By Oktay Ozadam
It's essential to take into account all sorts of things when picking out a weighted blanket, but what are some of the facts you didn't know about weighted cooling blankets?
Some of them are trivia; some of them are merely informative; the point of this article is to help you pick out the best blanket for you.
Are weighted blankets hotter than regular blankets? How heavy exactly should a weighted blanket be? Always wanted to know these things but never took the time to ask? Well, now you don't need to. We've answered all the common questions related to cooling weighted blankets in one nifty article for you to enjoy.
1. What's the Difference Between Weighted Blankets and Cooling Weighted Blankets?
While they're basically the same thing, weighted blankets focus on deep pressure therapy, and the manufacturer cares more about providing warmth and heaviness than maintaining an even body temperature while you sleep.
A weighted cooling blanket will be made of a softer, generally more breathable fabric and might not be as heavy. It might also rely on a ventilator or a hydro-heating system to provide the necessary coolness.
2. A Weighted Blanket Is A Form of Therapy
It relies on deep pressure therapy. This is a relatively new psychological concept that embraces the healing and restorative powers of pressure on the body to calm the nerves.
This is why weighted blankets are particularly recommended in people with autism, anxiety, or ADHD.
The weight of the blanket creates the impression of being held. This makes you feel protected and makes your body release serotonin, which makes you happy and more relaxed, making it easier to fall into a deep sleep.
3. How Heavy Should A Weighted Blanket Be?
A lot of people, when buying their first weighted blanket, are scared of getting one that's too heavy and crushing. Though there is no set-in-stone rule as to the ideal weight, it's generally accepted that a weighted blanket should be no more and no less than 10% of your total body weight.
So, if you weight around 200 lbs, a good weighted blanket would weigh in at 20 pounds. Heavy, we know!
4. The First Weighted Blanket Was Invented In 1998
Though it seems like a new and innovative concept, the truth is weighted blankets have been around for 22 years already. The first of its' kind, "The Magic Weighted Blanket," was invented by a man from California called Keith Zivalich.
He came up with the idea when his daughter put a stuffed beanie toy on his shoulder to keep him warm while driving. This led to him coming up with the original 'beanie' weighted blanket.
5. Are Weighted Blankets Hotter Than Regular Blankets?
This depends on a bunch of factors, such as the fabric, the number of layers, and the insulation of your weighted blanket. There are, indeed, some that are hotter than typical blankets. Alternatively, one can purchase cooling weighted blankets to keep them cool, but not freezing, during the night.
6. You Should Not Use Them for Kids and Especially Not Infants
This doubles as both an interesting fact and a word of caution. Due to their heavyweight, these blankets can be difficult for kids to shift and can be dangerous. We would not recommend that you purchase a weighted blanket for your child unless it's specifically designed for the use of children.
And never ever use it on a toddler or infant, for apparent reasons.
7. Are Weighted Blankets Dangerous?
A lot of people ask this. They feel that just because newer models of these blankets tend toward the electric, that it's automatically the same as sleeping with your toaster. It's not. The truth is, there are relatively few dangers to sleeping with a heated blanket of any kind.
Although again, not for kids. And we would avoid highly flammable fabrics, such as flannel and polyester. Other than that, no, weighted blankets and cooling weighted blankets alike are designed with your comfort and safety in mind, so there's no need to worry.
8. Weighted Blankets Encourage Dreaming
Weighted blankets, thanks to the added pressure, are supposed to ease your body into REM sleep, also known as deep sleep. This is usually the point after you've finished tossing and turning and can't be easily woken by movements or noises anymore. For some people, this point comes fairly soon in their sleep, while others take hours to get to it.
In any case, weighted blankets encourage it and help you get to REM faster, thus also encouraging us to dream. This, in turn, is very good for our psyche. It's healthy to dream regularly because dreams are a mental release of stress, anger, and other unresolved issues you've encountered during your day.
Dreaming can keep depression and anxiety at bay and make you feel more well-rested in the morning.
9. What Exactly Is in A Weighted Blanket?
Lots of stuff, apparently. Traditionally, a weighted blanket is filled with tiny glass beads or pellets (alternatively, these can be made out of plastic or other, more eco-friendly materials). These pellets are sewn into the fabric to ensure an even distribution and an even pressure all over the body.
Although many weighted blankets today are made up of pellets, the manufacturing has diversified in the past twenty years. A weighted blanket, particularly a weighted cooling blanket, can also contain tubes that circulate air or even water.
So, how many of these facts about weighted blankets did you already know? How many of them surprised you, and how many helped answer some of your burning questions?
We hope we managed to clear some stuff up for you and that we've also gotten you interested in the world of weighted blankets.