What Is the Scientific Basis For Why People Chase Weighted Blankets
In the United States, Courtney Kardashian, Emmy winner Tiffany Hardish, is using the weight blanket; in China, stars such as Chen Xuedong recommend his weight blanket on the popular entertainment channel Hunan Satellite TV.They were followed by countless ordinary sleepless people.What is the scientific basis for why people chase weighted blankets？
Who can benefit from weighted blankets?
Weighted blankets can be beneficial for sleep disorders of any kind. Though studies are limited, they may help with insomnia, falling asleep, and staying asleep.
"Weighted blankets have been quite the phenomenon over the last year or so," said Bill Fish, certified sleep science coach and co-founder of Tuck, an organization designed to improve sleep health and wellness. "People are beginning to understand the benefits of using a weighted blanket to set themselves up to get the recommended seven to nine hours of quality sleep on a nightly basis."
According to a 2015 study, “It has been suggested that weighted blankets and vests can provide a beneficial calming effect, especially in clinical disorders… A weighted blanket… may provide an innovative, non-pharmacological approach and complementary tool to improve sleep quality.”
Conditions that might benefit from weighted blankets include:
restless leg syndrome
autism spectrum disorder
sensory processing disorder
Why weighted blankets work
Laura LeMond, owner of Mosaic Weighted Blankets, believes that weighted blankets are increasingly popular because naturally you learn to relax under the weight, fall asleep more quickly, and begin to love your blanket so it becomes a natural, comforting sleep solution.
The 2015 study noted above showed that 31 participants who slept with weighted blankets had a calmer night's sleep, with less tossing and turning. The subjects believed that using the blanket provided them with a more comfortable, better quality, and more secure sleep.
How to pick the perfect weighted blanket for you
Weighted blankets weigh anywhere from five to 30 pounds. A wide range of weights are available, but how do you know which is right for you?
Your own weight will help you determine the right blanket weight.
The general guideline? 10 percent of your own body weight.
Both Fish and LeMond agree that the ideal weighted blanket is 10 percent of your ideal body weight so that it fits your frame. For children or older adults the formula is 10 percent of body weight plus one to two pounds.
That said, if you’re finding it difficult to roll over under the blanket and feel like you’re trapped, going lighter is better. Just remember that based on limited scientific studies done on weighted blankets, going lighter than 10 percent of your body weight may not have the same benefits.
“By utilizing a blanket that is roughly 10 percent of your body weight, you feel like the blanket is hugging your body, giving you a sense of calmness, which can reduce stress, as well as help you to stay asleep so your body can go through the necessary stages of sleep to allow you to wake up fully rested,” notes Fish.
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