6 Benefits Of Weighted Blankets (Anxiety & More!) (2023)

Weighted blankets, also called gravity blankets, are a type of blanket filled with weights, usually made from glass beads, pellets and several other materials popular today. Weighted blankets can benefit people who have trouble sleeping and suffer from anxiety, insomnia and other sleep disorders. In this blog post, we will discuss the benefits of using a weighted blanket and provide tips on choosing the right one for you!

How Do Weighted Blankets Work?

A weighted blanket works by applying deep pressure stimulation (DPS). This type of therapy uses firm pressure on the body to help relax the nervous system. It is similar to weighted vests, which apply deep pressure to the user's joints and muscles. It's also like receiving a hug known to bring a calming effect to people. The therapeutic benefits of weighted blankets have been experienced over time by thousands of users, growing their popularity and giving people more confidence to buy them. If there's a simpler way to promote sleep and relaxation other than using sleep medicine, why not try it right?

Related Content:How to care for a weighted blanket

Benefits Of Weighted Blankets

There are many benefits of using a weighted blanket, including the following.

Reduce anxiety symptoms and stress

Weighted blankets can help to reduce anxiety and stress by providing a sense of security and comfort. They can also help increase serotonin levels, a chemical that plays a role in mood regulation.

Improving sleep quality

If you have insomnia or other sleep disorders, a weighted blanket may help you to get a better night's sleep. A weighted blanket's deep pressure touch stimulation can help relax the body and mind, making it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep.

Relieving restless leg syndrome

Restless leg syndrome is a condition that causes an irresistible urge to move your legs. This can often be accompanied by uncomfortable sensations, such as tingling, burning, or itching. Weighted blankets have been shown to provide relief from these symptoms and help people with restless leg syndrome get a better night's sleep.

Relieving pain

You can also use weighted blankets to relieve pain. The deep pressure touch stimulation can help to reduce inflammation and provide relief from conditions like fibromyalgia, arthritis, and migraines.

(Video) Mayo Clinic Minute: How weighted blankets may lift anxiety

Stimulating the release of serotonin (the happy hormone)

A weighted blanket can also help to stimulate the release of serotonin, which is often referred to as the "happy hormone." Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that plays a role in mood regulation. When levels are low, it can lead to feelings of depression and anxiety. By increasing serotonin levels, weighted blankets can help improve your mood and overall sense of well-being.

Calming the nervous system

The deep pressure stimulation of a weighted blanket can help to calm the nervous system. This can be beneficial for people who suffer from conditions like anxiety. The calming effect of a weighted blanket can also help to improve focus, concentration and improve sleep too.

Possible Cons of a Weighted Blanket

While there are many benefits to using a weighted blanket, there are also some potential drawbacks to consider. These include:

  1. The weight of the blanket can make it difficult to move around in the bed
  2. If the blanket is too heavy, it can cause major discomfort
  3. The cost of a weighted blanket can be higher than that of a regular blanket

Luckily, the above cons have solutions to them, as you'll see later in this post.

Who Can Benefit From Using Weighted Blankets?

Anyone can benefit from using a weighted blanket, but mostly, those who require some assistance to sleep such as people in need of pain reduction among others discussed below.

Insomniacs

If for whatever reason you can't sleep, for example, due to anxiety or stress, instead of taking sleeping pills, try out a weighted blanket. The deep pressure therapy will help you fall asleep faster and sleep longer.

ADHD patients

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is one of the mental health disorders that affect very young children and also adults. The patient gets into a state of restlessness and lack of concentration, among other things. Weighted blankets help their nerves and minds to relax. If they can have restful sleep, then they won't worry about restlessness. ADHD patients can also use weighted blankets when trying to read a book, watch tv and when resting.

Autism sufferers

Autism spectrum disorder is a mental health disorder that is marked by repetitive behaviors, problems with social skills, and communication difficulties. The main aim of people with autism is to try and reduce their anxiety levels. Research has shown that weighted blankets help in reducing the symptoms of autism spectrum disorder and also help improve sleep quality for these patients. Click here for a review on best weighted blankets for autism.

(Video) Do weighted blankets really reduce stress, help sleep?

