If you're thinking about buying weighted blankets for you and your loved ones, know that not all specialty blankets are the same. Checking weighted blanket reviews before choosing one will ensure you get the most out of your purchase.
Weighted blankets became an immensely popular tool not only for sleep but in easing anxiety symptoms and stress. Not only that - many claims that such specialty blankets can alleviate symptoms associated with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Autism, and Post-Traumatic Stress, to name a few.
But what is the science behind all these, and what are its benefits? How did the weighted blanket hype start, what is the best weighted blanket for anxiety, and how do you find the best type of weighted blanket in the market? This guide will cover all these questions.
What Are Weighted Blankets?
Weighted Blankets are special blankets that are heavier than your regular blanket. These duvet-like bed-covers are filled with small plastic or glass beads, making each blanket weigh between 10-25 pounds. The non-toxic and hypoallergenic glass beads for weighted blanket are sewn and self-contained in pockets throughout the blanket for even weight distribution. Such specialty blankets give the sensation of being hugged or swaddled, letting its users feel safe and secured while sleeping.
History Of Weighted Blankets
The invention of weighted blankets started when children with different needs, such as those with Autism and severe anxiety, needed specialized interventions treatment minus the invasive procedures or drug management. Mental health doctors tried and tested Deep Pressure Therapy using heavier blankets and proved that these, indeed can trigger serotonin and oxytocin production. Nowadays, weighted blankets of different types and weights are out in the market, ready for the public's consumption.
Weighted Blanket Reviews: Science Behind Weighted Blankets
We all need proper rest and sleep to live a happy, healthy, and normal life. However, unknown to many is that many things can affect your sleep - light, sound, temperature, security, and comfort. This is why many of us cannot sleep without blankets. We use this to cover our eyes from the light is there is any, to seek comfort and warmth and to feel safe and secured. But for those who have trouble sleeping and have certain medical conditions, weighted blankets can help ease of their symptoms.
While your regular blanket may offer warmth and a soothing and calming effect, these heavier blankets give the sensation of being hugged without feeling restricted. When you use a weighted blanket during bedtime, it helps you fall asleep faster as the added weight helps prevent tossing and turning.
The heavier weight mimics the feeling of being hugged, thus prompting our mind and body to calm down, feel secured, and induce a happy feeling. This is what we call Deep Touch Pressure Therapy that helps the body to produce oxytocin and serotonin.
Oxytocin is a hormone inside our body that helps produce a feeling of comfort and relaxation. On the other hand, Serotonin is a chemical that regulates sleep and wake signals. When serotonin is released, you get to feel more comfortable, making you sleep deep and at a more comfortable level.
With weighted blankets ability to help your body produce more serotonin and oxytocin, the result is you'll feel more secure, thus helping you fall asleep faster and longer and sleep more soundly. These two are what helps ease symptoms associated not only with Insomnia, but anxiety, stress, and other conditions as well.
Weighted Blanket Reviews: Conditions Wherein Weighted Blankets Can Help
According to studies and as per the testimony of its users, everyone can benefit from using a weighted blanket. However, weighted blankets changed the lives of some people with certain conditions, such as the following.
People Suffering From Anxiety And Depression
There are times when we find ourselves extremely anxious, worrying even on the littlest things that can also lead to panic attacks. Such symptoms are common to individuals with an anxiety disorder. ADDA reports that among the 40 million sufferers of anxiety in the US, only less than 37% receives proper treatment. This is a remarkable number of the population since anxiety symptoms are highly treatable. Most people with anxiety also experience depression, which means a large number of people with anxiety are also depressed.
Good Read: 12 Effects of Anxiety on the Body
The thing is, we are not just talking about GAD or Generalized Anxiety Disorder, but all of the other types of anxiety as well. With the help of a top rated weighted blanket such as the Luxury Weighted Blanket & Removable Minky Cover by Rocabi, you can now calm your nerves and feels less stressed and agitated. You might not even need to drink any pills to ease anxiety symptoms.
Children With Autism
Children with Autism have special needs. They often have a severe difficulty of interacting with others, have delayed development milestones, have repetitive movements, have difficulty communicating, and are often clumsy. While therapy for every child with Autism differs, there are symptoms associated with Autism wherein weighted blankets can help address.
Experts believe that deep touch therapy is an excellent way to manage children with Autism whenever they feel stressed, agitated, confused, or overwhelmed. With weighted blankets offering Deep Touch Therapy, the gentle pressure helps them to relax and feel calm, thus easing sensory stressors. This way, they will feel safe and have better control over their emotions.
People With Sensory Integration Dysfunction
Sensory Integration Dysfunction is a condition wherein the individual fails to recognize and respond to information sent by the senses. People with such condition don't react well with noise and touch. Most are either fidgety, don't have a sense of personal space, are clumsy, fears getting a touch, and are indifferent to pain or gets easily distracted with minimal noise.
Thanks to the feel and added weight of weighted blankets, this helps ease feelings of fear, thus calming its users with SID, thus making it into an excellent sensory-based intervention.
