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Sleep tracking FAQs

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You can use your Fitbit tracker to see how many hours you sleep and better understand the quality of your sleep. This article answers common questions about sleep tracking. Click on a question below to see its answer:

See How do I track my sleep? to learn how to put your tracker in to sleep mode.

Can I set a sleep goal?

To help obtain a regular, healthy sleep cycle, you can set a sleep goal using the fitbit.com dashboard or a Fitbit app.

To set or change a sleep goal on your computer dashboard, complete these steps:

  1. Sign into your fitbit.com dashboard.
  2. Hover your mouse at the bottom of the sleep tile and click the gear icon.
  3. Add your sleep goal.
  4. Click Save.
To set or change a sleep goal on a Fitbit app, see How do I track sleep with the Fitbit app for iOS?, How do I track sleep with the Fitbit app for Android?, or How do I track sleep with the Fitbit app for Windows Phone?.
For sleep goals, success is determined based on actual calculated time asleep, not time spent in bed.

What is the difference between the normal and sensitive sleep setting?

Your Fitbit tracker's settings can record your sleep in either "sensitive" mode for extremely detailed sleep reporting or "normal" mode for a more basic idea of your sleep patterns. 

  • The normal setting counts significant movements as being awake (such as rolling over) and is appropriate for most users.
  • The sensitive setting will cause your tracker to record nearly all movements as time spent awake. This setting may be helpful for users with sleep disorders, or those who wear their tracker somewhere other than the wrist while asleep.

If your Fitbit tracker is worn consistently each night with the same setting, the data that it produces should be useful.

How do I view and change my sleep mode setting?

To adjust your sleep mode setting, log on to the fitbit.com dashboard. Click the gear icon in the top-right corner of the page and select Settings. Using the navigation tabs at left, find the Sleep Sensitivity setting and choose Normal or Sensitive. Note that you must sync your tracker for the change to take effect.

What do the different sleep states mean?

  • During sleep mode, when your body is completely at rest and unmoving, your Fitbit tracker records that you are asleep.
  • A restless state of sleep indicates that your body transitioned from a very restful position with little movement to movement, such as turning over in bed. This doesn't necessarily mean that you were fully awake or cognizant of your movements, but it may indicate that you were not getting the most restful sleep possible at that time.
  • When your tracker indicates that you are moving so much that restful sleep would not be possible, your sleep graph will indicate that you were awake.

How is sleep efficiency calculated?

We use the following equation to calculate your sleep efficiency: 100 * time asleep / (time asleep + time restless + time awoken during sleep)

The time it takes for you to actually fall asleep is not incorporated into this calculation. If you don't move all night it is possible to get 100% sleep efficiency even if it takes you 20 minutes to fall asleep.

How does my tracker automatically detect sleep?

The Force, Charge, Charge HR, and Surge can automatically detect your sleep.

Autodetection is based on your movement. When you haven’t moved in over an hour, algorithms assume that sleep has begun, which is confirmed by the length of time your movements are indicative of sleep behavior only (rolling over, etc). Morning movement tells your tracker that you’re awake. If you’re not moving but not asleep for long periods of time it’s possible for your tracker to falsely record sleep, in which case you can delete the sleep record from your dashboard.

I wore my tracker to bed, but forgot to activate sleep mode

If you have a Force, Charge, Charge HR or Surge, you don't need to activate sleep mode. These trackers automatically log your sleep if you wear the tracker to bed.

For other trackers, as long as you were wearing your tracker while sleeping, your sleep data is not lost. If you manually log your sleep on your fitbit.com dashboard or in the Fitbit apps, you'll see your sleep log just as if you had activated sleep mode.

Why should I place the Fitbit One or Ultra on my wrist instead of my torso during sleep?

Wearing your Fitbit One or Ultra on the wrist of your non-dominant hand captures your fullest range of motion and gives a more complete portrait of your sleep movement. While your torso may move during sleep, it is usually to a lesser degree and is more difficult to track than the movements of your hand.

If you find that the tracker falls out of your wristband during sleep, we recommend inserting it all the way into the Sleep Wristband pocket and then turn it sideways to secure it.

I don't see last night's sleep graph

If your tracker autodetects sleep, it may take some time in the morning to register that you are awake for the day. Typically your sleep log should appear between 20 minutes to an hour after you wake.

I wasn't asleep when my sleep graph says I was

Although trackers that autodetect sleep are designed to know when the tracker is off your wrist, occasionally they may record a sleep log when you aren't actually asleep. You can delete this sleep log on your dashboard.

I don't think I was awake when my sleep graph says I was

Tossing and turning during sleep can occur during an unconscious state; however, it does not indicate total rest. If you feel that the reported number of times awakened is excessively high, go to the Sleep Sensitivity setting to see if your sleep tracking mode is set to sensitive. A normal setting may be more appropriate if you are looking for a more general overview of your sleep patterns.

Can I log a nap?

Yes. If your tracker tracks sleep automatically, all naps at least an hour in length should be automatically tracked.  For other trackers, simply put your tracker into sleep mode.

Later when you sync your tracker, your nap will appear on your sleep log. 

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Last updated: July 22, 2015
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