and as a result the green light being absorbed is greater. These lights are then flashed hundreds of times per second in order to gain the most accurate BPM data.

    Naturally, while every company dabbling with this optical sensor technology is working from the same blueprint, the accuracy of the readings will come down to how each company’s algorithms interpret the data.

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    Check Heart Rate Settings

    Your Fitbit combines heart rate and movement data to develop a more accurate picture of your sleep cycle.

    And seeing sleep stage information depends on your Fitbit getting consistent heart rate information.

    When your Fitbit cannot access consistent heart readings, you get a sleep report that only shows the basic informationtime asleep, awake, and restless.

    Additionally, you wont see sleep stage info when you sleep for less than 3 hours.

    While Fitbit turns heart-rate tracking on by default, its a good idea to check that you didnt accidentally turn it off.

    Also, occasionally the Auto setting does not workso we suggest you set your heart rate using the ON position rather than auto.

    There is no way to turn off heart-rate tracking on Fitbit Sense or Fitbit Versa 3, so you can skip this one.

    To turn on your Fitbits heart rate tracking

    • On your Fitbit, open the Settings app > Heart Rate and if off, tap to turn the setting On. If its already on, switch it off, wait a few seconds, and switch it back on.

    For Fitbit Alta HR and Fitbit Charge 2, turn on heart-rate tracking in the Fitbit app

  • Open the Fitbit app and tap the Today tab.
  • Tap your profile icon or picture.
  • Choose your Fitbit device from the list.
  • Tap Heart Rate and tap to turn the setting to On. If its already set to on, switch it off, then sync your device. After syncing, switch it back on and sync again.
  • How Do Your Sleep Stages Stack Up

    Will Fitbit

    When you click on the sleep tile from your Fitbit dashboard and then choose Today, youll be able to see how much time you spent in each sleep stage and what percent of your total nights sleep that stage constituted.

    On average, light sleep will take up about 50 to 60 percent or more of your night. Whether you get more or less light sleep isnt really going to affect how you feel too much, because its just whatever time is left thats not spent in deep sleep or REM, says Grandner. Its sort of the remainder.

    Deep sleep, on the other hand is likely to take up 10 to 25 percent of your sleep. Theres no real way to get too much deep sleep, says Grandner. Your body has its own natural drive for it, so once you meet that, the need will dissipate and youll just start going into REM and light sleep.

    Too little, on the other hand, and sleep becomes unrefreshing. The two main things that can lead to less deep sleep is agepeople naturally get less as they get olderand anything that interferes with your sleep, like pain, illness, medical problems, sleep apnea, and other sleep disorders, says Grandner. They can keep you out of deep sleep artificially, which makes your sleep a little more shallow. Also, shift work. Your body wants to get into deep sleep at night, and it wants to avoid deep sleep during the day, says Grandner. So you have a natural delay of how long it will take you to get into it.

    Also Check: Nasal Strips Sleep Apnea

    How Do I Track My Estimated Oxygen Variation In The Fitbit App

    Estimated oxygen variation is an approximation of the changes in your blood oxygen saturation levels. Your blood oxygen saturation level is the percentage of your blood thats saturated with, or contains, oxygen. Typically, your blood oxygen saturation level is between 95100%, which means your blood is carrying as much oxygen as it can. The oxygen levels in your blood tend to remain relatively constant, even during exercise and sleep. If you stop breathing or have lung issues, your blood oxygen saturation level can fall as less oxygen enters your body .

    Note that your Fitbit device is not intended for medical purposes. Consult your health care professional about any questions or health issues you may have.

    EOV tracking is available on these Fitbit devices:

    • Fitbit Charge 3
    • Fitbit Sense
    • Fitbit Versa series

    Your Fitbit device tracks your EOV while you sleep using red and infrared sensors on the back of the device. The sensors shine red and infrared light onto your skin and blood vessels, using the color of the light that bounces back to approximate how much oxygen is in your blood:

    • Richly oxygenated blood is red and reflects more red light than infrared light.
    • Poorly oxygenated blood is bluish red and reflects more infrared light than red light.
  • in the Fitbit app, tap the sleep tile .
  • Tap a sleep log and swipe to find your estimated oxygen variation graph.
  • What To Consider When Purchasing A Sleep Tracker

    Well break down some of the top things to look for when purchasing a sleep tracker. While all of these factors matter to a certain extent, some may not be high priorities for you. Assessing what you want in a tracker can help you hone in on the most important aspects.

    Sleep Tracking: Sleep trackers capture an array of data that may include heart rate, heart rate variability, respiration, snoring, time awake, time sleeping, sleep interruptions, and body temperature. Some may also monitor room temperature, humidity, noise level, and light. Since trackers vary in what sleep-related factors they detect, shoppers should pay attention to the specific product details to find an option that collects the information that interests them most.

    Sleep Analytics: Sleep analytics use the data from sleep tracking to delve more deeply into sleep quality and patterns. They may provide detailed charts to show you how your sleep has changed over time, overlay multiple sets of data to show you how different factors are linked, and provide you with a daily sleep score. Wearable trackers can also link your daily activity levels to the quality and duration of your sleep.

    Other Features: Sleep trackers often come with additional features, like fitness tracking, GPS, coaching, and integrations with other apps. These components may make your device more versatile, insightful, or convenient, but they can also increase the price-point.

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    Why Is Fitbit Showing Me My Sleep Pattern Instead Of Sleep Stages

    According to Fitbit, there are a few scenarios where youll see a sleep pattern instead of the more detailed sleep stages data.

    • If you wear your Fitbit too loose. Wearing it too loose or in a position where it cant get accurate heart-rate data will cause you to lose data. The company recommends wearing it 2-3 finger widths height on your wrist. It should feel secure but not tight.
    • If you didnt sleep long enough. You must sleep at least 3 hours to get accurate data.
    • If youre Fitbits battery is low.
    • If you used the Begin Sleep Now option. You dont need to use this option. Instead you should just wear the device to bed.

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