SOURCE: Big Health

Big Health

September 18, 2014 10:09 ET

Big Health Launches Sleepio, a Sleep Improvement App for iPhone and iPod touch

Sleepio Will Integrate With Apple's HealthKit in iOS 8 When Available

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - Sep 18, 2014) - Big Health today announced that Sleepio, a new app that provides a personalized, evidence-based way to help overcome poor sleep without pills or potions, is now live in the App Store. Designed by world sleep expert Professor Colin Espie (University of Oxford), the Sleepio App aims to help the millions worldwide who struggle with poor sleep by providing a personalized program of proven Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) techniques. These techniques help the user get their sleep schedule, thoughts and lifestyle into shape.

Sleepio imports sleep data from fitness tracking devices such as the Jawbone UP and will integrate with HealthKit iOS 8 when available, to provide users with a clear and current overview of their sleep profile. This data, with user permission, then fuels a highly personalized sleep program to help promote better thoughts and behaviors, all presented by The Prof, your virtual animated sleep expert, and his narcoleptic dog Pavlov. The Prof is there whenever you need him -- a Help Me Now feature provides moment-by-moment help tailored to your current context and the program is customized to each user's problems and progress.

Unlike existing sleep apps that simply track the user's sleep or offer basic relaxation exercises, Sleepio is a revolutionary new type of "digital medicine," backed by gold-standard clinical evidence. In the world's first placebo-controlled randomized clinical trial for a digital sleep program, the course featured in the Sleepio App was shown to be comparable in effect to face-to-face therapy, on average helping long-term poor sleepers:

  • Fall asleep 56% faster;
  • Reduce nighttime awakenings by 63%; and
  • Boost daytime energy and concentration by 58%.

Sleepio is the first product from digital health start-up Big Health, founded by Professor Colin Espie and ex-insomnia sufferer and Oxford graduate Peter Hames. Big Health creates highly-personalized, scientifically-validated behavioral medicine programs delivered via web and mobile. Using tracked data and applying best practice from consumer technology, Big Health is creating the next generation of digital healthcare. By making behavioral medicine accessible, affordable and usable, Big Health aims to provide effective alternatives for those with chronic problems such as persistent poor sleep.

"A few years ago I developed insomnia. Despite the strong evidence behind talking therapies such as CBT, all my doctor would give me was sleeping pills," said Peter Hames, CEO of Big Health. "I ended up self-administering a course of CBT using a book written by sleep expert Professor Colin Espie. Within weeks my insomnia was cured, sparking the idea to use technology to make these evidence-based techniques more accessible and engaging. I connected with Professor Espie and together we founded Big Health, with Sleepio as our first product."

"Millions of people experience sleep problems -- whether that's falling asleep, staying asleep or with the quality of their sleep," said Professor Colin Espie. "Sleepio is a ground-breaking, clinically-proven digital sleep improvement program that uses proven CBT techniques to help users with persistent sleep problems."

The Sleepio App is available for free on the App Store for iPhone and iPod touch or at http://www.sleepio.com/iphone/download/. The app includes 7 days free access after which users choose Instant Sleep Help for $4.99/month, Long Term Sleep Improvement for $149 for 12 weeks access; or continue for free and access the Sleep Diary and Your Schedule features only.

About Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT):
CBT is the leading evidence-based method for addressing chronic insomnia without pharmaceuticals. It focuses on improving your unhealthy sleep behaviors whilst providing techniques to overcome the cognitive factors that drive the vicious cycle of poor sleep -- the 'racing mind'. In trusted reviews of the literature, leading authorities agree that CBT provides lasting, effective relief from a range of chronic problems including insomnia whereas in many cases pharmaceuticals offer only short term help.

About Sleepio:
Sleepio is a ground-breaking sleep improvement program, created by world sleep expert Professor Colin Espie and featuring proven CBT techniques. The digital program is clinically proven to help those with long-term sleep problems make changes to their thoughts, behaviors and lifestyle that help them fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer and feel better during the day.

About Big Health:
Backed by Index Ventures, Forward Partners and several Angel investors, including Esther Dyson, Rob Taylor and Peter Read, Big Health delivers personalized behavioral medicine via web and mobile to the highest standards of clinical evidence. Its products include Sleepio, the evidence-based digital sleep improvement program.

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