Benefits of weighted blankets

Weighted blankets have long been used by doctors and occupational therapists to imitate deep pressure touch simulation.  Deep touch pressure can cause the release of oxytocin and serotonin, helping produce a feeling of calm and relaxation and reduction of stress.  The weight of your blanket mimics the security and warmth that a hug or being held provides.  As a result, weighted blankets can offer an alternative way to help those with anxiety and sensory disorders.  

As many as 1 in 3 Americans experience at least mild insomnia (according to the National Sleep Foundation).  Insomnia can have a negative effect on psychological, physiological and social well-being.  In a 2015 study reported in the Journal of Sleep Medicine and Disorders, it was found that a weighted blanket can have a calming effect at night, thus improving the quality of sleep.  The use of a weighted blanket was found to reduce nighttime agitation and movement during sleep.  While sleep medications can be addictive and have negative side effects, weighted blankets are an innovative and drug-free alternative to achieving a restful night of sleep.

Weighted blankets can be used to manage the symptoms of:

  • Sleep disorders or sleeplessness
  • Restless leg disorder
  • Autism
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Nervous system disorders
  • Anxiety

Related research articles:

  1. Positive Effects of a Weighted Blanket on Insomnia, Journal of Sleep Medicine and Disorders, 2015.
  2. Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference.
  3. Australasian Psychiatry: The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists.
  4. Exploring the Safety and Theraputic Effects of Deep Pressure Stimulation Using a Weighted Blanket.