PTSD patients

Weighted blankets help people with post-traumatic stress disorder to feel more secure and relaxed. PTSD is a mental health disorder that is caused by a traumatic event. The event could be something like rape, natural disasters, car accidents, or military combat. People who suffer from PTSD often have nightmares, and flashbacks, and feel very anxious. Weighted blankets help to reduce these symptoms by giving them that warm cuddly feeling.

Anxiety patients

Anxiety is characterized by feelings of worry, anxiousness, and fear. These feelings can be so severe that they interfere with your daily life and sleep cycle. Many people who suffer from anxiety use weighted blankets to help them feel more secure and relaxed.

Related Content:Best weighted blanket for couples

Who Shouldn't Use a Weighted Blanket

While a weighted blanket is a therapeutic blanket, it is not safe for everyone to use. Very young children shouldn't be allowed to use gravity blankets. This is because they may not know how to use it properly and because they're usually big and heavy, a kid might accidentally strangle or suffocate themselves in the process of tossing in their sleep.

Additionally, very old people (seniors) should not be allowed to use weighted blankets. While they can safely use them, some may cover their heads too much, blocking any air space. If a senior must use a weighted blanket then it should be a very light one.

Finally, people with respiratory issues should avoid using weighted blankets. One of those conditions is obstructive sleep apnea. Patients will find themselves losing breath during their sleep and the weight of a gravity blanket may worsen the situation.

How to Choose the Right Weighted Blanket

When choosing a weighted blanket, it is important to consider the following factors:

Your body type and size

The weight of the blanket should be around 10% of your body weight. Going above this can potentially cause discomfort or worse, suffocation if you cover yourself to the head.

The size of your weighted blanket should be big enough to cover your entire body. If you are taller or have a larger frame, you may need to purchase a bigger size like a queen or king size. This also applies if you're purchasing for yourself and your partner.

Related Content:Weighted blanket for kids

Your sleep habits

If you tend to move around a lot in your sleep, you will want to choose a lighter weighted blanket. If you are a light sleeper, you may want to choose a heavier weighted blanket to also keep you warm through the night.

Personal preference

Some people prefer a softer and more plush weighted blanket while others prefer a thinner and more breathable one. Consider what will work best for you and your needs.

Your budget

Weighted blankets can range in price from $50 and above depending on the size, weight, and material. If you are on a budget, you may want to consider a cheaper option like cotton weighted blankets. If you have a higher budget, you may want to consider a more expensive option like bamboo weighted blankets. You can also opt for a DIY weighted blanket which are fun to make.

(Video) Benefits of a Weighted Blanket (Backed by Studies): Anxiety, ADHD, Insomnia, Stress, OCD & More

Sleep temperature

If you live in a hot climate or if you're a hot sleeper, you will want to choose a lighter weighted blanket and more breathable material like cotton or linen. If you live in a cold area, choose a thicker and heavier weighted blanket made of wool or cashmere.

Your medical condition

If you suffer from any medical conditions that could be aggravated by using a weighted blanket, please consult your doctor before purchasing one. Conditions like claustrophobia, asthma, and heart conditions could potentially be made worse by the use of a weighted blanket.

The material of the weighted blanket

The material of the weighted blanket is also important to consider. Some materials like linen are more breathable and therefore cooler, while others like wool are thicker and warmer.

On the same note, try and get a weighted blanket that's hypoallergenic if you're an allergy sufferer or if you have asthma. Hypoallergenic weighted blankets will keep dust off their surface and allergens too. If you're pro-green, there are several organic options to choose from as well.

Related Content:Aricove weighted blanket review

Conclusion

If you are considering purchasing a weighted blanket, be sure to consult with your doctor or healthcare provider first. They can help you determine if a weighted blanket is right for you and give you guidance on how to choose the right for your condition.

(Video) The Benefits Of Weighted Blankets

FAQs

Why weighted blankets are good for anxiety? ›

The pressure of weighted blankets puts your autonomic nervous system into “rest” mode, reducing some of the symptoms of anxiety, such as a quickened heart rate or breathing. This can provide an overall sense of calm.

How much do weighted blankets help with anxiety? ›

The calming benefits of weighted blankets are supported by some research, too. One small study tested the effectiveness of weighted blankets in adults in 2006. The results were staggering: 63 percent reported lower anxiety after use, and 78 percent found the weighted blanket an effective calming mechanism.

