How does Samsung Health measure Stress? (A guide to Stress Management)

In this brief guide, we will look at the question “How does Samsung Health measure Stress?”, as well as explore what Samsung Health is and how it works. We will also look at some factors that cause stress and how you can control your stress levels after measuring them with Samsung Health.

How does Samsung Health measure Stress?

Samsung health measures stress by assessing your heart rate and other physical signs and symptoms, as they reflect stress levels very well, and when someone is feeling stressed out, their respiration, heart rate, and other vital signs may change accordingly.

Samsung health measuring stress is the latest in companies trying to make mental health a topic of conversation in these difficult times, and this initiative needs to be applauded.

For Samsung health to adequately measure stress, one needs to place their finger on the sensor and be still to let the phone work to assess what the person’s body is telling it, and it will usually not work if your phone does not have a heart rate sensor.

Samsung health app may work very well to measure stress on the Samsung Galaxy devices as it has the right kind of hardware to support this app, which is why it has become quite a popular app among Samsung users.

How to measure stress with Samsung Health?

According to the Samsung website, here are the steps involved in Samsung health measuring stress:

“Open Samsung Health if you haven’t already, and then swipe to the Stress tracker. If necessary, add the tracker to the home tab. When you’re ready, tap Measure on the stress tracker. Agree to the information, and then tap Measure again. If needed, tap Allow, to grant the different permissions.”

“Next, place your finger on your phone’s heart rate sensor. If your phone does not have a sensor, you can measure your stress using your Samsung smartwatch. Don’t press too hard, and make sure you stay quiet and still. Your heart rate (the heart icon), oxygen saturation (the water droplet icon), and stress level will all be measured.”

“Afterward, your status will be displayed. You can enter notes, select your current status, and then tap Save to record the current measurements. You can see your different stress levels by tapping Trends.”

This method is extremely simple and takes away any excuses one may have for not being able to stay on top of their mental health.

One needs to remember however that this app and other things that Samsung user often want to know, like if Samsung health can measure Oxygen Saturation levels in the blood, can only go so far in telling them what they need to know and that intervention and assessment is only most valid when it is sought from a medical professional.

Does Samsung health Measure Stress accurately?

Samsung heath uses Heart Rate Variability, or HRV, to measure stress, as this is something that may be higher in individuals who are suffering from stress, and that means that Samsung health is only so accurate as the sensor allows it to be.

Heart Rate Variability is a measure used to see how much time elapses between each heartbeat, and if there is a lesser time elapsed it may indicate that the person is perhaps suffering from stress.

However, one also needs to consider that Heart Rate variability may also be abnormal in invidious with an underlying heart problem or someone suffering from significant physical problems, and this is the reason why relying solely on the Samsung health app to measure stress may not be a good idea. 

Some specialists also say that smartphone sensors may not be the best thing to rely on to measure stress or blood oxygen and other things, like the researchers at the Center for Evidence-Based Medicine at Oxford University, who say that:

“There is no evidence that any smartphone technology is accurate for the measurement of blood oxygen saturation. Furthermore, the scientific basis of such technologies is questionable. Oxygen saturation levels obtained from such technologies should not be trusted.”

What to do to measure stress accurately with Samsung health?

If you are not getting readings that you think you should, or just want to ensure that you get good results while measuring stress with Samsung health, here are some things you can do, according to the Samsung website:

  • “Make sure the sensor is wiped clean.
  • Remain seated and relaxed until the measurement is complete.
  • Remove the protective plastic from the heart rate sensor before taking measurements.
  • Rest for 30 minutes and then try again if the measurement is very different from the expected heart rate.
  • Do not talk, yawn, breathe deeply, or move your body. Doing so may cause your heart rate to be recorded inaccurately.
  • If the heart rate measurement is not working properly, adjust the position of your finger on the sensor or the watch on your wrist.
  • During winter or cold weather, keep yourself warm when measuring. If heart rate measurements are taken at low temperatures, the results may be inaccurate.”

Symptoms of Stress

The reasons people are so worried and stressed these days are many, from the ongoing lockdown situation to the other crises it has caused, and the general demands of life in a modern society, which makes it extremely necessary for people to know the symptoms of stress in addition to measuring it with Samsung health or other means.

According to Cleveland Clinic, here are the chief symptoms of stress:

  • “Dizziness or a general feeling of “being out of it.”
  • General aches and pains.
  • Grinding teeth, clenched jaw.
  • Headaches.
  • Indigestion or acid reflux symptoms.
  • Increase in or loss of appetite.
  • Muscle tension in neck, face, or shoulders.
  • Problems sleeping.
  • Racing heart.
  • Cold and sweaty palms.
  • Tiredness, exhaustion.
  • Trembling/shaking.
  • Weight gain or loss.
  • Upset stomach, diarrhea.
  • Sexual difficulties.”

