How do you relax each evening? Do you like to take a nice, hot bath? Do you pour yourself a glass of wine and read a good book? For many people, a weighted throw blanket has become a routine part of stress relief and healthy sleep habits. This is for good reason! Research suggests weighted blankets may benefit people with Insomnia, Anxiety, and Autism, among other conditions. Plus, they’re so cozy and comfy!
What is a Weighted Blanket?
Essentially, a weighted blanket is exactly what it sounds like- a heavy blanket. When you’re stressed, your heart beats too quickly. You’ve probably felt like your heart was going to beat out of your chest before a particularly nerve-wracking event. When this happens, lowering your heart rate can lead to relief and an overall feeling of calmness. Pressure calms you by activating your parasympathetic nervous system, which lowers your heart rate. This lower heart rate leads to feeling calm and readiness for sleep.
Weighted blankets vary in size, shape, color, and material, depending on what you prefer. They’re usually filled with tiny plastic or glass pellets to make them heavier. Some blankets have just a few extra pounds on them, making them an ideal weighted blanket for kids. Others may have 20 or more pounds added, which are better suited for adults who want a serious hug.
4 Weighted Blanket Benefits
Research shows that being covered with a weighted blanket creates a type of physical connection that has an abundance of positive effects on the hormones that regulate our nervous system, affecting both mood and stress level. Those with these four conditions have been shown to enjoy the most benefits.
#1 Anxiety If you asked many people why they have this product, they would say they have a weighted blanket for anxiety. Your nervous system controls your breathing, heart rate, sweat, and more. Based on what’s going on around you, your autonomic nervous system prepares your body for stress or rest. You have probably heard this referred to as the “fight or flight response.” The pressure of weighted blankets puts your autonomic nervous system into “rest” mode. A weighted blanket for anxiety reduced some of the main symptoms, such as a quickened heart rate or breathing. This can provide an overall sense of calm to Anxiety sufferers.
#2 Sleep Disorders About 20 million Americans have trouble falling asleep occasionally and another 40 million people have long-term, chronic sleep disorders. This disorder may or may not be related to stress making it difficult to fall asleep. Because the pressure from a weighted blanket prepares your body for rest by calming your heart rate and breathing, it helps your body to calm down enough to get the sleep you so desperately need. After a night with a weighted blanket, you can wake up feeling refreshed.
#3 Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) Children with ADHD have a hard time sitting still and concentrating. Weighted blankets for kids can help with this struggle. By activating the sense of touch, the weighted blanket keeps children from becoming distracted by other sensory stimuli in their environment, such as sounds. This can help them improve their attention, fidget less, and stay on a task.
#4 Autism When someone has Autism, social interaction can be hard for them. This can lead to anxiety and stress, as well as make it harder to function. The pressure from the weighted blankets can relieve stress for people with Autism and improve their ability to focus on the task at hand, very similar to those with anxiety or ADHD. Individuals with Autism may also feel like sensory stimulations around them, such as loud noises, are too intense. The pressure from a weighted blanket can actually help provide comfort from this feeling and allow them to relax and fall asleep easier.
The Best Weighted Blankets at City Mattress
A weighted blanket uses “pressure therapy,” using a calm-inducing amount of pressure on your entire body. It feels similar to the feeling of being hugged, swaddled, or gently held. The right size and weight of a weighted blanket depend on the person’s needs. This is why we carry many options here at City Mattress, both weighted blankets for adults and kids.
One of our most popular options is the Hush 2-in1 Grey Weighted Blanket. This bundle provides two seasonal covers for your weighted blanket. The cooling cover, perfect for summertime or year-round for hot sleepers, wicks away moisture and keeps sleepers cool with a proprietary blend of bamboo and cotton. The classic cover, made of a blend of soft and cozy materials, is perfect for cooler months or sleepers who tend to be chilly. We also recommend the Malouf Anchor Weighted Blanket. It is available in 12lb, 15lb or 20lb weight. We have several weighted blankets for kids including the PureCare Zensory kids Weighted Blanket with Duvet Cover. Filled with hypoallergenic, premium glass beads that won’t absorb moisture, this children’s anxiety blanket weighs in at seven pounds for the perfect amount of contoured compression. Including a velveted-fleece and Tencel duvet cover, it’s both ultra-soft and easily machine washable.
A weighted blanket can help calm a restless body, reduce feelings of anxiety, and improve your overall sleep. When choosing a weighted blanket for yourself, find a snug size that’s around 10 percent of your body weight. If you have any further questions, our Sleep Experts are here to help!