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The Effects and Health Benefits of Using a Weighted Blanket

Weighted blankets have become available for mainstream use just several years ago. Their popularity has skyrocketed due to the great press and many satisfied users. Available as highest quality products with a great range of choice from regular to queen size blanket, no wonder they have gotten a lot of attention. In the myriad of fads in the health industry, that come and go causing more harm than good, the weighted blanket is not at all a trend, nor it is something that will eventually be forgotten.

The weighted blanket is a therapeutic tool, invented long before it has entered mainstream use. This tool has been successfully used in acute psychiatry for several decades, known for the powerful effects in helping patients with serious psychological disorders. Today, people are aware that no person is immune to psychological problems and how their effects are the common cause of many illnesses, physical health problems and low life quality. 

Therefore, it was just a question of time for this magical blanket to become the therapeutic tool each person will benefit from. Are you still wondering what is the great power of the weighted blanket and how it can help you deal with problems and boost your overall health? You will find the explanation below.

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The Blanket
The weighted blanket, also known as the gravity blanket resembles a regular one with the main difference in the weight. The additional weight of the blanket comes from microbeads that are used as a filling inside the fabric. Depending on the manufacturer the fillings can be made of plastic or glass. 

Each person should choose the weight carefully. The weighted blanket, the person is using should weigh from 8% to 10% of their specific body weight. Choosing the appropriate weight is the most important segment if one wants to enjoy the benefits of the weight to the fullest. 

The Effect
How can a slight increase in the weight that is put onto the body have any positive effects? Maybe the first thing that comes to your mind when imagining sleeping with a weighted blanket is that it will make you uncomfortable. Now think again, what makes us feel most secure, soothed and calm? A hug! The pressure of the weight of another’s person body onto our skin feels great. The blanket is trying to resemble the same effect.

As it is scientifically proven, hugs have positive effects on the body and the weighted blanket acts similarly. When covered with the blanket, its weight puts a tender pressure on the body. This pressure is known as the deep touch pressure or DTP and it stimulates the nerve endings beneath the skin. Ones triggered, these nerve endings send signals to the central nervous system resulting in consecutive changes that affect the functioning of the nervous system. And you already assume, these changes affect the body in a positive way. 

The Changes
The weighted blanket sort of acts like a switch. More or less, it causes an instant change in the function of the nervous system. As mentioned above, the triggered nerve endings start to send signals. These signals carry information that the body is safe, secure and the central nervous system instantly activates the parasympathetic system also known as the rest and digest state of the body.

When the nervous system puts the body in the rest and digest state the hormonal secretion in the body changes. Moreover, the parasympathetic system uses the so-called hormones of “happiness” endorphins, dopamine, serotonin. These hormones result in chemical reactions that promote calmness, satisfaction, resting and sleeping mood, the muscles relax and the heart rate slows down.

Copyright: Unsplash I License: CC0 Public Domain

The Benefits of the Changes
The longer the body stays under the command of the parasympathetic nervous system all organs and systems in the body benefit. In other words, the benefits of the effect of the weighted blanket are numerous.

If your body is fighting an illness, a good night’s sleep is essential for the strengthening of the organism. Sleeping with a weighted blanket will help your body accumulate more energy through quality sleep and recover better and faster.

If you are dealing with insomnia, despite the cause, lack of sleep on a daily basis will lead to a weakening of the immune system resulting in serious health problems and possible psychological disorders. The weighted blanket provides a sound and calm sleep. Taking all of the explained above, the DTP helps the body fall asleep easily, fast and stay in undisrupted sleep longer, meaning it will easily fight off the insomnia problems. 

If you are dealing with prolonged stress, depression or anxiety, experiencing insomnia and disrupted sleep as a symptom is very common. The insomnia symptom is only worsening the condition by weakening the body and increasing the mental fog. With the weighted blanket and a good night’s sleep, your body and mind are ready to fight the disorder giving you a clear mind to think and act in fighting the problem.

1 comment

  1. Interesting article. I have been considering getting one.


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