Vermont Patent of the Month – July 2022

Sleep is crucial to our health. It impacts our day-to-day well-being, our productivity, our memory, our mood, and our long-term health. Unfortunately, it’s very easy to lose sleep or have insufficient sleep. To make matters worse, medicine that helps us fall asleep often leaves us feeling groggy, sluggish, or somehow unrested the following day. REMmedy, Inc. has addressed this long-felt issue, using the age-old behavioral psychology method of pavlovian conditioning.

Their pavlovian sleep induction offers users the ability to train themselves to fall asleep in response to a particular scent.The sleep conditioning kit uses physiological sensors to detect when the user transitions into different stages of sleep. As a function of this sensed data, an automatic scent diffuser is actuated and then later deactivated. Specifically, the scent diffuser is activated when the sleeper enters a hypnagogic state which is the transitional state of consciousness between wakefulness and sleep. The diffuser is later deactivated when they enter 

The sleeper repeats this process every night for at least a week, creating a conditioned reflex association between the scent and their sleep pattern. Then, when they want to fall asleep, they simply manually activate the scent-producing device to trigger the sleep reflex.

This is especially helpful for those who travel a lot and find themselves in different time zones and different environments. If they begin training a week before the trip, they can improve their chances of falling asleep when needed in their destination. Improved sleep, and control over your sleep habits, means improved cognition, health and wellbeing, alertness, and so on. 

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