Walkthrough

Can't Sleep

The easy way to feel energised tomorrow

1. Choose a soundscape

 12 presets containing over 70 instruments and 30 ambient sounds.

2. Press play

Our app will compose brand new music for you every night.

 

3. Tailor the sounds

Enable or disable up to 6 different elements of the sounds to your preference.

 

 

 

4. Listen every night for 30 days

Music improves your sleep gradually. In the first week you may not even notice an effect. Over time you'll see great results.

5. Get more out of life

Complete 30 days to become a better sleeper

30 Day Plan

"Congratulations on taking the first step to improving your sleep and welcome to the introductory program for Can’t Sleep. This program accumulates my academic research from over 100 journal articles on the psychology of music for insomnia. Regularly listen to music at bedtime has the potential to improve your sleep without any side effects. Can’t Sleep composes new, relaxing music every night to help you fall asleep faster and wake up feeling refreshed. It’s easy, convenient and enjoyable. You can complete our 30-day introductory sleep program free using our favourite preset “misty”, and if you seek more musical variation you can subscribe at anytime. So, what are you waiting for? Go through the program and sleep better tonight!"

Thomas Dickson

HOW LONG?

According to research music is most effective when listened to consistently for an extended period of time. Complete the full 30-day introductory program to get the most out of Can’t Sleep and then continue as desired.

WHAT TO DO

At your regular bedtime, place your mobile device by your bed (in flight mode if desired) and either plug in speakers or SleepPhones, or use the mobile device speakers.

  1. Choose a musical theme in the app (such as Misty)
  2. Press play.
  3. Set the volume of your device to a comfortably low level.
  4. If you find the music too distracting to sleep, disable music elements (e.g. percussion or ambient sounds) or if you find your mind begins to wander away from the music, then enable/add more musical elements.
  5. Relax, and drift off to sleep.

HOW OFTEN?
Listen to Can’t Sleep every night at bedtime. If you wake up during the night or earlier than intended, listen to Can’t Sleep again. In the (unlikely) event you do not fall asleep by the time the music has finished, we recommend leaving your bedroom for a low-stimulus activity (such as light reading or a cup of herbal tea) and then come back and use Can’t Sleep again when you’re feeling more tired.

WHAT TO EXPECT:
Listening to music to improve your sleep is similar to building muscles. Initially you may not notice any improvement of your sleep, but over time your sleep will improve. One study found that in 4 weeks, participant sleep quality improved by 35%

TIPS FOR BEST RESULTS:

  • Use Can’t Sleep at a regular bedtime (around the same time every night)
  • Disable device notifications
  • Enable device flight mode
  • Enable night mode or blue light filter
  • Lower device brightness as much as possible
  • Ask your friend to keep you accountable to ensure you use Can’t Sleep every night.

INCLUDED IN THE APP:
Presets: The app contains 12 soundscape presets on and a total of 73 relaxing instruments and 35 ambient sounds.

Musical Elements: ranked from most engaging/distracting to least engaging/distracting sounds
1. Drum: Includes shakers, tambourines and drums
2. Effects: includes bells, chimes and rattles
3. High notes: includes high sounding cello, guitar and flute
4. Bass: includes low sounding cello, guitar and flute
5. Melody notes: middle sounding cello, guitar and flute
Please note that Infants are at risk of overstimulation from music, so only one music element should be enabled at a time. Melody notes are great for babies.

Why Can't Sleep

Why Can't Sleep App

Can’t Sleep is a mobile app that composes endless relaxing music scientifically designed to make you fall asleep faster and wake up feeling refreshed. The app is informed by over 100 research articles on music and sleep psychology. The music is computer generated in real time based your favourite instruments and ambient sounds. The app quits after 45minutes of playtime and does not require an internet connection.

How does Can’t Sleep create music?
The app contains single instrument pitches of different timbres (clarinet, piano, guitar etc) which are mapped to a synthesizer, single percussion sounds (tambourine, bass drum etc), sound effects (bells, chimes etc) and ambient noise (nature sounds). Each of these elements and the instruments themselves can be enabled or disabled.

The app starts by generating a tempo, time signature, melody, bassline and harmony. The app then plays the ambient soundscape and sets up a timer for random sound effects to play (bells etc).

