Is artificial intelligence the secret to better sleep?

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Artificial intelligence has found its way into drug development, surgery and medical advice – and now it's helping people improve the quality of their sleep.

The Artificial Intelligence in Sleep Medicine Committee, part of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, recently published an article highlighting how AI is contributing to the field sleep medicine.

The committee looked at how AI helps in three areas: clinical applications, lifestyle management and public health.

WHAT IS ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (AI)?

Clinical applications include using AI to diagnose and treat sleep disorders, while lifestyle management focuses on using consumer technology to track sleep data.

In the third area, public health, AI technology is revealing a new approach to public health regarding sleep, according to Dr. Anuja Bandyopadhyay, chair of the Artificial Intelligence in Sleep Medicine Committee at Riley Children's Hospital, Indiana University School of Medicine.

Artificial intelligence has found its way into drug development, surgery and medical advice – now it's helping people improve their sleep quality. (iStock)

“Good quality and quantity of sleep is essential for good health,” Bandyopadhyay said in an interview with Fox News Digital.

“Like sleep medicine doctorsWe've been recommending this for years, but sleep is often the first thing to be sacrificed to free up time for other competing interests.”

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For years, patients didn't have access to tools to track their sleep or sleep habits, Bandyopadhyay said — making it difficult for doctors to get the data they need to assess the quality and quantity of sleep.

“With the advent of AI“We now have the ability to track sleep, identify patterns and recognize changes in other physiological parameters that can inform the doctor if something is wrong,” she said.

“At the same time, this technology can help patients track their sleep and understand their sleep habits in a better way, allowing them to make positive changes for their own benefit.”

6 examples of AI in action for better sleep

Bandyopadhyay shared some specific examples of how AI can be used to help improve the quantity and quality of sleep.

No. 1 – Personalized sleep monitoring

“AI-powered devices can monitor sleep patterns more accurately wearable technology and smart devices,” Bandyopadhyay told Fox News Digital.

Man sleeping smartwatch

“AI-powered devices can track sleep patterns more accurately through wearable technology and smart devices,” a sleep expert told Fox News Digital. (iStock)

“They can analyze data such as movement, heart rate and breathing to gain detailed insight into sleep quality.”

No. 2 – Diagnosis of sleep disorders

AI algorithms can help diagnose sleep disorders such as insomnia, sleep apnea and narcolepsy by analyzing large data sets from sleep studies more efficiently than traditional methods, the expert noted.

No. 3 – Sleep recommendations

“AI can provide personalized sleep recommendations based on individual sleep patterns, lifestyles and health data,” Bandyopadhyay said.

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“This may include advice on sleep hygiene, optimal sleep times and relaxation techniques.”

No. 4 – Predictive analytics

AI can predict potential sleep problems by analyzing patterns and data trends, allowing people to take preventative measures before problems become serious.

Woman tracking sleep

“AI can be integrated into smart home systems to create environments conducive to better sleep,” said the sleep expert. (iStock)

No. 5 – Smart sleep environments

“AI can be integrated into smart home systems to create suitable environments sleep better” said Bandyopadhyay.

These may include recommendations for adjusting lighting, temperature, and sound based on individual sleep cycles.

No. 6 – Integration of mental health care

“Given the strong link between sleep and… mental healthAI can help by providing holistic health insights and integrating sleep data with mental health assessments to provide comprehensive wellness solutions,” said Bandyopadhyay.

Risks, limitations of using AI for sleep

While advances in AI technology have been shown to help people optimize everyday tasks and functions, experts urge caution.

“It is still a complex algorithm that requires sufficient training and supervision,” Bandyopadhyay said.

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“It would be naive to assume that AI can be autonomous and replace clinical expertise.”

All sleep disorders are different, the expert noted, with differences in symptoms and responses to different therapies.

“It's not a one-size-fits-all solution,” she says. “Therefore, it may not be a good idea to rely solely on an AI-enabled algorithm to diagnose complex conditions.”

Woman smartphone alarm

Using AI to aid sleep can help reduce physician burnout and improve access to care, experts say. (iStock)

According to Bandyopadhyay, it is also important to have layers of security in place so that AI can be used responsibly without compromising patient privacy.

“As generative AI gains popularity, we also need to consider ethical issues and discuss who is responsible for clinical content or decisions,” she added.

Future of AI in sleep medicine

Sleep medicine is 'well positioned' for this Build in AIsaid Bandyopadhyay, because it involves interpreting body signals and “complex psychosocial processes” that interact with the environment.

“AI forms the perfect triad between clinicians and patients.”

“Untreated sleep disorders can lead to adverse cardiometabolic and neurocognitive outcomes, making the ability to meaningfully monitor a person's sleep and use that clinical data to improve sleep a critical need for our field,” she said.

If used properly, AI can also help reduce physician burnout and improve patient access to care, she said.

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“In the US, the estimated patient-to-physician ratio among sleep medicine physicians is 43,000 to 1,” Bandyopadhyay noted.

“There are not enough doctors, and that leads to poor access to care.”

Human brain electrodes

In the U.S., the estimated patient-to-physician ratio among sleep medicine physicians is 43,000 to 1, according to one expert. (iStock)

“If I had a tool that could help me screen my patients for poor sleep quality or quantity, summarize that data for me, help me document my conversations with the patient, and alert me if my patient is not using the therapy as prescribed, Then I could certainly devote all my time and effort to improving the care I provide to my patients.”

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While AI is a powerful tool, Bandyopadhyay says doctors should ensure they use it for “the right patient and the right case.”

“AI forms the perfect triad between doctors and patients, bridging the gap and enabling patients and doctors to optimize good sleep health.”

For more health articles, visit www.foxnews.com/health.

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