Weighted blankets have recently become a popular item over the past several years due to the attention they’ve been getting in their use with children who have autism and anxiety disorders. As it turns out, adults can benefit from them, as well; in this article, we’ll cover what exactly a weighted blanket is and how it could possibly help you.
What Is A Weighted Blanket?
A weighted blanket is a blanket that has had weighted material sewn into it such as beads. These can weigh anywhere from 4lbs to 25lbs and are often recommended for use by those who have anxiety disorders such as ADHD, generalized anxiety, or a developmental disorder such as autism.
How Does A Weighted Blanket Work?
In theory, the pressure of the blanket causes the body to release serotonin, which assists in calming and relaxing the body. It creates a pressure and a sensation that is similar to the hugs that we give each other; they’re naturally comforting and just helps us feel snug.
As for what’s in them, the material used to weigh down the blanket varies by who’s making the product. It can be anything from plastic pellets to glass beads. Even lead has been found to be in some weighted blankets, but you should definitely avoid any blanket that advertises it’s weighed down with that!
Should I Get A One Piece Weighted Blanket Or One With A Duvet?
When you’re shopping for a weighted blanket, you want to definitely get a duvet style instead of a one piece. You want something that’s going to last and while taking the duvet off of the weighted part of the blanket may be a hassle, your blanket will last longer than a one piece this way because you can wash the cover only if needed.
How Heavy Should My Weighted Blanket Be?
Weighted blankets can weigh as little as 3lbs or so, but it’ll be difficult to find a blanket that weighs more than 25lbs. What your blanket needs to weigh will depend fully on how much you weigh; a good rule of thumb is that your blanket should weigh somewhere around 10% of your own body weight. It’s okay to add a pound or two more than that if it makes you feel more comfortable.
You don’t want to go over the 10% rule when dealing with small children, however. Children shouldn’t be using weighted blankets before they’re over 2 years old, well past the majority of the risk for SIDS.