What makes Can’t Sleep a unique listening experience is its constantly evolving music. The music is like the classical style “theme and variation” but the theme is always changing.

The sounds start by creating a phrase of music. As you listen to the music, the notes and instruments slightly alter the phrase of music. These changes are informed by western classical theory (e.g. elision, fragmentation, expansion, contraction, timbre change, tempo change etc) to create subtle and pleasant variations. This new phrase of music is then further altered as you listen. The music continues to change and evolve with time.

We chose this style as a strategy to avoid habituation. If the music were always the same, you would get bored. If the music changed too much it would be distracting or you might zone it out. Subtle variations of the music will keep you engaged but not bored or overwhelmed.

The music will continue to play for 45 minutes and then the app will shut down. Whilst it is normal for most individuals to fall asleep in 10 – 20 minutes (known as sleep onset latency), some individuals with insomnia can take up to 45minutes to fall asleep. Only in severe cases of insomnia do individuals take longer than 45 minutes to fall asleep. This can be due to stress, caffeine or jet lag. If you fall asleep as soon as your head hits the pillow you may be sleep deprived.

About Insomnia

About Insomnia

How common is insomnia?
Insomnia is a sleep disorder characterised by difficulty falling asleep and/or staying asleep, and is a major health issue in Australia, with estimates that nearly one in three individuals are sleep-deprived due to insomnia. One study reported 13% of individuals feel they don’t get enough sleep and 10.6% of people felt their sleep quality was insufficient.

What causes insomnia?
Insomnia can occur due to several psychological factors (like stress, anxiety & depression), physiological factors (like sleep apnoea & restless leg syndrome), lifestyle factors (like alcohol & smoking) and environmental factors (like a noisy or well-lit bedroom). Once someone has experienced insomnia, they can can then worry about it re-occurring prior to going to bed, which can trigger further stress (the fight-or-flight response) and keep them awake for even longer – perpetuating what becomes a very vicious cycle. This is called the “Hyper-Arousal Model of Insomnia” which can turn into a chronic pattern.

How music helps fight insomnia
For centuries, different cultures around the world have used lullabies to help babies sleep. More recently, music psychology research has found music to have the same effect on adults. The right music can help to quiet your mind, distract you from stressful thoughts and relax your fight-or-flight response. If you are in a noisy neighbourhood or sleep with (or near) somebody who snores, music can drown out the sound. Your body might even sync up to the musical beat, helping to decrease your heart rate, breath rate and brainwaves.

Presets

Choose from 18 unique presets containing different instruments and ambient sounds.

  1. Preset buttons to choose what sounds you would like to hear
  2. Custom button to build your own preset
  3. Play button to enable or disable the music
  4. Playback button to view Playback view

Notes:

  • Free Presets - Misty
  • Premium Presets - Baroque | Blue | Cave | Custom | Dunes | Field | Green | New Age | Nightfall | Rain | Room |  Sea | Shuffle | Space | Spring | Vinyl | Water
  • All presets are disable whilst the music is playing. To change presets the music will need to be paused

 

Playback

Play or stop the music and enable or disable elements of the music.

  1. Play or stop the music
  2. Display or hide the soundscape display
  3. Enable or disable the high notes
  4. Enable or disable the melody
  5. Enable or disable the bass
  6. Enable or disable the drum
  7. Enable or disable the ambience
  8. Enable or disable the effects

Notes:

  • The music automatically turns off after 45 minutes, this reduces battery usage whilst you sleep
  • The screen dims based on the duration set in your "Auto-Lock" in the Display & Brightness Settings

Custom

Build your own custom presets from 73 relaxing instruments and 35 ambient sounds.

  1. Switch to enable or disable the instrument, beat, SFX or ambient sound
  2. Hear instrument, beat, SFX or ambient sound
  3. High Notes - High pitch instrument sounds
  4. Melody - Medium pitch instrument sounds
  5. Bass Notes - Slow and low pitch instrument sounds
  6. Drum - Pulsing percussion sounds including bass drum, high hats and shakers
  7. Ambience - 4 minute recordings ambient sounds including rain, water, traffic, fire etc
  8. Sound Effects- Upto 20 second long sound effects including bells, space sounds, cymbals

Tips:

  • When you enable multiple sounds they will cycle. If you want to only hear one sound, then only choose one
  • Each soundscape element is forced to have one sound enabled
  • All sounds are disable whilst the music is playing. To enable different sounds the music will need to be paused

Subscription

Subscribe either monthly or annually to Can't Sleep to access all presets and custom mode.

