what is a weighted blanket?

What is a weighted blanket?

A weighted blanket is – simply – a blanket that is deliberately made heavier than an ordinary blanket. The weight comes from its bead filling, which is evenly distributed through the whole blanket.

These heavy blankets help relieve stress and anxiety. This, in turn:

  • Helps you go to sleep quicker and stay asleep for longer;
  • Calm down if you are overexcited or having a meltdown; and
  • Focus.

How does a weighted blanket work?

Weighted blankets use Deep Pressure Touch. This is firm yet gentle pressure applied to the body – almost like a hug. This pressure triggers two reactions in the body that result in feelings of peace and calm.

These reactions both take place in the central nervous system.

The body’s nervous system is made up of two parts: the sympathetic nervous system and the parasympathetic nervous system.

  • The sympathetic nervous system is the “ready to act” part of the body. It’s in control whenever you face a dangerous or stressful situation. It’s the “fight or flight” response.
  • In contrast, the parasympathetic calms both the body and the mind. When it is in charge, your muscles relax and your heart rate slows.

Reaction #1: Deep Pressure Touch shuts off the “fight or flight” response

The first thing Deep Pressure Touch does is to “switch off” the sympathetic nervous system (the “fight or flight” instinct).

(You will naturally feel anxious, on edge and very, very tired if the sympathetic nervous system is in control of your body for long time periods.)

Then, the Deep Pressure Touch activates the parasympathetic nervous system.

This makes you feel calm and peaceful.

When the parasympathetic system is in charge, your muscles relax and your heart rate will slow down.

Reaction #2: Deep Pressure Touch causes your body to release “happy hormones” naturally

Next, the parasympathetic nervous system also releases endorphins – the “feel good” hormones that are also activated by exercise.

And then it triggers your body to release serotonin. This is one of the brain’s “happy” neuro-transmitters.

  • Serotonin helps regulate sleep, social behaviour, mood, appetite, digestion and memory.

So then, weighted blankets work due to the combined action of switching from the “flight or fight” response to a calm state of mind – plus the natural release of “feel good” chemicals in the body.

Who can benefit from using a weighted blanket?

A weighted blanket’s Deep Pressure Touch can help relieve anxiety. Medical professionals – like occupational therapists – recommend weighted blankets for patients who have:

  • Autism;
  • Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD);
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD);
  • Dementia;
  • Insomnia;
  • Restless leg syndrome;
  • High levels of anxiety and stress; or
  • Sensory disorders.

Is there scientific proof that weighted blankets help?

There have been a number of clinical studies that have objectively measured the calming effects of Deep Pressure Touch on the body.

One clinical study found that use of deep pressure touch device resulted in reduced stress and feelings of calmness in as little as three minutes in adults. It measured this through collecting heart rate and respiration data by putting electrodes on the study participants’ chest and back. It also measured skin conductance to assess the level of sympathetic nervous system activity.

A second study specifically studied the safety and effectiveness of a weighted blanket on 32 adults.

  • 68% of the study participants reported lower anxiety after using the weighted blanket; and
  • 78% preferred the weighted blanket as a calming tool.

There is another clinical study that caught my eye. It found that “grounding” the human body by weighting it down during sleep reduces the level of cortisol. (Cortisol is the stress hormone.) The study participants reported improved sleep patterns and reduced pain and stress.

Who shouldn’t use a weighted blanket?

However, weighted blankets don’t work for everyone. They will not help anyone who doesn’t like heavy weights on their chest.

In addition, people who have sleep apnea, diabetes or blood circulation problems should not use weighted blankets.

Children and babies under 2 should not use a weighted blanket.

How to use a weighted blanket

You can use your weighted blanket to:

  • Help you go to sleep and stay asleep longer;
  • Calm your panicked and anxious feelings; and
  • Improve your focus on school or other work.

