6 Mental Health Benefits Of Using Weighted Blankets

A weighted blanket is an underrated therapeutic tool for mental health problems (Image via Pexels/ Isabella Taylor)
A weighted blanket is an underrated therapeutic tool for mental health problems (Image via Pexels/ Isabella Taylor)

Mental health treatments use a variety of therapeutic approaches, techniques, medications, and tools. One such tool that has recently found acclaim for its mental health benefits is the weighted blanket.

A weighted blanket is a blanket that is designed to apply gentle pressure to our bodies while we sleep or are curled up snugly while resting. These blankets weigh anywhere from five to thirty pounds with materials like plastic pellets, glass beads, and ceramic beads that give them the extra weight.


The use of weighted blankets is based on the principles of deep pressure stimulation. This pressure stimulation comes from being held, hugged, swaddled, and stroked. The applied pressure causes our body to switch from its sympathetic nervous system to its parasympathetic nervous system.

The sympathetic nervous system is in charge of putting our bodies into fight or flight mode to cope in certain situations. Problems arise when we are in this mode for too long, resulting in stress, irritability, anxiety, and fatigue. Those suffering from mental health disorders such as autism spectrum disorder are frequently forced to operate in this mode.

On the other hand, the parasympathetic nervous system allows us to relax and brings about calmness in our minds and bodies. It aids in the slowing of your heart rate, the production of endorphins, and the relaxation of your muscles.

Weighted blankets enable us to reap the benefits of deep pressure stimulation without the assistance of another person or pet.

Mental Health Benefits of Using Weighted Blankets: Chronic Pain Reduction and 5 others

Weighted blankets have been shown to have numerous benefits for various types of people since their popularity. Many of the weighted blanket's benefits revolve around improving our ability to cope with various mental health issues.


1) Reduces anxiety

The main advantage of using a weighted blanket is that it reduces our anxiety levels. Everyone experiences anxiety in some form during certain times. The issue arises when anxiety is uncontrollably present and occurs frequently.

Using a weighted blanket, according to studies, can help reduce anxiety levels because it activates our parasympathetic nervous system, which reduces symptoms of anxiety such as excessive sweating, digestive problems, and an elevated heart rate.


2) Improves Sleep

Poor sleep habits have a negative impact on our mental health, so it is critical to get an adequate amount of sleep on a regular basis. According to a study, weighted blankets are excellent tools that can help us get the necessary amount of sleep because they help us stay asleep longer, have fewer disruptions while sleeping, and fall asleep faster. The weight of the blanket reduces our nighttime movement, resulting in better quality sleep and relief from restless leg syndrome for those who use it.


3) Facilitates positive hormonal balance

Weighted blankets are capable of influencing the type of hormones that our body produces. Deep pressure stimulation provided by the weighted blanket increases the production of serotonin in the body, which has many uses like regulating mood and helping communication between the brain and the body.

Additionally, using a weighted blanket raises our bodies' oxytocin levels, which makes us feel secure and at ease. A weighted balance is used to increase melatonin, which aids in sleep regulation while lowering cortisol levels, which affect how much stress we experience.

4) Chronic pain reduction

Using weighted blankets along with other pain relief techniques has been shown to be effective in reducing a variety of pain conditions. Research on the topic shows that deep pressure stimulation helps us release tense muscles and joints, which in turn helps us relax and stay calm.

When we use it to help us cope with chronic pain, the weight of the blanket sends signals to our brain that it is time to relax.


5) Helps manage symptoms of Autism spectrum disorder

Weighted blankets help individuals who are on the autism spectrum process various stimuli that they encounter, which they often struggle with. These individuals struggle with stimuli like movement, sounds, and light, which cause several personal problems.


Weighted blankets help these individuals deal with high levels of anxiety that they experience as a result of sensory overload. These individuals frequently struggle with insomnia and use weighted blankets to speed up the process of falling asleep and improve the quality of their sleep.

6) Helps manage symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

People with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) experience a number of detrimental mental health symptoms. Weighted blankets, according to studies, provide these individuals with several positive mental health outcomes, including better quality sleep patterns, improved well-being, increased relaxation, and lower anxiety.


Weighted blankets are not some panacea that will cure you of all your mental health ailments, but they have been shown through research to be highly effective for many mental health issues that are commonly faced by people of different ages.

Steve George Verghese is a trained psychologist with an MSc in Counseling Psychology from the Indian Institute of Psychology and Research.

Poll : Will you buy a weighted blanket?



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Edited by Babylona Bora
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