Tech

There is a hidden feature on all iPhones that can help speed up your sleep leaving people in shock.

The moment you start thinking about going to sleep is game over, you’re in your head. You’re lying there in bed, all but lifeless, not scratching that itch on your leg because it’s only come about because your body knows you want to sleep. What can you do? Sometimes, especially in cases of ‘doom scrolling,’ it’s hard to go to sleep; Apple has a way.

The Sleep Struggle

Every night, people of millions go to bed struggling with falling asleep. There appear to be so many things against us, even with the best intentions of hitting the sack earlier than we are wont to. It is hard to sleep today—from nightly stress and anxiety to modern technology. You will find yourself in bed, simply willing yourself to sleep, and then you pick up your phone and begin scrolling through social media or reading up on the latest news. Known more colloquially as ‘doom scrolling,’ this habit makes it extra, really hard to shut down your brain and drift off to sleep.

But what if I told you there was a hidden feature on your iPhone that might just be a fix for the sleepless nights? This is a very simple yet powerful tool that eases one into restful sleep without using third-party apps or devices, which has been around since iOS 15—but blew people’s minds as far as its effectiveness is concerned.

Magic of Background Sounds

Apple’s fix for it is a feature called “Background Sounds.” It helps iPhone users create ambient noises without having to use other devices, hoping to make an atmosphere that will send one off to sleep. The feature was rolled out in iOS 15 and has been available on all newer updates since.

What Are Background Sounds?

The Background Sounds on the iPhone serve up a variety of ambient noises designed to be played to help mask unwanted environment noise, providing a more tranquil atmosphere. They include:

  • Rainfall: Softly patter downpour provides an assist in your environment by helping to drown out other, more distracting noises.
  • Ocean: Extreme serenity ensues from wave after wave rolling in and out in an undulating rhythm.
  • Stream: The trickling of the stream creates a very serene atmosphere.
  • White noise: Here, it means a type of monotone, soft sound that might help mask other noises around.
  • Pink noise: This is similar to white noise, only of lower frequency, thus creating a deeper but more soothing sound than white noise.
  • Brown noise: This has an even lower frequency than pink noise and provides a deep rushing or rumbling sound that can prove very calming in nature.

These sounds are specifically aimed at lessening the activity of the brain on such irrelevant signals and providing a better opportunity to fall asleep.

How to Access Background Sounds

You can access Background Sounds on your iPhone quite easily. Here’s how you do it:

  1. Make Sure Your iPhone is Updated: First, make sure that your iPhone is running iOS 15 or later. You can check in Settings > General > Software Update.
  2. Open Control Center: Open the Control Center by swiping down from the very top right corner.
  3. Add the Hearing Button: If you don’t see a hearing button in Control Center, you will have to add it. Go to Settings > Control Center and tap on the green plus icon next to “Hearing” to add to Control Center.
  4. Turn On Background Sounds: In Control Center, touch the Hearing button—it looks like an ear. Touch “Background Sounds” to play back the default sound.
  5. Pick Your Sound: To change which sound is playing, touch the name of the current sound. You can then preview a variety of sounds and pick one of your choice.
  6. Volume and Settings: You can also increase the volume of the Background Sounds and set them to play even when other media is playing in the Background Sounds settings menu.

The Science Behind Ambient Sounds and Sleep

Ambient sounds can help one fall asleep, which is scientifically proved. Several researches proved that steady background noise can help an individual to fall asleep quickly, and also he or she can enjoy a deeper and more restful sleep. Here’s why:

Stress and Anxiety Diminished

One major factor that keeps people awake is stress and anxiety. The soft, incessant nature of ambient sound can contribute to reducing the level of stress by creating a distraction-free state that is relaxing and calming, hence reducing cortisol, the major hormone responsible for stress in the human body, leading to a calmer state of mind, and possibly inducing sleep.

Masking Environmental Noise

They can even help mask disruptive environmental noises like traffic, loud neighbors, or your snoring partner. Because the ambient sounds provide constant background noise, they can prevent any sudden noises from waking you when you’re sleeping; thus, therefore, you are able to sleep for a longer period.

Establishing a Good Sleep Routine

Ambient sounds at night are a great addition to your bedtime routine and will tell your brain to slow down and get some rest. One basic tenet of sleep hygiene involves consistency, and having background noise that is somewhat regular helps your body know and learn when it’s supposed to sleep.