Using a weighted blanket to improve sleep

Just simply put your weighted blanket on your bed and climb in. You can use an electric blanket or other blankets on top of it if it is cold.

Using a weighted blanket to calm anxious feelings

To use your weighted blanket as a calm-down tool, just simply wrap it around you or climb under it. You can either sit or lie.

Using a weighted blanket to improve focus

A weighted blanket’s calming deep pressure touch can help you pay more attention and focus. The calming pressure leaves you more alert and can stop the “wriggles”.

Many adults and children use weighted lap blankets or pads to help pay attention and focus at work or school.

Weighted blankets should never be used as a restraint. Please do not roll anybody up in a weighted blanket.

How heavy should a weighted blanket be?

Occupational therapists recommend that weighted blankets be 10% of the user’s body weight. We recommend adding 1 kg to the blanket weight if you buy a double, queen or king size weighted blanket or quilt insert.

Why a Calming Moments weighted blanket?

Ready to take the next step? Here are some reasons for you to choose a Calming Moments weighted blanket.

  • We make each order individually. That means you can get exactly the weighted blanket that you want.
  • You can choose from our wide range of colours in either cotton or sensory minky fabrics. We can also make your personalised blanket from your choice of printed cotton. And you can embroider your name on it too.
  • We have 20 different weights available, from 2.5kg up to 12.0kg in half kilogram increments. This means that you can get exactly the correct weight for you. (Occupational Therapists recommend that a weighted blanket is 10% of the user’s body weight for the best possible Deep Pressure Touch effect.)
  • We make every weighted blanket to our high quality standards and back it with a 2-year guarantee. That way you can be sure that it is made to last. Each blanket is double-line and triple-stitched on the edges with hems.
  • Our weighted blankets are designed to lie on top of a bed with no overhang. This is best for people with sensory sensitivity.
  • Each pocket in every weighted blanket is carefully sized so that the weights don’t gather and cause undue pressure. This means you get the optimal Deep Pressure Touch effect as the weight is evenly spread over your whole body.
  • We weight the blankets with glass micro-beads. This means that you can’t feel any hard edges (as you can with poly pellets). They’re also silent – so you can sleep better without any rustling or swooshing noises.
  • We fill our weighted blankets with organic bamboo wadding. This helps keep the glass beads spread evenly through the individual pockets – so there is no bunching or pulling. (Bamboo is also a natural anti-bacterial.)
  • Our blankets are all machine-washable on cold, gentle cycle (if your machine can take the weight).
  • We have a wide range of sizes available. Our weighted blankets for beds come in your choice of single, king single, double and queen sized. We also make lap and travel blankets that you can take with you.
  • We at Calming Moments have been making weighted blankets for the past seven years. So, you get all the benefit of our experience and continuous improvement in each and every weighted blanket.
  • And we are certified Australian-made. 

But don’t take our word for it. Here are just a few reviews from our happy customers or you can see more on Facebook here.

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Why customer’s love our products and service:

Reviewer

Easy to order, fantastic service, fast turnaround, product is well made. Highly recommend Calming Moments if you are looking for a weighted blanket, the blanket with micro beads instead of poly pellets is lovely and compact, my child loves it, it’s really helped her to settle at night.

Alicia Dunne / Facebook Review
Reviewer

Thank you Cherise and the team for making another beautiful blanket for us. This is our third one from Calming Moments( have a lap, travel and now double bed size blanket) and I recommend your blankets to family and friends. I love that they are Australian Made and a fantastic quality. Thanks again!

Bel Backus / Facebook Review
Reviewer

I purchased three weighted blankets (one for hubby and I and one for each child) because I was sick of the lack of sleep I was getting due to everyone else. They take a little getting used to after a light feather doona but I absolutely swear by them! My husband (who suffers from a sleep disorder) says that he loves the weighted blanket and it has significantly reduced his need to take sleep medication.

