Assessing the Effectiveness of Weighted Blankets

Assessing the Effectiveness of Weighted Blankets

At first glance, a weighted blanket appears to just be a blanket that is heavier than a regular one. This seems to be a simple change, yet it has been credited with lowering stress and anxiety levels in people, and helping them in getting a good night’s sleep. It seems a bit far-fetched to think that a weighted blanket could possibly hold its own against all those powerful drugs that claim to provide the same effects, but believe me, it does.

Let’s start with how it works, namely Deep Touch Pressure Stimulation. Deep touch pressure is a type of touch sensation that is often provided by squeezing, hugging, cuddling and the like. When your body thinks it’s being held, it releases Serotonin, a chemical that boosts happiness and relaxation. This is the why you get that wave of euphoria whenever you get a hug.

Now this simple feeling of being held works miracles when you want to relax at the end of a long, stressful day. Studies have shown that children prefer the use of weighted blankets over regular ones and even the parents have shown a preference for weighted blankets for their children. They have been known to provide people with “a more comfortable, better quality, and more secure sleep”.

These blankets don’t just stop at giving you a better sleeping experience; they assist with all sorts of stress-related conditions like depression, anxiety, OCD, PTSD and bi-polar disorder. They’ve been observed to provide the patients with a calming sensation that makes them feel safe, secure and grounded to reality.

There’s no argument that the feeling of being held when you’re drifting off to sleep would help relieve you of your tensions. This is exactly why doctors and occupational therapists recommend using weighted blankets as an alternative to drugs, when treating stress and anxiety.