  1. Monthly subscription button (price per month)
  2. Annual  subscription button (total price per year)
  3. Restore Purchases
  4. Terms of Service
  5. Privacy Policy

Settings

Configure the music you are listening to.

  1. Mode - Choose from Focus, Relax or Sleep mode which alter the speed and frequency of the parts of the music
  2. Vary Ambience - Choose whether to loop or vary the ambience sounds
  3. Average Heart Rate - Listen to music that matches your average heart-rate
  4. Background Image - Change the background image for the Custom Theme

Info

Share or review, access legal, find out about Can't Sleep and Review

  1. Share - Share Can't Sleep with your friends
  2. Review Can't Sleep - Rate Can't Sleep on the App store and help others by sharing your experience
  3. Website - Go to our website
  4. Facebook - Go to our Facebook page
  5. Youtube - Watch our latest videos on Can't Sleep
  6. News - Discover what's going on in with Can't Sleep
  7. Privacy Policy - Read the Can't Sleep privacy policy
  8. Terms of Service - Read the Can't Sleep terms of service
  9. About - View the version number
  10. Credits - A special thanks to the companies who have helped us get where we are
  11. Contact Us - Send us an email if you have any questions about Can't Sleep

FAQ

FAQ

Q: SOME OF THE SOUNDS I FIND REALLY DISTRACTING, CAN I REMOVE THESE?
A: Yes, some individuals find the bells, chimes and tings etc distracting. These can be silenced by disabling the bell icon on the far right in the playback screen. For others, these sounds can help them stop from having wondering thoughts.

Q: I HAD A GREAT SLEEP LAST NIGHT BUT MY SLEEP APP/WATCH SAID I DIDN'T?
A: There are many apps that claim they can measure your sleep quality through your heart rate, breathe rate and restlessness (actigraphy) but this is severely oversimplified. The accurate measure of sleep is polysomnography which records brain activity, eye movements, muscle activity, heart rhythm, respiration and blood oxygen saturation. When comparing polysomnography to personal sleep monitoring devices (such as watches), the personal sleep monitoring devices are quite inaccurate. Smart watches were equally inaccurate when used to measure sleep quality or stages (e.g. REM or deep sleep) but can be used to measure total sleep duration (and then to calculate sleep efficiency). If you wake up feeling well rested but your sleep app claims otherwise, or vice versa, trust how you feel.

Q: AM I THE RIGHT PERSON TO BE USING THIS APP?
A: Absolutely! Everyone needs of a little more music in their lives. Music has no known negative side effects and has no known negative impacts on even good quality sleepers.

Q: CAN I/SHOULD I USE THE CAN’T SLEEP APP AT THE OFFICE OR WHILE TRAVELLING TO WORK?
A: The Can’t Sleep App is great for helping you to fall asleep – but not so good if you shouldn’t be sleeping at work! Probably check with your boss before using it at work. It could also be a great way to de-stress on the train home from work. However, please DO NOT, under any circumstances, use the Can’t Sleep App whilst operating any sort of machinery (including cars), or in any case in which a decrease in attention could cause harm.

Welcome

1. Choose a soundscape

 12 presets containing over 70 instruments and 30 ambient sounds.

2. Press play

Our app will compose brand new music for you every night.

3. Tailor the sounds

Enable or disable up to 6 different elements of the sounds to your preference.

4. Listen every night for 30 days

Music improves your sleep gradually. In the first week you may not even notice an effect. Over time you'll see great results.

How to use Music for Sleep

 Step 1. Making your commitment

 

The first step to a better nights sleep is making a personal commitment to using music the correct way. Scientific researchers have found music to be one of the most effective, if not the most effective non-pharmaceutical sleep aid. If you expect the same sleep improvements as these researchers found, you need to follow their methodology. This means committing to using music every single night for at least 30 days. Music is like a dieting to lose weight, initially you may not notice a difference but sticking it out is where these researchers saw the difference. Surprisingly studies using music as a sleep aid have not been able to find a point where sleep quality plateaued as music use increased.

