Many children and adults with ADHD benefit from using a weighted blanket. But also for HSP's and people who suffer from autism, the weighted blanket can offer some symptom relief.
How does it work, and what should we pay attention to, when buying a weighted blanket? Is it safe to use, also for young children? We asked the people in our community to share their experiences, and we did some research. Expect answers to the frequently asked questions about the weighted blanked for ADHD.
What is a weighted blanket?
A weighted blanket, also called a therapeutic weighted blanket, is a blanket that helps us sleep and relax. As you probably understand, this is perfect for children and adults with ADHD.
These comforting blankets are weighted with about 7-12% of our body weight. Because a weighted blanket gives us the feeling that we are being held or cuddled, it helps us to relax our nervous system. As a result, our body naturally produces more melatonin and serotonin. Melatonin and serotonin are the hormones that provide relaxation and tranquility. Stress is relieved, and a sense of calm is created in our body by putting pressure on our body.
Why is the weighted blanket perfect for ADHD?
The weighted blanket works on the principle of Deep Pressure Stimulation (DDS). With Deep Pressure Stimulation, pressure is exerted on the body, which increases the release of serotonin (the happiness hormone) in the brain. This technique gives a feeling of deep security, and it ensures a deep and healthy sleep.
Many children and adults with ADHD, autism and HSP have sensory problems, in other words, suffer from overstimulation. In addition, HSP's and people with ADHD often find it difficult to relax. Sleeping problems are also common. The weighted blanket can therefore offer a solution for HSP and ADHD.
People who are highly sensitive or have ADHD also often suffer from overstimulation. Because the weighted blanket provides an extra release of the hormones serotonin and melatonin, overstimulation is reduced and relaxation is stimulated.
Types of weighted blankets for ADHD
Weighted blankets are filled with glass beads or plastic pellets, which provide extra weight. Some weighted blankets use extra layers of fabric to make them a little heavier. The weighted blanket is available in different sizes and materials, and in different weight classes. As a result, they can be used by children, teenagers and adults.
Material of the weighted blanket
Weighted blankets are made of different materials. The most commonly used materials are pure cotton, cotton blends, polyester, fleece, flannel and bamboo.
Personally, I would always – especially if you are sensitive (have ADHD or are an HSP) – opt for a weighted blanket made of natural material, such as cotton or bamboo.
If you really want to give yourself or your child a great experience, and if you are going for more luxury, coziness and comfort, then you might opt for an extra soft luxury weighted blanket made of cotton. Such a blanket is of course a lot more expensive than a simple variant.
Don't have a budget at all? You can of course also make your own weighted blanket.
Weighted blanket material if you are hypersensitive
Especially when you are hypersensitive like the Wandering Minds, the choice of the fabric is important. Also keep this in mind when you buy a weighted blanket for your child. Sensitive children can also have a strong preference for a specific fabric, especially if they have sensory problems.
Who is the weighted blanket suitable for?
The weighted blanket is used by people who have difficulty calming, relaxing or sleeping. Occupational therapists have been using these weighted blankets for years to help children with sensory problems and anxiety disorders. The weighted blanket is also used for children and adults with ADHD and autism. We regularly read positive experiences with the weighted blanket of people who are highly sensitive (HSP). More and more HSP's are opting for the weighted blanket.
Anyone who has difficulty relaxing and is easily overstimulated can benefit from the weighted blanket.
Is the weighted blanket safe for everyone?
The weighted blanket is suitable for children, but only from a certain age. For example, the weighted blanket is not suitable for very young children – babies and toddlers. They can pose security risks. For example, the beads or pellets could fall out of the blanket and pose a choking hazard to babies and young children. The blanket should never cover a child's head.
Weighted blanket experiences: positive
Both children and adults share, in our community and on Instagram, that they experience more peace and sleep better with a weighted blanket. Mothers indicate that they now have to wake their child, where the child barely slept before. Some parents use it to relax on the couch with their child.
I now sleep well thanks to a sleeping ritual, and very occasionally I use natural sleep supplements. But when I read the enthusiastic experiences with the weighted blanket, I consider buying one as well.
I myself would opt for a weighted blanket made of bamboo, because this is natural, breathes well and stays cool.
Negative experiences with the weighted blanket
We also looked for people who shared negative experiences with the weighted blanket. But we could not find any negative reviews or shared experiences with the weighted blanket.
Some people indicate that they move a lot during sleep. Because of that, the blanket is not always comfortable because it's a bit harder to move. Partners who share their bed sometimes find it annoying that the weighted blanket is just too small share. They, regret not buying a larger size.
What's your experience with the weighted blanket?
Hopefully the information in this article has helped you in deciding whether to buy a weighted blanket for your (or your child's) ADHD challenges.
The weighted blanket is becoming increasingly popular among people with ADHD and HSP. But adults and children with autism also say they benefit from the weighted blanket. Are you going to buy a weighted blanket and try it out? Or maybe you already have experience with the weighted blanket? We would love to hear your experience, please share a few words in the comments!
Other ways to find relief
Many children and adults with ADHD, ADD, HSP and autism seem to benefit from the weighted blanket. Are you going to buy a weighted blanket, or would you rather try other options first? In the following articles you will find more information and tips for rest, relaxation and sleep.
- Natural ways to boost serotonin
- The best natural alternatives to Valium
- The Wim Hof method for improved concentration and relaxation
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