He really noticed the difference when he went away and was without the blanket for a few days. I used to wake up at night and lay awake for ages but this doesn’t happen any more with the weighted blanket. The kids are both much more settled at night as well! Very happy with my purchase and would recommend them to anyone with sleep issues.

Kristen Watts / Facebook Review
Reviewer

I have been using this blanket for 6 months now and it’s definitely the best buy ever in my life. I used to take 2-3hours just to fall asleep and can’t stay asleep because of anxiety. Now I fall asleep within half and hour and stay asleep most of the nights and feel refreshed in the morning. Not to mention that the blanket is very well stitched and the materials used inside the blanket are very fine and soft to touch. I can’t thank you enough for your good work in helping us.

Kevyl NXing / Facebook Review
Reviewer

I have A.D.D and bought a lap pad to sit on my lap at work to help me stay calm and focussed. I’m honestly so impressed with my entire purchase. The pad itself is fantastic and I am way less fidgety when I’m using it, the colour choices are great, and they’re really well made. But the best part by far is the customer service. Your order is updated with notes through the entire process so you know exactly what’s happening and when, and it’s clear the staff are passionate about what they do. Highly recommend.

Ashley Coleman / Facebook Review
Reviewer

Would just like to say that I purchased a weighted blanket for my suspected austism spectrum 4yr old son at Calming moments on recommendations on afterpay page and from friends. I received the blanket in the mail today and my son has hardly left it alone. I would also like to say the craftsmanship in these products are amazing I would rate them 5/5 stars and recommend them to anyone. I will also in the near future be ordering one for my 15 yr old a.d.d son as he keeps stealing it.

Nicole Fisher / Facebook Review
Reviewer

I was so sceptical initially cause I thought ‘well it’s only a blanket’. I read so many reviews and eventually thought fudge it, why not? Best decision I’ve ever made. I love my weighted blanket so much. It’s done wonders for me. I don’t think I’ve ever fallen asleep so fast so consecutively in my life. And it just gives me a sense of calm and protection I didn’t have before. Definitely recommend.

Sarah Jayde / Facebook Review
Reviewer

I ordered a custom made weighted blanket for my little boy who loves planets in the sparkly space material- it’s so beautiful and the service was amazing! It was made and arrived super quick in time for Christmas. The blanket is very well made and I love that it is Machine washable. Highly recommend Calming Moments.

Rebekah Bradley / Facebook Review

Buy your own individual, high quality, Australian-made weighted blanket now by clicking on the menu below.

Our Weighted Blanket Range:

King sizes calming weighted blanket for bed

Weighted Quilt Inserts

Our weighted blanket quilt inserts are great for those who just want to use their own quilt cover. This also has a huge cost saving advantage and is a popular favourite with our customers.

Made from 100% Prewashed Cotton Calico. We have all popular quilt sizes from single to king size.

Save upto 30% OFF on all weighted Quilt Inserts

Shop online now for quilt inserts. from $129
Weighted Blanket Australia

Weighted Blankets for Beds

Designed to sit on top of your bed and come in a variety of colours, printed patterns, textures. Our Dual colour blanket is popular as you can have a different colour each side.

Made from 100% Cotton, add bamboo padding to make even softer and snuggly.

Shop online now for weighted blankets for beds. from $149
neptune blanket

Weighted Travel Blankets

After a bigger weighted blanket that you can take on the go? Or just want a smaller blanket to snuggle up in, then these are a perfect fit. We have also found these to be a favourite item with occupational therapists for their clients so have now released this sizing to the public.

Available in four types depending on your budget and also available with optional cotton padding to make softer and thicker.

Shop online now for weighted travel blankets. from $119
Weighted Blanket Boys

Weighted Lap Blankets

Weighted lap blankets are great for school, the car or even for relaxing in a chair and enjoying the deep pressure relief a weighted blanket provides. Available in different types depending on your budget and also available to have padding inserted for people who would like a softer/thicker blanket.

Shop online now for weighted lap blankets. from $59
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