Real-Life Experiences and Reactions

Needless to say, when this feature came to light on Reddit, people’s minds were blown. “OMG WHAT KIND OF MAGIC IS THAT,” one user replied. Another said, “Previous Apple employee here. I had no idea this was a thing, never heard anyone talk about it once. Having kids I’ve used videos to do this same thing, knowing this would have been good when I needed it. Thanks.”

Personal Testimonials

Many of them have shared their experiences of falling asleep using Background Sounds. Here are a few testimonials:

  • Emily, 28: “I’ve always had issues falling asleep due to anxiety. Since I came across Background Sounds, I started playing this ocean sound every night and that made all the difference. I started falling asleep quicker and more soundly. It changed everything.”
  • John, age 35: “I live in a noisy apartment complex, and the traffic outside the window could be pretty loud sometimes. I resort to my iPhone’s white noise option as my life saver—the street noise is just droned out, and I fall off to sleep.”.
  • Sarah, 42: “I used to have a white noise machine, but it was big. It wasn’t that easy to travel around with. Background Sounds on my iPhone is really easy. I could take it with me wherever I go and just have it there. It has really helped me relax and sleep anywhere.”

Tips for Maximizing the Effectiveness of Background Sounds

Although the feature is very helpful, there are further things you can do to maximize its full potential and improve on sleep quality.

Create a Sleep-Conducive Environment

Aside from playing Background Sounds, creating a sleep-conducive environment can work wonders. Consider the following:

  • Keep Your Bedroom Cool: A cool room temperature of around 65°F or 18°C is ideal for sleeping.
  • Eliminate Light: Allow dim for sleeping by using blackout curtains or an eye mask.
  • Remove Distractions: Ensure you keep your bedroom clean and avoid electronic devices that keep you awake.

Develop a Bedtime Routine

Having a consistent bedtime routine can signal to your body that it is time to go asleep. Your routine can involve:

  • Winding Down: Devote the last half hour to an hour before sleep to some relaxing activity like reading or taking a warm bath.
  • Avoiding Screens: Signals of sleep and wake might get haywire from screen time. Try not to use screens at least an hour prior to your bedtime.
  • Sticking to a Sleeping Schedule: Go to bed at the same time every night and get up at the same time each morning, even on weekends.

Practice Mindfulness and Relaxation Techniques

Incorporate mindfulness and relaxation techniques into your routine to enhance the possibility of falling asleep. Try these:

  • Deep Breathing: Engage in deep breathing to quiet your mind and body.
  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation: Tense and, thereafter, gradually relax every muscle in your body, upwards from your toes.
  • Meditation: You can meditate through an app or by simply breathing to start clearing up your mind.

The Future of Sleep Technology

The best sleep through technology is only going to get better with enhancing technology. One such measure is the Background Sounds feature by Apple, which offers all the tools to create a regime of soothing sounds leading to a restful sleep. In the future also, we can expect to see much more in this line.

Custom Sleep Solutions

Second, progress in artificial intelligence and machine learning may drive quite personalized sleep solutions. For example, smart devices will analyze your sleep patterns and other environmental factors to recommend specific sounds or adjust the sleep environment.

Integration with Health Apps

Coupling sleep features directly into health apps would provide a better, more comprehensive approach to improving sleep. The apps were better placed in tracking your sleep data and gave insights into habits and patterns that would help in making informed decisions on how to optimize your sleep.

Better Sound Quality

With enhancements in audio technology, we can expect only the most distinct sound quality from our sleep aids. It may well be the case that a very high-fidelity ambient sound can enable even more immersive and relaxant experiences, letting a person doze off to sleep faster while experiencing deeper sleep.

Putting Background Noise to Good Use

Little-known on all iPhones is a feature that helps people fall asleep faster, leaving many people blown away. Apple’s Background Sounds feature generally provides a convenient and effective method of creating an overall environment that calms one down to sleep, hence consequently positively impacting the ability to either fall or stay asleep.

This feature can help one work on mitigating stress, cover environmental noise, or even plan a wind-down after the events of a tiring day. Next time it happens that you are lying in bed, wide awake, wanting to sleep, don’t forget to attempt the Background Sounds. Maybe the little help from your iPhone will give you that restful night’s sleep you’ve been looking for.

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