A weighted blanket is typically a large, heavy blanket used for various purposes to help reduce stress and sleep. At first, weighted blankets were primarily used as therapeutic aids to help people with neurological disabilities, autism, and other psychological conditions. However, they have since become a common mass-market item. Today, these blankets can be found in many fine department stores and departmental stores all over the country. There are even some supermarkets that carry them.
The original intent of the weighted blanket was to prevent excessive weight from causing medical conditions such as comatose. However, it was also used for people with sleeping problems, such as obstructive sleep apnea, snoring, restless legs syndrome, and OSA (opacity sleep disorder). These individuals would often experience an inability to fall asleep or stay asleep due to the extreme weight of their bodies. Therefore, it was felt that placing these individuals in a warm blanket would allow them to relax enough to fall asleep and experience a good night’s rest.
Although originally, these blankets were designed for people with sleeping disorders, they are now used to nappling. Nappling is the practice of using a weighted blanket on your body to reduce stress, which can alleviate pain or discomfort. Studies have shown that a stress reduction has led to an increase in bodily comfort and sleep. Napping has also been found to promote increased healing and repair of tissue damage, such as athletes who must re-injure parts of their bodies after strenuous exercise.
In providing better sleep, it has been found that nappling with a weighted blanket offers a more relaxed resting position. When you lay on your back, gravity naturally pulls your spine downward. Using this napping method, you are afforded a better sleeping position, where gravity does not pull you out of bed. Another benefit of these blankets is that they are not heavy, making them easy to carry around. Another plus is that you do not need a professional to come into your home and place them on your back. Instead, you can sit down in a comfortable spot, like the sofa, bed or couch, and start napping.
People with sensory processing disorders (SAD) have found great success using a weighted blanket to gain a better night’s rest. These individuals suffer from many symptoms of sensitivity to light, sound, touch, temperatures, heights, and many other sensory aspects of everyday life. Individuals with SAD have difficulty relaxing in the right position, making it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep. A weighted blanket placed on the body in the right position allows them to relax in a conducive to sleep.
There are many reasons why people use these blankets for relaxation. One of the main reasons is to reduce stress levels, which is known to contribute to insomnia. Research studies have shown that individuals who perform regularly have less anxiety, greater physical and mental health, and a reduced chance of insomnia. A weighted blanket used for sensory therapy can also reduce stress levels, anxiety and depression. These blankets have been used for patients who have undergone extensive cognitive behavioural therapy and those suffering from depression and SAD. The results show a reduction in moodiness, increased confidence, better sleep, improved muscle tone, and an overall sense of calmness and well-being.