So probably like you, I had been hearing about weighted blankets benefits all over the internet and the people in the ads looked so darn relaxed! Weighted blankets are super popular lately and the offered benefits of weighted blankets intrigued me. But did they really work? Would I have less stress and anxiety; would my insomnia improve? Would it help me sleep and so I would wake up refreshed and relaxed?
So I ordered a weighted blanket from Mosaic, I weigh 135 lbs so I went for a 15 pound weighted blanket (if you are in between weights they recommend getting the heavier one). I could not wait to get it and luckily shipping was fast. I pulled it out and it felt really heavy even though it was just a bit more than a bag of potatoes. However the fabric was soft and the color was perfect.
I got into bed, at first, it was strange to sleep under it and to be honest I felt a little restricted but once I got used to the feeling, I fell in love and now I can’t imagine ever sleeping without it.
My Anxiety Melted Away
I felt like I was wrapped in a cocoon, as if the blanket was giving me a great big hug, it helped my whole body relax. That feeling is most likely responsible for the calming effects I felt from it. Also, since the weighted blanket keeps your more restricted, it tended to keep my body to more still. This is one of the weighted blankets benefits that truly surprised me.
I Feel Asleep Fast and Stayed Asleep
I was able to fall asleep easier and stay asleep which is pretty rare for me. I didn’t wake up once in the middle of the night and I woke up refreshed. I have fallen asleep in under 5 minutes since I have been using the Mosaic Weighted blanket and I have not had any nights of tossing and turning and staring at the ceiling.
But is there really any tangible evidence to support all the seemingly wonderful weighted blanket benefits?
WHAT ARE WEIGHTED BLANKETS — AND HOW DO THEY WORK?
A weighted blanket is a blanket with a filled with a material such as plastic pellets (typically 10 pounds or more) that distribute pressure evenly over your body to help you decompress. It feels like you’re being hugged, I’m serious. It’s like the adult version of being swaddled like a baby. The theory is that the deep pressure you feel from being under all of that weight has a calming effect.
For a study published in the “Journal of the Formosan Medical Association,” participants undergoing wisdom tooth removal (which the researchers identified as one of the most stressful medical procedures) wore weighted blankets during their surgeries. Under the weighted blankets, the patients showed more activity in the part of the nervous system that is in control during times of low stress.
One of the original weighted blanket benefits is for treating children with conditions such as autism and ADHD. “It’s absolutely true that some kids benefit from compression, either from weighted blankets or stretchy Lycra sleeping bags [which also provide deep pressure],” says Lynelle Schneeberg, PsyD, board-certified sleep psychologist and director of the behavioral sleep program at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.
A study published in “The American Journal of Occupational Therapy” found that elementary school aged students who wore weighted vests paid attention more and fidgeted less in class.
Use caution however, if my cat got caught under the blanket, he probably wouldn’t be able to move under the weight of mine. The same is true for babies, toddlers, and anyone under 50 pounds. If you are getting one for a child, the weight would be much less 3-5 lbs only.
HOW TO PICK THE RIGHT WEIGHTED BLANKET FOR YOU
If you are going to try a weighted a blanket, keep in mind that they can get pricey. For example my 15 lb blanket was $199 (but shipping was free). (If you’re crafty, you can DIY your own version — here’s a DIY weighted blanket tutorial.)
If you are going to purchase one, and I highly recommend that you do, most experts advise choosing one that’s roughly 10 percent of your body weight plus a few pounds — so if you’re 150 pounds, you should buy a 15-17-pound blanket.
Weighted Blanket Benefits: Not Just for Sleeping
What surprised me the most is that I reach for my weighted blanket during the day as well. Sometimes while I am on the computer or reading I drape it over my shoulders to help keep my shoulders down and to make me feel less stressed. You just feel like you’re being pushed into the surface underneath you and that everything is going to be okay. Its so nice a cozy for watching TV as well.
Is it Worth It?
I think it’s important to invest in things that make you feel good so for me, yes. Also, if you have a friend or a family member who struggles with anxiety or mental health issues consider buying one of these, they make a great gift. They can be expensive but I promise you, it’s worth it for all the weighted blanket benefits and cozy sleep.
The additional weight keeps you calm, reduces anxiety, can help you stay focused. It also helps with any circulation issues and a whole bunch of other things and a weighted blanket may just help you put those sleepless nights behind you. If you want the ultimately anti-anxiety evening, have a nice relaxing bath before brewing an anxiety-fighting tea and curling up with your blanket.
I just love mine and I can’t imagine sleeping without it, it’s definitely my new obsession in my wellness journey.
Where Can I Buy a Weighted Blanket?
There are lots of place to buy a weighted blanket. I purchased mine through Mosaic online, and am happy with my purchase. Mosaic has tons of colors, fabrics and sizes to choose from. You can even Choose from Dozens of Patterns for your Custom Cotton Mosaic Weighted Blanket!
You can also find weighed blankets on Amazon.
If you have not made up your mind yet if a weighted blanket is right for you or if the weighted blanket benefits are worth it, try this sleep hack in the meantime:
The 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise
- Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound.
- Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of 4
- Hold your breath for a count of 7
- Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound to a count of 8
- This is one breath. Now inhale again and repeat the cycle three more times for a total of four breaths.
Apparently the most important part of this process is holding your breath for eight seconds. This is because keeping the breath in will allow oxygen to fill your lungs and then circulate throughout the body and creates the relaxing effect in your body.
Whatever you decide to do, I wish you sweet dreams!