Additionally, Stress may also cause a weakened immune system because it causes your body to be in a state of tension all the time, and this may make the individual susceptible to random infections and constant physical problems.

Another thing to remember is that many physical symptoms of stress may also be found in actual physical conditions, so if you are writing off heart or breathing-related issues as just stress, you may want to see a doctor for them as well and ensure that you just need to change your lifestyle and not seek medical treatment.

Samsung Health Measurement of stress: A Review

Samsung health promises the accurate measurement of stress, but to know whether it actually does so is hard without any substantial proof or studies aimed at figuring this out and for this purpose, a journalist at Forbes, Sharif Sakr, gave it a go.

Sharif reports that Samsung health could ideally measure the vulnerability to panic attacks as well if it measures tress accurately across a period of time, and he also reports that he tried to be as regular and proper as possible in the measurement of stress with this app.

Here is an excerpt from Sharif’s report that may give a fair idea of how his experience with the measurement of stress with Samsung Health went:

“However, when I started to keep a log of my stress readings, none of the results made any sense: my stress level was nearly always reported to be low even when I felt stressed out, and then it was reported to be high after I went for a leisurely walk in the park. If anything, the measurements seemed to be correlated with absolute heart-rate, such that they were distorted by even a hint of exercise.”

This would indicate that someone who is aware of their stress levels, in general, did not find it too accurate to measure these stress levels with Samsung Health, which perhaps says something about the app itself, and drives home the idea that anything one discovers through their gadgets must be taken with a grain of salt.

Management of Stress

Whether you find out about stress through a professional, through a gadget, or through just internet research, there are many ways to manage it, and here are some of them:

  • Try to be positive and maintain good relationships with the people around you.
  • Accept that sometimes things can be out of your control.
  • Try to be more assertive about your feelings or emotions, it can make you feel more in control.
  • Try some relaxation techniques like mindfulness, meditation, yoga, or tai-chi.
  • Exercise regularly, as it may better your immune system that may be suffering from stress.
  • Eat healthy, well-balanced meals, and try to reduce red meat and too much protein.
  • Manage your time more effectively by trying to organize your life better.
  • Set your own limits and don’t take on things that are outside of your set comfort zone too often.
  • Make time for hobbies and interests and things that give you pleasure.
  • Get sleep, you can try some sleep podcasts to aid you in this.
  • Don’t drink or do drugs to alleviate stress.
  • Have social support in your life.
  • Talk to a professional and ask about techniques like Biofeedback or other stress management interventions.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we looked at the question “How does Samsung Health measure Stress?”, and explored what Samsung Health is and how it works. We also looked at some factors that cause stress and how you can control your stress levels after measuring them with Samsung Health.

Stress is a part and parcel of life and there are many ways in which it can be caused, and it can have some very adverse effects if it is not controlled in time or if it gets out of hand. 

It is, therefore, necessary to stay on top of your mental health in some way or another so that you may be able to get ahead of problems in a swift manner, and if you have any questions or comments about this subject you can reach out to us any time.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): How does Samsung Health Measure Stress?

Is Samsung stress measure accurate?

Samsung stress measure can be accurate in some cases, but most people have trouble getting it right, and many people have experienced that it may not always be a good measure of stress as it only focuses on heart Rate Variability.

How is stress measured?

Stress may be measured by physiological measures like blood pressure measurement, respiration, heartbeats, and sweating, or other physical symptoms, whereas the psychological measurement of stress may focus more on observation, checklists, self-report methods, and interviews.

How does Samsung health measure sleep?

Samsung Health measures sleep through an automated tracking feature that starts working when once one puts down their device and turns in for the night, and it will usually start tracking someone’s sleep about 30 minutes after they have gone to bed. 

Of course, the Samsung health measure of sleep rests solely on when the phone is put down, and if you have trouble sleeping after you stopped looking at your phone it will not be able to measure that.

Citations

https://www.samsung.com/us/support/answer/ANS00080574/

https://theconversation.com/dont-call-the-doctor-your-phone-can-now-tell-when-you-are-stressed-27254#:~:text=Samsung%20S%20Health%20Stress.&text=Using%20the%20heart%20rate%20sensor,heart%20rate%20variability%E2%80%9D%20or%20HRV.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/sharifsakr/2014/05/29/samsung-s-health-stress-monitor-hands-on/#558f40ee170f

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