What are the pros and cons of a weighted blanket? ›

What are the pros and cons of this trend? Pros: using a weighted blanket offers a drug-free way to help you cope with anxiety, fall asleep easier, sleep deeper, and wake up feeling restored. Cons: conventional weighted blankets can be too hot to sleep under and aren't eco-friendly.

Is it OK to sleep with a weighted blanket every night? ›

Should Everyone Use a Weighted Blanket? Adults and older children can use weighted blankets as bed covers or for relaxing during the day. They are safe to use for sleeping throughout the night.

Do weighted blankets help with anger? ›

It can help with anxiety, increased emotions such as excitement, anger, etc., improve sleep, and lowering stress such as blood pressure and pulse for all ages. Most common diagnoses that utilize a weighted blanket include Autism, ADHD, cerebral palsy, Down Syndrome, and developmental delay (V, 2020).

What disorders do weighted blankets help with? ›

Anxiety and Depression

The soothing effects of a weighted blanket may help improve sleep for people with these mental health conditions. One study found that weighted blankets helped reduce insomnia symptoms for people with anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and ADHD.

How long does it take to feel the effects of a weighted blanket? ›

Usually, it may take around a week to get adjusted to a weighted blanket although; to start experiencing the benefits of a weighted blanket one must wait around three weeks. It might take anywhere from three weeks to four weeks (21 days to 28 days) to develop an activity into a habit.

Do weighted blankets help with restless legs? ›

People with restless leg syndrome (RLS) may benefit from using a weighted blanket. This is because the sensation of the blanket on your legs may override that restless leg feeling. Bear in mind that there are certain people who should avoid weighted blankets.

Can you wash a weighted blanket? ›

Weighted Blanket Care Guidelines

Machine Wash and Dry: When machine washing, choose a bleach-free, gentle detergent, and wash your blanket in cold or warm water on a gentle cycle. Avoid fabric softeners. Choose a light or medium dryer setting and periodically fluff the blanket while it's drying.

Do weighted blankets lower blood pressure? ›

Since they mimic the sensation of being held, weighted blankets also have the same health-promoting benefits of hugging, such as decreased stress, lower blood pressure, and improved mood. Weighted blankets are also considered a form of deep pressure therapy (DPT).

Are weighted blankets good for arthritis? ›

If you're looking for a complementary approach to managing your arthritis pain, a weighted blanket could be a great option. Weighted blankets can potentially reduce your pain and stress, all while giving you the best sleep of your life.

Can you sleep on your side under a weighted blanket? ›

For best results, we recommend sleeping on your back. This way, it covers your entire body with an even pressure. You can sleep on your side, but this means less area covered by the blanket.

Should weighted blanket cover feet? ›

Cover your entire body: For full relaxation, cover your entire body from your shoulders down to your feet. If needed, you can use just half of the blanket (over your legs) for the first few days to let your body adjust.

Are weighted blankets good for your back? ›

A Weighted Blanket Could Be A Game-Changer. To fight back pain, many people are turning to a natural solution to eliminate their pain: weighted blankets. Weighted blankets have a unique ability to use therapeutic pressure to reduce pain while improving our overall health.

Do weighted blankets help PTSD? ›

Through deep-touch pressure stimulation, a weighted blanket PTSD can stimulate your body, producing more serotonin, which is known as the “happiness hormone.” This blanket not only helps regulate your body's sleep cycle, but it can also alleviate PTSD symptoms.

Do weighted blankets help ADHD? ›

Weighted blankets are a tool occupational therapists (OTs) often recommend for kids with ADHD, SPD, and autism spectrum disorders to help with calming. The weight is intended to provide proprioceptive input to the brain, which has a calming and organizing effect on the central nervous system.

Do weighted blankets release dopamine? ›

Weighted blankets may cause the same responses in your body that happen when you get a hug. You get a surge of feel-good hormones, such as oxytocin. "A decrease of cortisol, which is sort of our stress hormone, and an increase of serotonin and dopamine — two neurotransmitters that really affect our mood," Dr.

What do doctors say about weighted blankets? ›

Weighted blankets are a type of at-home measure that can provide similar benefits to deep pressure therapy. These blankets have shown positive results for several conditions, including autism, ADHD, and anxiety. They can help calm a restless body, reduce feelings of anxiety, and improve sleep troubles.

