According to the Food and Drug Administration, approval of NightWare allows it to be marketed as an aid in temporarily reducing nightmares-related sleep disturbance in adults, including those who suffer from nightmare disorder, or who suffer from sleep dysfunction due to PTSD.
The app uses sensors on Apple Watch to monitor body movements and heart rate during sleep, which are analyzed and used to create a sleep profile for the patient.
And if it is revealed that the patient is going through a nightmare, by comparing the movements and pulse with the sleep profile, the Apple Watch vibrates to disable bad dreams, maintain sleep, and get him out of the nightmare.
The app’s testing – which lasted 30 days and included 70 patients – concluded that it was successful in improving sleep quality for those suffering.
NightWare is an app, but not readily available for anyone to use, is available by prescription only, and aims to be used with prescription PTSD medications and other treatments, and under the supervision of a healthcare provider.
Moreover, the FDA warns that patients who walk during nightmares should not use the app, nor should it be used while reading or watching TV to prevent false alerts.
The new app is a low-risk treatment that uses digital technology in an effort to provide temporary relief from sleep disturbances associated with nightmares.
According to the National Center for PTSD, between 71 percent and 96 percent of people with PTSD have nightmares.
Apple Watch acts as a wearable device to monitor functional health, and Apple Watch Series 4, Series 5, and Series 6 allows the wearer to take an electrocardiogram. To better understand heart rhythms and the possible warning signs.
And earlier this year, Apple added a blood oxygen meter to its Apple Watch Series 6 to enable wearers to measure current blood oxygen levels.
These new capabilities could be a timely addition in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.