Individuals With Dyskinesia
Dyskinesia is a condition characterized by abnormal involuntary movements. It can be associated with other symptoms or as a stand-alone condition. Long term-use of Levodopa, a drug used for patients with Parkinson's Disease can also cause dyskinesia. Some people with dyskinesia undergo drug management to manage the symptoms while others go through surgery.
Dyskinesia can affect your daily lives. With such movements being involuntary and controlled, it can significantly impact activities of daily living. It can ruin your sleep cycle and alter your quality of sleep. By using a weighted blanket, the evenly distributed additional weight helps control tremors, ticks, or chorea. This, in turn, will relax your mind and body, helping you drift away to dreamland and sleep better at night.
Those With Insomnia
Have you ever had a hard time staying or falling asleep? Have you ever experienced waking up in the wee hours of the morning and failing to get back to dreamland? Or maybe you did get enough hours of sleep but still feels tired and restless the morning after? These are basic signs and symptoms of Insomnia.
Insomnia can either be acute or chronic. For people with severe Insomnia, they may experience difficulty falling asleep three nights per week for up to 2-3 consecutive months. If you experience at least three nights per week, but for more than three months, that is already a sign of Chronic Insomnia.
The thing is, Insomnia is relatively common - with 1 in every 4 Americans experiencing it every year. We may have different ways of managing Insomnia, and a weighted blanket proves to be one of the best ways to achieve better and longer sleep. A cooler environment helps stimulate sleep, making a cooling weighted blanket a must-have for light sleepers and people with Insomnia.
These specialty blankets cover you without feeling confined while giving that cooling and refreshing sensation, making it easier for your mind to stimulate sleep and your body to relax.
Individuals With Post-Traumatic Stress
If you're one of those who experienced or witnessed a terrifying event that caused trauma, it can trigger a mental condition called Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. People who have this may experience nightmares, anxiety, flashbacks, and depression, causing havoc to their life. While the symptoms can get better over time, it can be hard for some individuals with PTSD to cope, move on, and live a healthy life.
One of the things that can help manage PTSD symptoms are weighted blankets. Why? Sleeping with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder can be a big challenge. Since weighted blankets help promote sleep and relaxation, you can finally let your mind and body rest despite the having PTSD. When you get enough rest and sleep, you gain enough energy for the next day, feel and think better, thus improving your health and well-being.
Other Benefits According To Weighted Blanket Reviews
Many people crave the comfort that weighted blankets have to offer thanks to its many other benefits. For one, these are hypoallergenic, hygienic, eco-friendly, and easy to maintain. The fabrics are comfortable on sensitive skin, can easily be washed via machine wash or hand and are environment-friendly.
The beads used are non-toxic, have sand-like texture, and doesn't produce any noise even when you move or wiggle while using the blanket. There are also pressure and weight distribution, and you can choose a custom weight to fit your needs.
Beginner's Guide To Choosing The Best Weighted Blanket
If this is your first time buying a weighted blanket, then this guide is for you. Better take down some notes and keeps the following list in mind before purchasing a weighted blanket for you or your loved ones.
Weighted blankets will work best only if you choose one with the correct weight. These come in different weights - usually between 10-30 pounds. The rule of thumb is to choose a weighted blanket that is 10% your body weight. While the weight of the blanket will still depend on your preference, it would be best to start at 10% your ideal body weight to prevent feeling confined or restrained.
Some companies offer customized weighted blankets wherein they can create one for you depending on your preferred weight. However, refrain from giving this to tiny children child or someone weighing less than 50 lbs to avoid the risk of suffocation. For children, stick with the 10% body weight rule.
Consider Your Height When Choosing A Weighted Blanket
We all have different heights - some are taller than the others. Make sure to consider your height when choosing a weighted blanket. It needs to be slightly longer and larger than your frame to make sure it can cover you well-enough.
Brand Do Matters
There are lots of brands that offer weighted blankets, but we already know that not all companies are the same. This is why checking excellent weighted blanket reviews is essential. Some offer high-quality products. Others have ok-quality while others are just a rip-off with poor quality. If you want to make the most out of your purchase, go for trusted brands. But how do you find an excellent weighted blanket supplier?
The first step is to check weighted blanket reviews. Ask family and friends who already tried such specialty blankets and see which brands get the most thumbs up. Don't forget to check online reviews. See which ones have the best weighted blankets reviews, see which ones fit your budget and make the decision from there. Price may vary according to size, weight, and brand, but you can still find cheap ones with good reviews.
Choose A Brand That Has A Return Or Exchange Policy
Mistakes can happen, and you might choose the wrong weighted blanket. If you don't like the product or made a mistake by choosing the wrong weight, you'd want to have the option to return the product, have the supplier change or ask for a refund. Keep in mind to read the terms and conditions to make sure you can return or exchange the product, provided you meet their conditions when returning an item.
It is important to understand that weighted blankets are not for everyone. Experts discourage small children (3 years old and below) from using such blankets as they can cause suffocation when used inappropriately and without adult supervision. There are also people who dislike heavy blankets, while others can't sleep with even a light blanket. However, if you're among the individuals with any condition mentioned above and don't mind a heavier blanket than the usual ones, then it's worth exploring the benefits of weighted blankets.