Monday, November 21, 2022

How Do Weighted Blankets Help With Anxiety

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Weighted Blankets For Sensory Processing Disorder

Do weighted blankets really reduce stress, help sleep?

Sensory processing disorder can take one of two forms. Some children and adults with sensory processing disorder are hypersensitive to stimuli and may become overwhelmed by noise, crowds or touching. In other people, sensory processing disorder takes the form of hyposensitivity . This group may have difficulty sensing noises, touch and other stimuli. Whereas someone who is oversensitive might avoid hugs or touching, an undersensitive person may actually seek it out. In some cases, people with undersensitivity also have a very high pain tolerance.

Therapists and medical professionals offer a variety of tools and therapies to help treat the symptoms of sensory processing disorder. For example, your therapist may have suggested a weighted blanket as a way to help you or your child handle the issues associated with the disorder. Because a weighted blanket is an object and not a person, children who are hypersensitive may respond better to it because they get to control the blanket. In other words, they decide how much or how little touch they would like to experience and can adjust the blanket to cover the areas where they feel they can tolerate pressure. And for adults and children who are hyposensitive, the blanket provides the firm, gentle pressure they crave.

What Weighted Blankets Are

Weighted blankets tend to look a lot like other cozy throws. The difference is that theyre typically filled with tiny glass sand or plastic pellets that help distribute approximately 10 to 30 pounds of weight evenly over the wearers body while they relax or sleep.

It varies how much weight people prefer in a blanket and there is no standardized recommendation, although many experts advise using one that is about 10 percent of your body weight, Lynelle Schneeberg, Psy.D., a behavioral sleep psychologist and a fellow of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, tells SELF.

In the past, weighted blankets have most often been utilized as a therapeutic tool for people with autism. Some occupational therapists and parents have used weighted blankets in an effort to lower stress and agitation in people with autism.

The recent explosion in mainstream weighted blanket popularity, however, appears tied to a constellation of factors. Some think increasing awareness of mental health conditions like anxiety and the importance of sleep coincided withand probably helped to promoteimmense interest in a 2017 crowdfunding campaign for the Gravity Blanket, a mass-market weighted prototype that raised $4.7 million in pledge money. Gravity Blankets campaign also garnered criticism for language that reportedly suggested weighted blankets could treat anxiety and other mental health conditions, though that language was later removed.

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What About Restless Legs Syndrome

What else do weighted blankets do? Well, there are anecdotal claims that tout the use of weighted blankets for restless legs syndrome because of the deep pressure.

That said, there isn’t enough scientific evidence to suggest that it’s beneficial for people with the condition.

Our Weighted Blanket Picks

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How A Kocoono Weighted Blanket Can Help You With Anxiety

Although putting 5kg to 9kg over you can sound quite anxiety provoking, the truth is that it causes the opposite effect for many of us. It can feel like a strange phenomenon when using it initially, as the body is not used to it, but the relaxing effect comes after some minutes.

Why throwing weight over yourself can help alleviate your Anxiety?

There is a connection between the sense of touch and the state of excitement or calm in our brain. A massage with moderate pressure helps treat Anxiety and stress by stimulating the vagus nerve, the parasympathetic system’s main nerve, and the one in charge of relaxing. We could say that the effect is similar to the little gem that gives you a hug to make you feel better or calm you down.

Here we summarise the 5 different ways Kocoono can help you relax and calm your anxiety!

1. Release your happy Hormones reducing cortisol

2. Mimics the feeling of a hug

Many studies show that cuddles are effective to reduce cortisol levels and increase oxytocin levels. The feeling of a hug with the Luxe version of Kocoono Blanket is even greater thanks to its shoulder embrace that applies pressure over your shoulder area and fits smoothly over you thanks to the neck cut out that surrounds you! Literally, like someone hugging you the whole night! This exclusive feature makes you feel cocooned!

