When we sleep well, we rest and recharge our bodies in preparation for another day. Sadly, one survey found that 50 to 70 million American adults suffer from a sleep disorder. When we don’t sleep well for prolonged periods of time, we react badly to stressful situations and make ourselves vulnerable to such conditions as Type 2 Diabetes.
There are many practical solutions that can help improve our nights’ sleep. They include having a healthy diet and taking regular exercise. Many people these days are talking about the benefits of using a weighted blanket at bedtime. They can weigh between four and 30 pounds, being heavier than the average blanket. An even weight distribution is created using quilted pockets that contain such things as glass beads or poly-pellets. But what is their purpose, and how can they help us sleep better? Let’s find out now.
The Power Of Deep Touch Pressure (DTP)
When a person’s Sympathetic Nervous System is overactive and overstimulated, they will find themself in a ‘fight or flight’ mode. This will make them feel like they are buzzing on adrenaline, and they may be unable to sleep as a result. By way of contrast, when the Parasympathetic Nervous System is engaged, a person will feel calm and relaxed. Their ‘happy hormones’ will be released, including their endorphins. This state has been called the ‘rest and digest’ mode.
The change of state from the Sympathetic to Parasympathetic Nervous System can be achieved by wearing such things as compression clothing, weighted backpacks or pressure vests. People also practice such things as deep pressure touch or joint compressions for the same purpose. Weighted blankets are yet another solution. According to the specialists at https://www.weightedblanketguides.com/ people are increasingly searching online for blanket buying guides and reviews. They are eager to understand the reasons and research behind their claimed health benefits.
An Increased Ability To Relax
Weighted blankets are also called ‘stress blankets’ or ‘calming blankets’. They make people feel like they are being tightly hugged, and that’s where the true power lies. People feel enabled to relax when in bed. In turn their heart rate will reduce, their blood pressure levels will stabilise and their circulation will improve.
When a person’s overstimulated nervous system is calmed, their mind will also become calm. This is because the stress hormone (Cortisol) levels will be reduced.
DTP has been used for decades by therapists. According to the journal of Occupational Therapy in Mental Health, 78% of the people receiving treatment preferred the blankets to receiving medication.
A Happier You
When people suffer from depression, their dopamine and serotonin levels will be low. They are a person’s happy hormones, or ‘feel good’ neurotransmitters.
When someone is snuggling underneath a weighted blanket, the production of these hormones will be promoted. This fact has been confirmed in the Journal Of Medical And Biological Engineering.
Relief for Autism and ADHD
People who have ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) feel trapped inside the fight or flight mode, as their Sympathetic Nervous System stays on high alert. It’s massively hard to cope when a person’s mind is stuck in a loop of anxious thoughts. ADHD sufferers (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) also battle with sensory overloads. They find it hard to stay focused on one thing, and can appear random and impulsive.
DTP therapy has found to be soothing for both conditions. People with ADHD often find that twenty minutes under a weighted blanket can help them transition from being physically active to performing calmer tasks such as reading or going to bed.
Help For Sufferers Of PTSD And Restless Leg Syndrome
People who have been traumatised by an event or events may suffer with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, resulting in sleep loss, anxiety and nightmares. Once again, weighted blankets can improve feelings of safety and calm people down.
Folk who suffer with restless legs encounter nerves and muscles that want to keep moving, at the very time they want them to relax. The use of special blankets has been proved to help with this condition too, which is technically called Willis-Ekbom Disease.
A Variety Of Benefits
As we have seen, weighted blankets can calm peoples’ bodies, their nervous systems and their minds. The benefits can last for several hours after use, enabling people to face their daily lives as well as their nights. Research shows there may also be pay-offs for people with the menopause, Lyme Disease of Fibromyalgia.
Weighted blankets are truly a great practical tool for many people, with the added benefit of containing no drugs or adverse side effects.