Is there any science behind weighted blankets? ›

Generally, studies have shown that weighted blankets might be effective in some situations for reducing anxiety. In one study of 32 adult volunteers, 63% reported lower anxiety after lying under a 30-pound blanket for 5 minutes.

What the science actually says about weighted blankets? ›

Becklund and two researchers from Saint Leo University in Florida investigated if weighted blankets helped with anxiety in psychiatric patients. Measuring how their patients responded to questions about their emotional state, the researchers found evidence that weighted blankets had a marked calming effect.

Do you use a sheet under a weighted blanket? ›

We recommend laying your Baloo on top of the sheets, but under your comforter or other blankets. This keeps your weighted blanket close to your body and also allows you to easily add or remove layers as needed for warmth. But it's really a matter of personal preference and what feels the most comfortable to you!

What to Know Before Getting a weighted blanket? ›

The most important thing to keep in mind when shopping for a weighted blanket is weight. If you're an adult, make sure you choose a blanket that is 10 percent of your body weight. If you're shopping for a child, it's recommended to find a weighted blanket that is 10 percent of their body weight, plus one to two pounds.

Can a weighted blanket help with snoring? ›

The weighted blanket is being touted as the cure-all for everything sleep-related, including stopping mild snoring, perhaps by relaxing the respiratory muscles. Though it should not be used by heavy snorers and those with sleep apnea or asthma.

Does a weighted blanket help with moving around when you sleep? ›

Calm your nerves.

Pressure from the blanket may trigger nervous system responses that lower your heart rate and breathing when you're anxious. This can help you calm down and sleep. Weighted blankets could also help you stop tossing and turning in bed, so you lie still and go to sleep.

Can two people use a weighted blanket? ›

Technically, yes, you can share a weighted blanket. But that doesn't necessarily mean you should. Unlike standard blankets, weighted blankets are based on an individual's body weight. While preferences vary, most people prefer to use a weighted blanket that weighs approximately 10 percent of their body weight.

How do you sanitize a weighted blanket? ›

For blankets under 15 pounds, machine-wash it at home on the gentle cycle, using cool water and mild detergent. For blankets over 15 pounds, bring it to a laundromat to wash it in an industrial machine. Skip the fabric softener and bleach.

What happens if you put a weighted blanket in the dryer? ›

Air Drying: The Best Way to Dry a Weighted Blanket

Dryers can shrink or ruin certain fabrics, and hot tumble-drying can take a heavy toll on your beloved blanket.

Will weighted blanket ruin dryer? ›

If the blanket is too heavy, it could damage your appliances. “Make sure you check your washing machine/dryer load capacity to avoid any damage to them,” Mehrotra advises. Regarding materials, if it contains glass, plastic, or steel beads—or is a chunky knit weighted blanket—it is machine washable.

Is a weighted blanket good for seniors? ›

Weighted blankets are safe for seniors to use no matter their age or weight. They actually provide a host of benefits for the elderly, which include helping with insomnia, stress, depression, Alzheimer's symptoms, anxiety, combat RLS (Restless Leg Syndrome) and provide better overall quality of sleep.

Do weighted blankets affect circulation? ›

People with certain conditions, such as asthma or diabetes, should talk to their healthcare provider before using weighted blankets, since they might affect breathing or circulation.

Do weighted blankets help dementia? ›

Weighted blankets for dementia promote calm

Alzheimer's and dementia often cause older adults to feel agitated, anxious, or have disturbed sleep. A weighted blanket or lap pad is a simple, non-drug option that can be used day or night. They promote deep sleep, reduce anxiety, calm nerves, and provide comfort.

Why do weighted blankets help with pain? ›

Pain reductions were not mediated by anxiety or sleep. Given that the heavy weighted blanket was associated with greater modulation of affective versus sensory aspects of chronic pain, we propose that the observed reductions are due to interoceptive and social/affective effects of deeper pressure.

Why does a weighted blanket feel so good? ›

The theory behind the added weight is that it helps to reduce anxiety and encourage sleep by promoting melatonin (a sleep hormone). Some experts also claim that weighted blankets may stimulate other natural hormones, such as dopamine and serotonin, which are directly related to happiness.

Do weighted blankets help with nerve pain? ›

Yes, weighted blankets may help with both acute and chronic pain. In a recent double-blind study, 94 participants with chronic pain wore a 15-lb.