3. Kocoono Weighted Blankets are a great grounding technique

4. Improve your quality sleep thus your anxiousness levels decrease!

Are Weighted Blankets Safe

How Do Weighted Blankets Help with Anxiety

Weighted blankets are safe for most adults. However, those with underlying medical conditions, such as respiratory or circulatory issues, should consult with their doctor before use. The pressure of a weighted blanket might be problematic for those with asthma, low blood pressure, or type 2 diabetes, for example. Additionally, adults with claustrophobia may find weighted blankets too confining, and those with mobility issues may struggle to move under the added weight.

While you should consult your childs pediatrician, weighted blankets are generally considered safe for most children over the age of 3 who weigh at least 50 pounds. As with adults, experts suggest that a childs weighted blanket should be about 10% of their body weight. Many manufacturers sell weighted blankets specifically designed for children or label a model as being safe for children. Regardless of the manufacturers claims, its still best to check with your family doctor about whats appropriate for your child.

Finally, a weighted blanket should never be so heavy that the sleeper cannot remove it themselves, since this presents significant safety issues.

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What To Do If Your Mind Is Racing Before Sleep

For many people switching off before bed is a challenge! We tend to think about all the things that are not going well when we are in bed. You run the risk of entering a circle in which, despite being sleepy, your mind cannot disconnect: worry and rumination can seriously interfere with our ability to fall asleep.

We are susceptible to stress in our daily lives: economic problems, work deadlines, family concerns, and others.

The NHS in the UK states that one in 3 of us suffers from poor sleep, with stress, computers and taking work home often blamed. If you are in this group, check our 5 tips to reduce anxiety while working from home

We can’t change reality but we can choose our attitude and how to deal with our stressors. You can do many actions to ease your mind and deal with stress, from meditating, exercise, and setting time aside to do enjoyable activities that help you switch off. Here you can find 6 strategies to deal with stress and anxiety that might helps you!

If you can’t stop your mind in bed, we highly recommend you check these 6 relaxing techniques before going to sleep. They are ideally selected to allow your brain to enter in peace.

Allow yourself at least 2 hours of switch-off time before the desired hour to fall asleep to put the techniques into practice. Leave your body time enough to understand that bedtime is coming. No WhatsApp, no emails. Let yourself do relaxing things such as reading a book, meditating, writing a journal, or taking a hot bath.

How Do They Work

The theory behind these blankets is that the pressure of the weight provides some therapeutic value. Itâs almost like a babyâs swaddling blanket that soothes it as it sleeps. Weighted blankets can:

Calm your nerves. Pressure from the blanket may trigger nervous system responses that lower your heart rate and breathing when youâre 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.

Trigger natural chemicals. The pressure could trigger your brain to release a chemical called serotonin, which helps your mind and body calm down. Serotonin can keep your mood steady and help with sleep.

Pressure may help your body release oxytocin, which may improve your immune system response, ease pain and stress, and help you sleep.

Sensory therapy. Weighted blankets may help some people with autism spectrum disorder or ADHD who are overstimulated by noise around them. At bedtime, the blanketâs pressure may help them feel safe and protected. They calm down and get some rest.

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Weighted Blankets For Adhd

Researchers at Temple University found that 95 percent of participants with ADHD in a study improved when they received sensory intervention. The interventions offered included deep pressure touch therapy and a variety of strenuous exercise. As one researcher stated, We found significant improvement in sensory avoiding behaviors, tactile sensitivity, and visual auditory sensitivity in the group that received treatment.

If your therapist uses deep pressure touch therapy, he or she may suggest using a weighted blanket so you can continue to receive the benefits at home.

How To Use A Weighted Blanket For Anxiety

DO WEIGHTED BLANKETS HELP KIDS WITH SLEEP & ANXIETY? We Tried For A Month | SJ STRUM

If you have an anxiety disorder or know someone who does, then you probably know how difficult it can be to deal with on a regular basis. Sometimes, anxiety is triggered by a phobia or a traumatic event, while other times it seems to come out of nowhere. Anxiety can take on many different forms, and all of them can make your life miserable in some way or another.

