Do Weighted Blankets Help You Sleep? Yes, Research Shows Why

What’s causing you to lose sleep? Perhaps we’ve got a new kiddo or puppy in the house. Maybe you’re adjusting to a new environment. Potentially you’ve had some rough family or work events occur. Or it just so happens that some of us have always found ourselves staring at the ceiling or endlessly counting sheep regularly.

Regardless of the circumstances, weighted blankets are here to help ease the mind and lull you to sleep. The added weight to a somewhat standard blanket offers pressures that align with deep touch therapy (DTP). Let’s dive into how this works.

Does a weighted blanket help you sleep?

Weighted blankets help relax the body by offering a blanket’s version of a hug. When humans feel the comforting sensation of a hug, our nervous system feels safe and relaxed.

highlight Easing the mind is the first step in getting a good night’s sleep. Weighted blankets have been found to:

  1. Help users fall asleep faster
  2. Receive higher quality sleep
  3. Feel more rested upon waking up
  4. Wake less in the night
  5. Feel less stressed when hitting the sheets
  6. Need less aid in winding down before bed

Any of these benefits sound appealing to you? We hope so.

Deep touch therapy triggers the happy hormones and regulates stress hormones to create balance, helping the body decompress. So yes, weighted blankets can help you sleep.

Just make sure you’re choosing the right weight and filling for you and any sensitivities you may have for optimal rest.

Why do weighted blankets help you sleep?

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If you’re looking for a natural sleep aid, you may have met your new soulmate.

Occupational therapists have used weighted blankets for ages to reduce the more disruptive side effects of ADHD and Autism. The goal – reduce stress and anxiety to calm the nervous system and increase productivity with a clear mind.

Luckily, these have transcended their clinical origins to help the greater public in our sleep efforts. Similar to how weighted blankets positively shift the mental state of ADHD and Autism patients, they calm the nervous system for everyone, which is vital in falling asleep.

The science of the hug has a few beautiful applications, and luckily sleep is one of them.

How does a weighted blanket help you sleep?

So we’ve answered the yes or no aspect of the question, but how do weighted blankets help you sleep?

Let’s delve more into the scientific and therapeutic side of it.

Are you familiar with the hormones that help determine your overall health and wellbeing? These include oxytocin, serotonin, dopamine, cortisol, and the famous melatonin.

We see melatonin pop up a lot in sleep blogs or in the supplements aisle to aid in improved rest, but why not work with what we’ve got?

The beauty of touch is that the onset of light pressure physically catalyzes a lowered heart rate, blood pressure and reduces pain. Emotionally, DTP relaxes the mind by reducing depression and anxiety.

When the hormones listed are properly dispersed and functioning, the benefits from a happy and healthy mind and body serve us well beyond the bedroom. Investing in self-care and nurturing this mind-body connection will be well worth the small investment.

Do weighted blankets help with insomnia?

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Insomnia is the dilemma of struggling to fall and remain asleep. Many people turn to medication or behavioral therapy to lessen symptoms. Weighted blankets offer a natural and pretty cost-effective solution.

If a blanket seems too simple an answer, studies have also backed up this claim.

A group of Swedish researchers found that the introduction of weighted blankets to patients with insomnia resulted in reduced symptoms, less interrupted sleep, and feeling more rested during the day.

This group was 26 times more likely to cut their insomnia symptoms in half and were 20 times more likely to enter remission of insomnia altogether.

Pretty compelling results. Give one a go; what’s there to lose besides sleep in the meantime?

Are weighted blankets beneficial for more than just sleep?

highlight Weighted blankets are for more than just sleep. Think of them as your new on-demand hug therapist. If you are interested in learning more, here is a full post on the benefits of a weighted blanket.

Weighted blankets vary in size and weight, allowing you to take them wherever you find appropriate. You may not want to bring them to places like restaurants or the beach, but who am I to tell you how to live your life?

There are now small weighted lap pads (blankets) and pieces that drape over your shoulders or across the top of your legs. The goal is to feel grounded, and some of us need this in many facets of our lives.

Weighted blankets are often used in relieving chronic pain, restless leg syndrome, and other traits relating to physical pain. Also, stress-inducing conditions like PTSD and OCD have a place for these blankets in alleviating symptoms.

These examples are just to name a few of the many facets. We’ve already discussed the benefits of DTP how these benefits translate beyond the mattress. If you would find this helpful in your workplace or on the go, the possibilities are endless.

Can you sleep with a weighted blanket all night?

Why yes, yes you can. Weighted blankets are here for you all night, every night. There are a few general rules of thumb to follow when choosing a weighted blanket that’s right for you and will allow you to sleep comfortably throughout the night:

  1. Choose a weight that is 10% of your body weight.
  2. Pick a filling that does not trigger any personal allergies or sensory irritations.
  3. The size of your blanket should completely cover your body and be proportionate to the size of your mattress.
  4. Materials vary by warmth and feel – choose one that fits your climate and preferred sleeping temperature.

Those are basic and easy tips to ensure your best night’s of sleep to come. There are a few things to consider as well for your health and safety. Please make sure not to cover your face or head with the blanket.

You won’t enjoy the benefits if you’re smothering yourself. Also, ensure that you can independently put on and take off your weighted blanket. These blankets are sleep assistants and should be enjoyed; let them snuggle rather than suffocate you.

Please read a little more about weighted blankets for kids if that is who you’re shopping for, as they have some special requirements due to being slightly more vulnerable than us older folk.

These heads-ups are not to scare you but to make sure you can take advantage of the DTP weighted blankets have to offer throughout the night.

We hope you feel excited to try out your new hug therapist. Weighted blankets have the ability to truly change the way you sleep for the better. Good luck with your shopping experience, and we hope you’ll love weighted blankets as much as we do.

Source:

American Academy of Sleep Medicine. “Weighted blankets can decrease insomnia severity: Randomized, controlled trial finds that weighted blankets are safe and effective.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 September 2020. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/09/200923124740.htm>