Do weighted blankets cause joint pain? ›

This faulty formula can actually result in aches, pains, and joint compression. A weighted blanket does not need to be crazy heavy as a whole. It simply needs to give that "just right" little bit of pressure on as many nerves as possible.

Why you shouldn't keep one leg outside the blanket? ›

If you stick out your feet out of your blanket in the winter season then it might make you feel cold and you might have to get the feet back inside your blankets, this can eventually lead to disturbance in sleep.

Do you sweat under a weighted blanket? ›

Weighted Blanket Materials to Avoid

Unlike fabrics like mink, they aren't breathable. Polyester fabrics will retain your heat and will keep the moisture from your body close to you. It will lead to overheating, and you'll feel sticky and uncomfortable with your damp, sweaty skin.

What happens if a weighted blanket is too heavy? ›

A blanket heavier than 35 pounds is more likely to cause discomfort because: The blanket begins to cause your body temperature to rise. It will place too much pressure on your joints throughout the night. It will make you feel restricted.

What pound weighted blanket is best for anxiety? ›

What weight of weighted blankets is best for anxiety? Most brands recommend choosing a weighted blanket that's 5 to 10 percent of your body weight. If you weigh 150 pounds, for instance, choose a blanket that weighs between 7.5 and 15 pounds.

Do weighted blankets increase serotonin? ›

The pressure of the weighted blanket promotes the production of serotonin, which stimulates the body to relax and induces sleep,” Emmanuelli says. “And it may also encourage your body to release oxytocin, which can relieve pain and stress.

Who should not use a weighted blanket? ›

Weighted blankets may be unsuitable for people with certain medical conditions, including chronic respiratory or circulatory issues, sleep apnea, asthma, low blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, epilepsy, and claustrophobia.

Should a weighted blanket be directly on you? ›

Cover your entire body: For full relaxation, cover your entire body from your shoulders down to your feet. If needed, you can use just half of the blanket (over your legs) for the first few days to let your body adjust. Lying on your back can help evenly distribute the weight, but by no means is it required.

Do weighted blankets help with loneliness? ›

Weighted blankets can improve your overall sleep quality, which can help increase your energy levels and decrease mood swings. Provides Comfort – When we're feeling sad or lonely, we have a natural tendency to seek out cozy and comforting things.

Do weighted blankets help with inflammation? ›

To minimize arthritis flare-ups, try wrapping yourself in a cozy weighted throw blanket. The pressure from the blanket will decrease the stress hormone cortisol and slowly melt away your stress, making your pain seem more manageable.

Are weighted blankets good for blood circulation? ›

It strengthens our immune system, boosts blood circulation, increases the feel-good hormone, oxytocin, and, serotonin, the body's pain-reducing hormone. All of these benefits make touch a meaningful way to find relief and comfort.

Can weighted blankets lower blood pressure? ›

Since they mimic the sensation of being held, weighted blankets also have the same health-promoting benefits of hugging, such as decreased stress, lower blood pressure, and improved mood. Weighted blankets are also considered a form of deep pressure therapy (DPT).

Videos

1. Weighted Blanket Benefits (Pros & Cons)
(JMG ENTERPRISES )
2. Will a Weighted Blanket Help You Sleep Better?
(The Doctors)
3. Jaymag Weighted Blanket Review - We tested this anti-anxiety sensory weighted blanket
(The Sleep Advisors)
4. I TRY A WEIGHTED BLANKET FOR 6 NIGHTS TO IMPROVE MY SLEEP
(Kristine Fernandez)
5. Do Weighted Blankets Really Do Anything?
(SciShow Psych)
6. Best Weighted Blanket Review of 2018 (Reduce Symptoms Of Anxiety, Insomnia & more!)
(The Deal Guy)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Foster Heidenreich CPA

Last Updated: 02/21/2023

Views: 6797

Rating: 4.6 / 5 (76 voted)

Reviews: 91% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Foster Heidenreich CPA

Birthday: 1995-01-14

Address: 55021 Usha Garden, North Larisa, DE 19209

Phone: +6812240846623

Job: Corporate Healthcare Strategist

Hobby: Singing, Listening to music, Rafting, LARPing, Gardening, Quilting, Rappelling

Introduction: My name is Foster Heidenreich CPA, I am a delightful, quaint, glorious, quaint, faithful, enchanting, fine person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.