With three members of my family on the Autism Spectrum we are always on the lookout for products that will improve the quality of our lives by reducing stress, help with sensory issues, sleep, and anxiety.
One of our favorite purchases has been multiple weighted blankets. My husband and children all have their own and use them daily. In fact, they go with us overnight everywhere. Whether it be to a friend’s or grandparent’s house for a sleepover, on vacation, or to school residence. They have become an important staple in our lives for comfort, calming, and ensuring a better night’s sleep.
You may want to consider investing in a weighted blanket if you suffer the following: insomnia, anxiety, sensory processing disorders, stress, focus issues, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, chronic pain, panic disorders, OCD, PTSD, ADHD and Autism. If you curl into a ball when watching tv, enjoy small spaces, love a strong hug, stick body parts between your bed and the wall, enjoy your pants tight, or like me love the weight of multiple blankets even in the summer, you too may enjoy the benefits of a weighted blanket. So basically, pretty much anyone.
For my son who struggles with sensory processing, his weighted blanket has allowed him the benefits of deep touch pressure without human contact. Human contact can cause him anxiety and an unfavorable feeling of pain. For my daughter’s wondering thoughts that keep her up all night, it has added some calmness and helps her relax quicker to fall asleep. For my husband, it is all about controlling his fidgety hands and feet as he lays to sleep. Everyone’s blanket has a different purpose and they have not disappointed.
The use of any kind of blanket is known to provide us with some comfort. As a child I had my blankie named, ‘Bears’ that I’d caress and sniff, all while sucking my thumb to fall asleep. Weighted blankets provide the added benefits of deep touch pressure therapy, known to relieve anxiety and increase our levels of the ‘happiness’ chemical, oxytocin. Oxytocin is a hormone linked to human bonding, recognized as the ‘cuddle’ or ‘love’ hormone which boosts an individual’s sense of wellbeing.
I purchased my children’s weighted blankets through Hippo Hug– I love this Canadian Company, based in Calgary Alberta. Hippo Hug’s goal is to create human solutions for human struggles. Their customized blankets are made for the individual and their lifestyle. I found their customer service to be remarkable. If you prefer to talk to someone you can easily contact them direct and they will guide you through the ordering process. Choosing the proper size and weight of the blanket is extremely important, especially for children. My favourite thing about Hippo Hug is that they have an array of prints and fabric types to choose from. For my daughter I was able to select an extremely plush, cozy fabric on one side and a cool to touch cotton on the other side. Depending on her mood and need she can choose the side she puts against her body. Hippo Hug also provides a variety of in stock, already made blankets you can choose from. If you go this route shipping is extremely quick.
Affiliate Disclaimer: My blog receives a commission if you use my links to purchase a product – Thank you for the support! Although I receive a small commission if you buy products through my links, these reviews are sincere and have truly made a difference in our home. I only suggest products that my family has used or recommends.
My husband ordered his blanket through Amazon – This blanket weight and size was a great choice for him and it has definitely helped calm his restless fidgeting. However, it came with a fleece cover which he hated because it was too warm, so we quickly replaced it with a cotton one.
If you are in BC like me and have access BC Autism Funding, you can utilize it for a weighted blanket. I found this extremely helpful as they can be pricy. I believe for children it is best to order custom. With a custom blanket you can ensure the proper size and weight. Weighted blankets should fit the body, not the bed. Plus, for safety purposes you want to make sure you do not get one too heavy. Generally, the weight of a weighted blanket should be 5-15% of our body weight. Therefore, you do not want to be using an adult blanket on a four-year-old.
If you are debating about the purchase of a weighted blanket, I highly recommend it. They have made a positive improvement in our lives. Anything that can improve the quality of our lives is an investment worth trying.