 Step 2. Using the right tools

 

This one is easy, we've done all the hard work to make the most scientifically based sleep music available. This may not be your favourite music, you may even find it boring but that's because our music is medicine. It's simple, repetitive and unemotional without interruptions to help you disengage from stressful thoughts without being to distracting or engrossing.  I've implemented findings from 200+ songs successfully & unsuccessfully used for sleep to craft the perfect music for insomnia. The best part is the music is slightly different every time so you won't ever need to look for more music. Subscribers get access to three other great features. (1) Set heartbeat - music composed at the tempo of your heartbeat to synchronise and then slow down  (2) Music Builder - choose instruments and sounds that you associate with pleasant relaxing experiences to de-stress (3) Custom Image - choose an image of a place where you have felt relaxed to relive that experience.

 Step 3. When to use the music

 

A crucial part of how music aids sleep is creating an association between music and sleep. To strengthen this association, playing music needs to be the last thing you do before falling asleep. This means listening to the music 'at bedtime', no earlier. The music you use for sleep, should be only used for sleep at bedtime. Do not using this music for any other activity, including napping.

 Step 4. Setting up and playing the music

 

Start by choosing how you want to listen to the music. This can be through the mobile device speakers but preferably high quality speakers or 'SleepPhones'. Then choose a preset (baroque is freely available) and press play. Set the volume on your device to be as quiet as comfortably possible because quieter sounds are less distracting. If you are bothered by external sounds (such as traffic or neighbours), we've included ambient sound recordings so that you can increase the volume of the ambience to drown out unpleasant sounds. If you find the music too distracting or engaging, you can disable elements (such as the high notes) to simplify the music. Our app will automatically turn off the music after 45 minutes.

 Step 5. Engaging with the music

 

I recommend two exercises to help you engage with the music and in turn distract you from stressful thoughts and increase relaxation. (1) Breath Entrainment - synchronise your body to the music by breathing slowly and focusing on exhaling to the rhythm of the music. Enabling 'beat' can help you find the rhythm of the music. (2) Visualization - listen to the ambient sounds and try to imagine where you would hear them. Engage your senses. What would you see? smell? taste? feel? Subscribers can choose from 30+ ambient sounds to relax to.

 Step 6. What happens if the music isn't working

 

Initially you may have trouble falling and staying asleep with the music. This does not mean it isn't working or doesn't work for you. It means you are still developing an association between music and sleep. In this situation, turn off the music and get out of bed. Find a relaxing activity to pass time until you feel tired such as light reading, writing a journal or having a cup of herbal tea. When you are tired again, go back to bed and play the music. It is important that you do not lay in bed awake listening to the music if you cannot sleep, this will impact negatively on the music sleep association. Do not use your mobile device in bed for any other reason than Can't Sleep to ensure the music sleep association is strong.

 Step 7. Other tips to improve your sleep

 

Android & iPhone Device Tips

  • Disable device notifications
  • Enable device flight mode
  • Enable night mode or blue light filter
  • Lower device brightness as much as possible

Other Tips and Advice

  • Go to bed at the same time every night (including weekends)
  • Get some morning sun immediately after waking up
  • Create a strict pre-bedtime routine e.g. "I have a shower, then brush my teeth, put my phone here, turn off the light, play the music, sleep” 
  • Rise at the same time every day, regardless of the amount of sleep the night before
  • Ask your friend to keep you accountable to ensure you use Can’t Sleep every night.
  • If you need to take a sleeping pill to sleep, you should still listen to the music also
  • Only go to bed if you are tired
  • Don't do anything else in bed but sleep and sleep music (don't eat, watch television or read)
  • Cover windows with dark curtains, shutters or fabric
  • Cool room to 20*c
  • Hide alarm clock from sight in bedroom
  • Exercise daily
  • Don't allow pets in the bedroom
  • Don't drink caffeine after 10am
  • Don't drink alcohol
  • Don't linger in bed after waking up
  • Don't spend your day in mostly sedentary activites
  • Don't smoke before bed
  • Don't engage in mentally stimulating or stressfull activies at night-time (e.g. work, video games, social media etc)

Why use Can't Sleep?

