They’re the must-have homeware item of the moment and admittedly after seeing the Kardashians rave about them, I was intrigued. I am of course talking about a weighted blanket! Weighted blankets aren’t a brand new concept though, although in recent years they’ve become a mainstream luxury they have been used in the special needs community for many years, usually those on the Autistic Spectrum. Since then these devices have been brought to the wider market and have been hailed as sleep aid devices and a great way to reduce anxiety.
Firstly, what is a weighted blanket?
A weighted blanket is pretty self-explanatory. They’re blankets filled with pockets of small objects such as plastic or glass beads, pellets or discs which give them an added weight that is supposed to act as a ‘hug’. Sometimes some blankets are blended with softer materials such as cotton to maintain a more traditional duvet feel. Weighted blankets range in weight, adult blankets usually from around 10lbs to 30lbs and lighter options for children exist. It is said though that weighted blankets are not recommended for infants.
Typically, weighted blankets are sized to an individual however, you can get them to size with standard mattress sizes too. With the main goal to apply soft pressure evenly across your body, they can either come as a blanket with a separate cover or altogether. Personally, I recommend a weighted blanket with a cover as these are easier to wash.
Choosing a weighted blanket
There are many types, weights and colours of weighted blankets to choose from they also massively vary in price. As always, it is recommended to stick within your budget however cheap and exceptionally low priced weighted blankets are not advised as they often have very little to no benefit as the materials aren’t heavy enough for you to feel the benefits.
Ideally, you want to choose a weighted blanket that is around 10% of your body weight. If you fall between standard blanket weights, always opt for the heavier blanket. Have a feel of different blankets before you purchase too, for example, the feel of the material or the type of weight used may impact your use.
I have an ISAAC Weighted Blanket which comes in just under £100 and is incredible. If I have restless legs from running or have had a stressful day I pull the blanket over my duvet and it helps me calm down and sleep well. Here’s the ISAAC Blanket as well as some other recommended weighted blankets.
Benefits of weighted blankets
Weighted blankets can, in fact, benefit anybody, however, there are a few conditions that benefit more so these include;
- Helps in combatting stress
- Alleviates Restless Leg Syndrome
- Aids in Sensory Processing Disorder
- Improves focus with ADHD sufferers
- May improve sleep quality and insomnia
- Supports the elderly
- Recreates a hug
- Helps with chronic pain conditions
- Benefits for depression
- Reduces anxiety (including travel anxiety)
- Helps with fibromyalgia pain
- Promotes calmness and boosts mood
- Can help with PTSD
- Soothes symptoms of panic disorder and OCD
- Helps with stress in pets
- Autism aid
The way in which weighted blankets help is that the weight presses down which reduces cortisol (the main stress hormone) and encourages serotonin production (the happy hormone). It has also been said in studies that it gives the feeling of safety, relaxing and comfort. In other research, it has been reported that users reported lower anxiety too.
Have you got a weighted blanket? If so I’d love to hear your experience with using and which one you have in the comment section below. As always if you find this article of value please share with your family and friends and across social media.