New 'Kids Sleep Doctor' iPhone App Could Help Your Children Sleep Better

Doctors at Evelina Children's Hospital in London have developed a free and easy to use iPhone app that can help parents track their children's sleeping patterns.

It is hoped that the app will go some way to helping the two million parents that the BBC reports have concerns about their children's sleep.

Developed in-house by a team of experts at the hospital the app allows parents to simply 'draw' their children's sleeping times. These are then recorded day by day and can show you an overview of how much rest your child is getting.

The app then compares this with children of a similar age, giving parents a wider view.

It contains suggestions for dealing with common problems like night terrors or teens that simply won't go to bed.

To help try and get to the root of the problem the app asks you to enter in other information such as how much caffeine they have before bed, the activities they do in the afternoon and evenings etc.

Professor Paul Gringras who works at the hospital spoke to the BBC saying, "Take a 5-year-old who suddenly is waking up every night screaming, doesn't recognise parents and pushes them away."

"The app would say it is like a night terror and will happen in 10% of children in this age range and they will grow out of it, but they can also try a technique called scheduled waking half an hour after they have gone to bed."

Interestingly this app doesn't make use of Apple's newly announced ResearchKit software, however it seems likely that apps like these will utilise the open-source software soon.

ResearchKit simply uses the sensors and the iPhone as a research gathering tool, whether it's filling in a form or carrying out tests. The information is then anonymously shared with researchers and educational establishments in the hopes of better understanding some of the world's largest and most common health conditions.

The app is free to download via the Apple App Store today and will be available on Android and Windows Phone soon.

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