 

  • Effective – Built from research for a PhD on music and sleep psychology.
  • Smooth Transitions – No silences between songs or pops/clicks between looping audio.
  • Variety – 12 themes utilizing over 100 instruments and ambient sound recordings.
  • Never Repeats – New music is continuously composed through your phone using our A.I. composer while you listen.
  • Personalized – Enable or disable any part of the music and choose your own music speed.
  • Realistic Sounds – Real audio samples of instruments and ambient sound recordings.
  • Convenient – No internet required after downloading the app and the music stops after 45 minutes (while you sleep).

- Presets Screen

Choose from 18 unique presets containing different instruments and ambient sounds.

  1. Preset buttons to choose what sounds you would like to hear
  2. Custom button to build your own preset
  3. Play button to enable or disable the music
  4. Playback button to view Playback view

Notes:

  • Free Presets - Misty
  • Premium Presets - Baroque | Blue | Cave | Custom | Dunes | Field | Green | New Age | Nightfall | Rain | Room |  Sea | Shuffle | Space | Spring | Vinyl | Water
  • All presets are disable whilst the music is playing. To change presets the music will need to be paused

 

- Custom Presets Screen

Build your own custom presets from 73 relaxing instruments and 35 ambient sounds.

  1. Switch to enable or disable the instrument, beat, SFX or ambient sound
  2. Hear instrument, beat, SFX or ambient sound
  3. High Notes - High pitch instrument sounds
  4. Melody - Medium pitch instrument sounds
  5. Bass Notes - Slow and low pitch instrument sounds
  6. Drum - Pulsing percussion sounds including bass drum, high hats and shakers
  7. Ambience - 4 minute recordings ambient sounds including rain, water, traffic, fire etc
  8. Sound Effects- Upto 20 second long sound effects including bells, space sounds, cymbals

Tips:

  • When you enable multiple sounds they will cycle. If you want to only hear one sound, then only choose one
  • Each soundscape element is forced to have one sound enabled
  • All sounds are disable whilst the music is playing. To enable different sounds the music will need to be paused

- Play Screen

Play or stop the music and enable or disable elements of the music.

  1. Play or stop the music
  2. Display or hide the soundscape display
  3. Enable or disable the high notes
  4. Enable or disable the melody
  5. Enable or disable the bass
  6. Enable or disable the drum
  7. Enable or disable the ambience
  8. Enable or disable the effects

Notes:

  • The music automatically turns off after 45 minutes, this reduces battery usage whilst you sleep
  • The screen dims based on the duration set in your "Auto-Lock" in the Display & Brightness Settings

- Settings Screen

Configure the music you are listening to.

  1. Mode - Choose from Focus, Relax or Sleep mode which alter the speed and frequency of the parts of the music
  2. Vary Ambience - Choose whether to loop or vary the ambience sounds
  3. Average Heart Rate - Listen to music that matches your average heart-rate
  4. Background Image - Change the background image for the Custom Theme

- Subscription Screen

Subscribe either monthly or annually to Can't Sleep to access all presets and custom mode.

  1. Monthly subscription button (price per month)
  2. Annual  subscription button (total price per year)
  3. Restore Purchases
  4. Terms of Service
  5. Privacy Policy

- Info Screen

Share or review, access legal, find out about Can't Sleep and Review

  1. Share - Share Can't Sleep with your friends
  2. Review Can't Sleep - Rate Can't Sleep on the App store and help others by sharing your experience
  3. Website - Go to our website
  4. Facebook - Go to our Facebook page
  5. Youtube - Watch our latest videos on Can't Sleep
  6. News - Discover what's going on in with Can't Sleep
  7. Privacy Policy - Read the Can't Sleep privacy policy
  8. Terms of Service - Read the Can't Sleep terms of service
  9. About - View the version number
  10. Credits - A special thanks to the companies who have helped us get where we are
  11. Contact Us - Send us an email if you have any questions about Can't Sleep

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