Sleep mHealth Applications and Behavior Change Techniques Evaluation

Brittany D. Lancaster, Rachel Sweenie, Amy E. Noser, Caroline M. Roberts, Rachelle R. Ramsey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Mobile health apps may be an effective way to increase sleep management skills. Although little has been documented about the content and quality of available sleep management apps, providers often make app recommendations to help with sleep self-management. The objective of this study was to systematically evaluate the content and quality of commercially available sleep apps. Methods: Following a systematic search of the Apple App and Google Play stores, 56 sleep management apps were evaluated. App content was evaluated using the taxonomy of behavior change techniques (BCTs), and app quality was assessed using the Mobile App Rating Scale. Results: Sleep management apps included 0–15 BCTs (M = 6.89) and 0–9 sleep BCTs (M = 4.87). App quality ranged from 2.51 to 4.80 (M = 3.78) out of 5.00. Sleepiest Sleep Sounds Stories, ShutEye: Sleep Tracker, and Mintal Tracker: Sleep Recorder included the highest number of sleep BCTs and highest quality scores. Conclusions: While the content and quality of sleep management apps is variable, the findings are promising as many apps included a high number of BCTs and high quality. Although evidence of efficacy through randomized controlled trials is necessary to establish efficacy, this review can aid in app selection in the interim.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)757-773
Number of pages17
JournalBehavioral Sleep Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2023
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by a career development award (grant no. K23HL139992) and a training grant (grant no. T32HD068223) from the National Institutes of Health.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Review
  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural


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