Fortunately, thats where weighted throw blankets come in. Designed to mimic the feeling of a gentle hug, these soothing blankets use a technique called deep pressure touch stimulation to promote a sense of calm and relaxation.

If youre looking for a natural way to ease anxiety symptoms, a weighted throw blanket could be the therapy tool you need to get things under control. Below, learn more about weighted blankets and how to use one for anxiety.

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Can Weighted Blankets Reduce Anxiety And Panic Attacks

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America , about 2.7 million adults in the U.S. suffer from panic disorder. Panic attacks can come out of nowhere and can be a major disruption for people who experience them. Additionally, many people who have panic disorder also suffer from a co-occurring disorder, such as anxiety and depression.

If you suffer from panic disorder, weighted blankets for adults with anxiety might seem like yet another silly solution offered up by well-meaning but mildly annoying relatives yet, there is evidence that a weighted blanket can help you feel less anxious.

How To Choose Weighted Blanket

When choosing weighted blankets for the anxiety, consider the following factors:

1. Weight

Your weight plays an important role when it comes to choosing a weighted blanket. Your therapist can also help you to choose the right blanket for your needs. You need to buy a weighted blanket that is up to 10 percent of your total body weight. The same is recommended for children, although with an allowance of one to two pounds.

2. The Cover Material

Pick a blanket that is made from 100 percent cotton since it is a natural fiber. Synthetic fibers usually get too hot and may make you uncomfortable.

3. The Filling

Most companies that make weighted blankets use rice or barley which is good unless you have food allergies, in which case, it is advisable to go for filling material that will not cause any adverse reactions. There are some companies that use a mixture of cotton and polyester pellets that do not pose a risk of allergic reactions.

4. The Design

Important design points to consider:

  • Is the weight evenly distributed?
  • Is the blanket easy to wash?
  • Are the dimensions right for your bed? A weighted blanket should be smaller than your bed so that it doesnt fall to one side of the bed.

Who Should Not Use Weight Blanket?

Weighted blanket for anxiety should not be used a person with the following conditions:

  • Respiratory problems
  • Menopause

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How Weighted Blankets Work

Weighted blankets act like a hug, using a technique called deep pressure stimulation to make the user feel more secure. This is a deep touch pressure applied to the body by hands, tools, or blankets that can relax the nervous system.

Temple Grandin first discovered deep pressure therapy when searching for something to ease the anxiety of children on the autistic spectrum. She wanted to provide something for these patients that didnt feel confining or restricting, so she came up with a hug machine that applied gentle pressure to the body. When she did this, she noticed a release of oxytocin in her patients.

Using this research, weighted blankets were developed. They give a similar experience to the hug machine by lightly pressing on the body and stimulating a similar release of oxytocin.

Weighted blankets act as a form of deep pressure therapy that can increase the amount of dopamine and serotonin in the brain. These are feel good chemicals that can cause the user to feel a sense of calm, happiness, and well-being. Weighted blankets have been used to treat symptoms of autism, sensory processing disorder, and depression for this reason.

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Where Can I Get A Weighted Blanket For A Child With Anxiety

Get under a Weighted Blanket to help your Anxiety and ...

Weighted blankets for a child with anxiety can be found with a simple google search. If youre reading this however, youre already ahead of the game and in the right place! The Dreamland Baby weighted sleep blanket:

  • Naturally reduces stress and increases relaxation while providing security to help children feel calm.
  • The safe, durable design features hypoallergenic, fine-grade glass beads that are securely contained within the blankets inner pockets.
  • The evenly distributed, gentle pressure mimics the feeling of being hugged and encourages comfort and relaxation.
  • Use while relaxing, for virtual school, during nap time and bedtime.

