Healthline’s article “Weighted Blankets: Do They Work” describes weighted blankets or weighted blankets as therapeutic blankets that can weigh between five to thirty pounds. The pressure from the extra weight simulates deep pressure stimulation, which relaxes the nervous system. It is said to help reduce anxiety, boost sleep performance, relieve pain, improve mood, promote blood circulation, and much more. My favorite weighted blanket is from a company called Gravity. Their website is accessible using this link.
To select a gravity blanket, it should be about five to ten percent of your body weight. If you think you can go heavier or weigh enough that ten percent of your body weight exceeds thirty-five pounds, make sure it never exceeds thirty-five pounds because it will negatively influence the body. The blanket should be big enough to cover your entire body and give you some space to move around. I am not an expert in the type of fabric or material of a weighted blanket you should use, but make sure it is comfortable for you and not unnecessarily hot. When you purchase the blanket, make sure it is not too heavy for you to kick it off. This is my one concern for muscular dystrophy so it would be okay to reduce the weight if it feels too strenuous to move.
I have been using a single twenty-pound gravity blanket for the last few nights. I find it incredibly comfortable, but I have not been able to sleep perfectly with the blanket. It takes approximately one to two weeks to adjust to the blanket, so I am in the middle of that process. I bought a fifteen-pound gravity blanket because I want to determine if the lighter blanket suits me better than the heavier ones. Following my previous advice, both blankets are suitable for me to move around, and the material makes me feel warm and comfortable. When adjusting to the device, use it to cover the whole body, cover the upper body solely, and then use it for the lower body. Find out what can make you sleep best and stick to that routine.
When I use the gravity blanket, I feel like a Christmas present wrapped under the Christmas tree. I think that I could be under this rug for the rest of my life because I find it comfortable. The rug traps heat from my body, so even If I go to the restroom, the temperature remains nice, warm, and snuggly. Another thing I experience is the release of my stress and anxiety when I use the blanket. I truly understand that I am safe, happy that I feel amazing, and can get a good night’s rest. Several studies have shown Gravity Blankets’ positive effects due to their ability to release hormones for relaxation and reduce activity in the nervous system.
It is necessary to state that weighted blankets do not work for everybody. If you are claustrophobic, have severe sleep apnea, or asthma, you should not try this blanket. You may not even have any of these problems and will not be able to go to sleep even after a few weeks, which would suggest that you should stop using the blanket. For muscular dystrophy, ensure that it is not heavy for you as it may lead to negative consequences denying the positives stemming from using the blanket. Other than that, I would recommend purchasing a Gravity Blanket or any other weighted blanket to see if it can improve your sleep. The benefits could be exponential in enhancing your physical, mental, and emotional state.