Trying A Weighted Blanket For Anxiety Disorder
Nearly 40 million people in the US experience an anxiety disorder in any given year. More than 40 million Americans also suffer from chronic, long-term sleep disorders. Those numbers aren’t a coincidence. Anxiety and sleep are intimately connected: The less sleep you get, the more anxious you feel. The more anxious you feel, the less sleep you get. It’s a cycle many insomnia and anxiety sufferers find hard to break.
I’m always on the lookout for new tips and even products that will aid me in getting the rest I so desperately need. With that in mind, I finally gave in and purchased a weighted blanket, in hopes it would increase my chance of a sound sleep. Though skeptical at first, I’ve been pleasantly surprised in the ways it has helped me.
Deep Pressure Therapy (DPT)
Maybe you’ve heard of the concept of using a weighted blanket before. If you have, you may have especially heard about it with regards to helping those with autism. That’s because Dr. Temple Grandin, herself on the autism spectrum, discovered the benefits of applying deep pressure therapy(DTP) as a way to induce a calming effect.
Deep Pressure Therapy (DPT) is a tactile input in the form of pressure exerted or distributed equally across your body. It produces sensations in your body similar to those that generate from cuddling, hugging, stroking, holding, and squeezing. When your body receives deep pressure with specific therapy techniques, it releases calming substances throughout your body that help ease anxiety and depression. Widely used by professional therapists, deep pressure therapy is a go-to remedy when working to calm, control, and regulates your sensory system. A great number of scientific studies suggest that individuals undergoing sensory issues benefit from deep pressure therapy. They feel more connected to the environment and themselves, which makes them comfortable and relaxed.
It’s this concept of deep touch pressure that Grandin really helped to discover that is where weighted blankets come in to play. Unlike a regular blanket, a weighted blanket contains non-toxic glass beads, sewn into self-contained tiny compartments evenly incorporated throughout the blanket. These glass beads add enough weight to a blanket, which is usually around 10% over the user’s body weight.
That said, sleeping under a weighted blanket signals the brain to release certain chemicals like melatonin, serotonin, and dopamine. These chemicals help operate neurotransmitters, which further regulate sleep, mood, and sensory perception. In addition, these substances have comforting and sedative properties that provoke relaxation throughout your body and prevent insomnia.
Finding the right blanket
To find a suitable blanket, a person should choose one that is around 10% of their body weight. There are numerous online sellers (I got mine from Amazon) with a wide variety of styles. Finally, I decided to buy a YnM Cooling Weighted Blanket because of its good price and numerous good reviews on Amazon. As one of the best sellers on Amazon, YnM got 4.5 out of 5 with over 3000 reviews. The cooling blanket was made with 100% natural bamboo viscose that absorbs body heat and wicks away moisture, specially designed for people like me who get really hot or sweat a lot in their sleep.
At the beginning, I was still somewhat skeptical when acquiring a weighted blanket. That, coupled with double price tags than a regular blanket, made me wait until I found just the right deal . After using YnM Cooling Weighted Blanket for a couple months now, I really wish I had gotten one sooner.
I’ve tried to monitor my sleep since getting it, marking down when I awake in the middle of the night, as well as how I feel each morning. I did so before it arrived as well. Then I found that I have definitely slept longer periods through the night. I have also fallen asleep much faster, in fact, that may be one of the more remarkable aspects of my experience.
Another great aspect of the YnM Cooling Weighted Blanket is that it provides me the weight but without the added heat a large number of blankets would create. That is a common misconception to associate weighted blankets with ‘hot’. Whilst weighted blankets are, of course, heavier than regular blankets, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are automatically hotter, especially when you choose the “cooling” one because they are made with special fabrics, such as YnM Cooling Blanket made with 100% natural bamboo viscose. Temperature can have such a big impact with anxiety disorder, so being able to get this weight and pressure without additional heat has been very beneficial.
So for all those with anxiety disorder, a weighted blanket could be your ticket to a great night’s sleep. Sweet dreams!