Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Reviewing The Benefits Of Weighted Blankets

 


I recently purchased a weighted blanket. Ours is by Sleepeasy, but now many companies are producing them. 

I had read about them for a while and thought they may be helpful to me. Going through perimenopause has been quite stressful with many disrupted nights and I hoped it may help. There have always been other priorities but when I saw this one for a reduced price I could not resist!

They are essentially a heavy blanket filled with beads or similar in strongly stitched pockets or squares weighting between around 5 to 30 pounds and certainly heavier than a normal blanket or most quilts. They purport to produce a deep pressure stimulation that is said to relax the nervous system similar to a great big bear hug, except this comes from having the blanket wrapped around you.


What Are The Benefits Of A Weighted Blanket?

Weighted blankets are said to have several benefits. I have read that researchers are still studying the effects for physical and emotional benefits. 

Benefits so far are mainly listed as being helpful to reduce anxiety, relieve stress, aid restful sleep and essentially to give the body a big relaxing hug. Many people say that they have a fantastic sleep while using one. 

However, I cannot verify them so do your research and it is best to buy one based on whether you like it and feel you personally receive benefits from it. Any other benefits would be a bonus. 

If we choose to use them it should be because we find them comfortable and personally helpful.



What I Like About The Weighted Blanket

I like the colour of ours being a dark grey it goes with everything. I think I would always choose a dark neutral colour for these blankets as it is more versatile. They do come in many colours though so choose whichever suits you and your decor. 

I do like the way in mine that the beads are contained in individual pockets so they do not move about very much at all and the stitching is very strong and secure.

I have taken to draping the weighted blanket over me and hubby in the evenings while watching a film and draped over the sofa it looks great in our living room and not like just something for bedtime.

I do enjoy the feeling of a big hug and find it very relaxing. Hubby found it so relaxing the first time we tried the weighted blanket that within 15 minutes he fell asleep and did not see the film!!

It is warm, but surprisingly not too warm. When I use it I sleep really well without waking up several times as usual.

My personal experience is that I like to feel the weight of it over my body and find that feeling very calming and relaxing. I can never rest properly with only a light sheet for covering, so I was always going to be a good candidate for a heavier blanket. 

The first night I used it I did not struggle to drop off to sleep which for me usually takes about an hour. Now it is much less than that. I did not wake up all night and usually since starting perimenopause I have woken up two or three times every night. 

It is warm, but I bought it in late autumn and since then it has not been too warm. I am not sure if it will be too warm in the summer yet.

I do not feel that it is too heavy when using it as a blanket. Carrying it around I feel it is very heavy, but once on the bed, to me, it just feels comforting.




Can Everyone Use A Weighted Blanket?

Weighted blankets are generally safe for healthy adults, older children and teenagers. 

However, they are not suitable for everyone. If you are considering using a weighted blanket for an adult that has any underlying health conditions or for a child of any age please consult with a qualified healthcare practitioner first to ensure that it is safe for you to use.  

Our weighted blanket is for adults. It should not weigh more than about 10% of your body weight and so would be unsuitable for a child to use.

You can buy children's weighted blankets specifically for them although please check with a doctor first that it is suitable for your child.

Weighted blankets should never be used for a child under age 2 or older children with developmental difficulties or learning difficulties due to the risk of suffocation.

They are not recommended for people with epilepsy in case the person has a seizure under the blanket.

The heaviness of a weighted blanket may cause difficulties for people with certain pre-existing conditions, such as Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), Asthma and sleep apnea where any breathing issues may be exacerbated and diabetes where any circulation issues may be further affected by the heaviness of the blanket. In people with Claustrophobia, a weighted blanket can feel too heavy and restrictive. Please always check with a Dr first if you have any health conditions.

As it is heavy I would not recommend it for anyone who likes only a light covering. When I took it out of the box it was so heavy I thought I would not like it. However, in my experience, it does not feel anywhere near as heavy on the body as it does when carrying it or moving it.



Things To Bear In Mind About A Weighted Blanket

The way the beads are stitched into the covering is something to watch out for in any of these blankets. I have read that in some blankets the beads fall into uncomfortable clumps when the individual pockets are too large or too weak.

You do need to look for quality design so the beads are held in their separate individual pockets and remain comfortable. The stitching needs to be secure and strong. 

Check if there is a washable cover or if the whole blanket is washable. Or do you need to handwash and is this practical for you? Some are dry clean or spot clean. You need to choose whichever suits you best. 

If the whole blanket is washable check if it will fit into your washing machine.

Personally, I would use this blanket over a sheet so that it does not require washing so much, or use a cover. I wash our sheets and covers on at least a weekly basis and I would not want to be washing this blanket every week. However, used as a blanket over a sheet or with a washable cover it will need washing much less. 

Check the size you need. You want it big enough to cover your chest to toe and some drape at the sides but not enough so it is falling off you onto the floor as that will be uncomfortable. Remember the bigger it is the heavier it will be to move around and also to wash. In hindsight, I would probably have gone for a single size as it is mainly me using it. 

I would go for the smallest size you are comfortable with using. If you are using it for yourself only I think a single size may be better. Or if there are two of you then either a double or two single sizes to give more versatility.

Check if there is a trial period and returns policy if you do not get on with it as it is such a personal item. 




Washing Weighted Blankets

I think the only concern I personally have is that my double bed sized one is so heavy my washing machine will not accommodate it.  

However, being dark grey and using it over a sheet or quilt in bed hopefully, it will not need washing so often.

To improve it I feel a detachable cover I the same colour would have been most useful.

I have now found a quilt cover that will fit to sort this issue when using it for sleep purposes. So will treat the blanket as I do our quilts. When using it in the living room we use it without the cover. 




Final Thoughts On A Weighted Blanket

You do importantly need to check if you have any health conditions if you are fine to use a weighted blanket.

