I bet you have found your way here because you are looking for more information on a weighted blanket for autism. Or perhaps you are looking for a weighted blanket for anxiety. Well, you are in good hands because we have brought you the Top 4 ways a weighted blanket can help you or your loved one.
A weighted blanket is just like any other blanket only it has little beads sewn into the inner fabric. This is most often done in ‘pockets’ throughout the entire blanket. The blankets come in different sizes, making this a perfect tool for children and adults alike.
The weighted blanket acts as a comforting tool to anyone with sensory issues, especially for autism and anxiety. The weight applies a deep pressure which helps reduce tension and can create a calming effect.
Let’s take a look at the Top 4 ways weighted blankets can help you or a loved one with autism or anxiety.
1. Sleep Better at Night
Broken sleep and insomnia are often common in people who suffer from anxiety or autism. The brain goes into overdrive and has a constant never ending the stream of thoughts running through your head to keep you awake and worrying. We have all experienced this at some points in our life, but this is the everyday reality for anxiety and autism sufferers.
Weighted blanket for anxiety help to calm a person while sleeping – and it’s completely safe. The blanket helps to counteract restlessness and promotes a deeper peace by using deep pressure touch stimulation.
Deep pressure touch stimulation helps to reduce tension and anxiety that may build while trying to fall asleep. The blanket acts like a big hug, and hugs make us feel better.
A couple of things to remember when using a weighted blanket for yourself or a loved one is to NEVER put the blanket on a person’s face or head, and NEVER swaddle someone so tight they have no ability to move.
Also, NEVER force someone to use the blanket. If the blanket is being used for someone with anxiety or autism (or any sensory issue), forcing them to use the blanket when they don’t wish to, may cause further anxiety.
2. Offer Comfort and Reassurance
As we mentioned earlier, weighted blankets are often said to be like a big hug. We all love a good hug to help calm and reassure us. But often, anyone who suffers from anxiety and autism doesn’t like to be touched. Physical contact may cause more stress.
A weighted blanket for autism and anxiety are perfect because they go beyond the ‘natural’ physical touch. The weight throughout the blanket targets deep pressure points in the body which calm and reassures the person. Natural physical contact may heighten the anxiety as it alerts the nervous system.
Weighted blankets can be used at any time to offer comfort and reassurance as they are portable and can be used at any time of the day or night.
3. Calm and Balance Moods
We all like to have a balance and calm mood, but this is easier said than done for people with Autism or anxiety.
A weighted blanket for anxiety can contribute to stopping anxiety that builds up and balances out the emotions of stress, fear, and worry.
This is all done through deep pressure touch. The weight of the weighted blanket targets deep pressure points throughout the body which relax the nervous system. It also encourages to the brain to produce higher serotonin levels. Serotonin levels have a significant influence on our mood (among other things).
The weight from the blankets can create a sense of ‘grounding’ to those who use them. It can be as simple as laying the blanket across your lap or snuggled up in it.
4. Help Prevent and Calm Anxiety Attacks
Anyone who suffers from anxiety will know it’s not fun at all to have an anxiety attack (also known as a panic attack). But a weighted blanket for anxiety can change all of that.
A weighted blanket can be used as a tool in preventing and helping anxiety attacks.
Most people will know the signs leading up to panic attacks. Having the weighted blanket as a reassurance tool help calm you or your loved one before they go into panic mode.
It is recommended that you try to act before you get to the panic stage. But this is not always possible. The blanket can also be used for calming during an anxiety attack. Simply having a ‘go to’ item of comfort can be hugely beneficial for anxiety sufferers.
Through deep pressure touch, your body is encouraged to relax. Which is ideal for anyone with anxiety or autism. During an attack, your body will tense up, and your muscles will become very tight. This is the natural response to fear – it’s the body way of preparing for ‘fight or flight’ mode.
The deep pressure touch is like a gentle massage telling your body to relax. Once you are using a weighted blanket, your body may send messages to your brain and nervous system telling them to calm down.
The Final Message
Although it can be overwhelming for those who suffer and their families, you can help lessen the stress for all of those involved by using a weighted blanket for autism and anxiety. Just remember to ease into using a weighted blanket as the slight weight change can shock/cause tension if not prepared for it. Try using the blanket throughout the day to adjust to it. Also be aware of any rips or breakages that may occur during extended use. Dispose of the blanket immediately or have it repaired. We hope you have gained some valuable knowledge and wish you the best in a stress-free future.
For more items that can help with autism and anxiety, check out our Best Weighted Vest for Autism & Compression Vests Reviews & Top 4 Weighted Vest Benefits.