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How To Buy The Weighted Blanket Of Your Dreams

Heres what you should consider when choosing your new weighted blanket.

  • Price. Keep your budget in mind when shopping around for weighted blankets. There are dreamy options for less money you just might sacrifice longevity or durability after a wash or two. Always look to reviews to see what real customers have to say about the products value for the price.
  • Materials. Nubby, plush polyester will feel cozy when youre cold. Breathable tencel will help keep hot sleepers cool. Weigh the materials quality and breathability against your sleep needs and preferences.
  • Weight. Heavier doesnt always = better. In general, opt for a blanket that is 5 to 10 percent of your body weight. When in doubt, go lighter. Fortunately, most brands offer their blankets in a variety of weights.
  • Size. Weighted blankets arent usually designed to cover the whole bed. Theyre basically a smidge bigger than your body. But if your partner wants to get in on the cocooning action too, opt for a double-sized weighted blanket.

What Is It Like To Sleep Under A Weighted Blanket

Sleeping with a Weighted Blanket is not unlike a regular blanket. The weight is evenly distributed across your body, and you can still move and rotate. As you lift your arms and legs, you feel some resistance, but its not a struggle.

Here are a few snippets from some of our favorite reviews we have received:

Love sleeping under this thing, it really does help me fall asleep and stay asleep. If it feels too light at first, give it a night or two before deciding you want heavier. I found the 15 lbs to be the perfect weight and Im an average sized adult. The only downside is that every time I spread it out at night my husband yells SHE SLEEPS WITH THE WEIGHT OF A THOUSAND PENGUINS! in his best Game of Thrones voice but that just cant be helped.

Nate

Looks great! Feels great! Super happy with this purchase. I have generalized anxiety disorder and have definitely noticed my head feeling calmer with this over me. I used to get in bed and imagine how awesome it would feel to have tons of blankets on me, this satisfies that urge without adding too much heat.

Sydnee

I sleep so much better and so does my husband

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We Love To Be Cuddled

On top of all of this science, cozying up under a Napper brings a sense of warmth, relief, and security often described as similar to a hug. A weighted blanket naturally mimics this comforting sensation that our bodies are designed to crave.

Ever wonder why babies sleep better when theyre swaddled? Our knitted weighted blankets draw on the same concept of applying gentle full-body pressure to help grownups struggling with stress or anxiety. Who knew that a bit of delightful pressure was the ticket to more calm and better sleep?

Along with wrapping up in a cozy Napper or Nappling, its helpful to incorporate complementary stress-reducing strategies like:

  • Maintaining a balanced diet
  • Staying connected dont underestimate the power of a good laugh with a loved one

Is It Ok To Sleep With A Weighted Blanket Every Night

Weighted Blankets. Do they help with anxiety?

The therapeutic benefits of a weighted blanket are best felt when used consistently. It’s a little bit like training your brain your weighted blanket is telling your body every night that you are safe and well. The sense of comfort this provides trains our bodies to release those “happy hormones”… leaving us feeling calmer and more peaceful the next day.

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Why Weighted Blankets Help

Weve scratched the surface of deep touch therapy in weighted blankets, but why does the comforting pressure of DTP work?

The power of the hug all circles back to the beauty of hormone regulation, specifically our stress and feel-good ones. Lets dive deeper into why these wonderful little hormones are so important.

Mostly, we want to praise our happy hormones, including oxytocin, serotonin, and dopamine, and commend your weighted blanket on decreasing cortisol as well, a major stress hormone. Here are our major players:

Regulating these hormones is vital to managing anxiety and improving our overall health and well-being. DTP assists in this act when we just cant seem to get a grasp. The ultimate result of weighted blankets is the lowering of stimulation and arousal while simultaneously improving rest and relaxation. The hugging sensation that comes from weighted blankets lets the body know that its safe, increasing the release of these happy hormones and thus, creates a relaxed physiological response. Run, dont walk to the purchase button.

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