Over the past year and a bit I have been involved with SleepCogni, a project that came from an idea of trying to find a solution to the problem of insomnia. The project has hit Kickstarter this week and I wanted to discuss why, from my point of view I got involved.
To Check Out the Kickstarter campaign click here
1. Healthcare systems around the world spend billions on a solution that doesn’t really work and doesn’t give long term sufferers the solution they crave. CBTi (cognitive Behaviour for insomnia) is seen as the gold standard solution for insomniacs but there are not enough practitioners to be able to help all the sleep sufferers out there. When the inventor of SleepCogni Richard Mills came to me and explained that as an insomniac himself he was fed up with the condition and with sleeping pills and that he wanted to develop a product based on CBTi my interest was piqued.
2. A lot of products that claim to measure sleep patterns are not very accurate. Most sleep measurement products out there use an accelerometer to decide which part of the sleep cycle you are in. The problem with this is that you end up with quite a wide algorithm; and something which is measuring movement rather than sleep. We wanted to add heart rate, skin temperature and response time to an accelerometer to give a more accurate indication of where you are in your sleep cycle.
3. Lots of products and apps, from Sleepcycle, to Fitbit, to Sense to jawbone can tell you that you are not sleeping but do not offer you a solution. They will say last night you had 5 hours, or you have a sleep score of 5 and not give you a solution, beyond basic sleep hygiene advice to solve your issue. SleepCogni’s aim is to give you a pre sleep routine that is unique to you and your physiological condition to give you a solution to any sleep issues you might be having.
4. The credibility of the team. From the founder Richard (who has already developed a healthcare product, with the Swellaway), to Dr Irshaad Ebrahim the Medical Director of The London sleep Clinic, to Dr Mann Van Der Werken, a leading figure in the world of chronobiology and the head of our work around light and sleep and not forgetting Martyn Ware, legendary member of bands such as Human League and Heaven 17 and also a renowned authority on Soundscapes, who has led the aural aspect of the SleepCogni. Every member brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to creating a product that wants to change the world.
5. The clinically driven approach to developing the product. As someone who has developed and sold sleep products for many years one of my bug bears is the lack of science and medical knowledge that goes into the development process. From the start Richard made it clear that this would be a process of clinically proving the claims we are making. Our first small pilot study in conjunction with Sheffield Hallam has shown that it improved the sleep of 1 in 2 of the participants who took part. As we move through the development process we will continue to carry out clinical testing with our partners at Sheffield Hallam University.