If healthwise you are ok to use a weighted blanket and you like the feeling of a heavier cover you may find this type of blanket very relaxing. If you enjoy a light covering in bed you may not like this but if you like the feel of a comforting hug and the feeling of a heavier cover on your body you may well take to it. 

I cannot recall the last time I slept so well and so soundly since we had this blanket. 

Do your research and make sure you can return and refund if you do not get on with it. Give it a week or so to get used to it. I took to it immediately but some people have said it takes them a while. 

A good night's sleep is extremely important to me I do not function well on a disturbed sleep so this has made a huge difference to me.

Before buying a weighted blanket do your own research and see if it will be right for you. This is a very personal choice and requires some thought.

Weighted blankets will not suit everyone. However, if they do suit you they can make a big difference to the way you relax and sleep. I am very glad I got mine and as I am getting a much sounder sleep I am feeling much better these days. 







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11 comments:

  1. Interesting review, Jasmine, as I had wondered about this product. In the wintertime, I prefer heavier covers over me. Somehow it feels warmer to me to have the weight, but perhaps it is due to the hugging pressure type comfort as you describe. I had thought about getting a weighted blanket, so I do appreciate knowing your thoughts and experience with one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!If you like heavier covers you may like a weighted blanket. For me it is more comforting. I have not found it necessarily warmer than our big quilt but certainly heavier. I have only used it in cooler weather so far though.

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  2. For quite a while I've been considering a weighted blanket - I appreciate all of this information. I place heavy blankets on our bed because we both like the weight of the blankets - Also the health issues you pointed out about using one of these, I had no idea about. I don't have health issues in those areas, so I would be ok, and hubby too - Also, the fact that you pointed out better not to get a blanket that's more than 10% of your body weight was something I didn't know. Also, the beads, and the washing of it .... thanks for that information

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    Replies
    1. A weighted blanket has been on my list for about 2 years! If you both like heavier blankets and no health reasons not to use one it may be worth seeing how you get on with one.Yes you do not want one that is too heavy for you or that will be uncomfortable. There are quite a few things to consider and its so individual so I tried to include a range of considerations. Always worth getting a quality one with a money back guarantee though in case you simply do not get on with it.

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  3. I've never slept under a weighted blanket before. I actually didn't know there was such a thing. I've made curtains before that use weights and I am very familiar with needing the small pockets for drapery weights instead of allowing them to be "free floating" and bunch together. I can see how that would be imperative with a blanket. I sure like the idea of staying warm!

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    Replies
    1. I find sleeping under a weighted blanket really comforting, especially if I feel a bit tense or stressed it really helps then.I took to it straight away but it can take time to get used to and some people do not like the feel of it.There is a lot to consider. You are completely right about the small pockets of beads, they need to be securely stitched so they cannot free float and bunch up or that is really uncomfortable. You would have no problems being able to spot quality stitching in a blanket!

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  4. Like you, I have a lot of trouble falling asleep and recently purchased a weighted blanket. Since my husband has sleep apnea, I chose a twin size, 15-lb. weighted blanket for myself. I find it extremely relaxing and, like you, have used it while sitting on the couch as well as when lying in bed.

    Since I sleep on my side and turn from one side to the other multiple times during the night, I found that sleeping under it through the night was problematic, as its weight restricted my ability to move easily. If I had it to do over, I would definitely have purchased a 12-lb. weighted blanket instead.

    So, I have started getting into bed with the blanket over me and then folding it back down to the foot of the bed when I finally feel ready to drift off. I also find this blanked very calming to use during the day when I'm distressed or anxious.

    I, too, chose a well-made, neutral grey weighted blanket. Mine is made by Layla and has glass micro-beads sandwiched between two layers of poly-fill batting with hexagonal stitched pockets for even weight distribution. The outer shell has a smooth, tightly woven cotton fabric on the bottom and a silky, ultra soft fleece top, which I really like!

    You have done a terrific job of laying out the key considerations and selection criteria for purchasing a weighted blanket. I wish I had been able to read your post before I purchased mine - it would have saved me a lot of research! :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thank you for your kind words, I appreciate that. I did try to lay out the considerations that I thought would be most important as there is a lot to consider. I am happy that you like your weighted blanket, it sounds lovely and it makes such a difference and extremely relaxing as you say. Your point about the turning from side to side while sleeping and it being a bit heavy for that is interesting. I agree in that case a lighter weight one may suit you better, but you have found a solution which suits you. I found that before the weighted blanket I would move around quite a lot especially if I was worried about something or just tense, but using the weighted blanket has helped me to relax in one position for longer.However I would buy the same weight but a single next time for just less material. We are all so individual with our sleep habits and patterns. I also agree that it is so relaxing to watch TV or read with the weighted blanket, just great for de-stressing !

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  6. I hav3 looked at these with interest. I do not sleep well at all and thought that this might be the answer for me, but, I really hate being covered up at night and most of the time throw off whatever blankets are on me or I bunch them up on my hubbies side of the bed. Unfortunately for me, I don't think this will be a good combination to induce better sleep. My hubby on the other hand might really enjoy this. I will have to check into a trial for him. Thanks for this review Jasmine!

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    Replies
    1. Oh not sleeping well is such a pain! Sleep is so individual.I think the answer here may be to try out a single weighted blanket with a good money-back guarantee to see if your hubby gets on with it. Maybe go for a weighted blanket at the lighter end of the scale. Then you can also try it out and see if it is helpful to you. It might be something you could use in the evenings while watching TV/reading and have over you before you go to sleep to relax you, then take it off.

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  7. I have read about these weighted blankets and considered buying one. I sometimes have trouble falling asleep I think this might help based on tour review. Thanks for all the information.

    ReplyDelete

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