When I first learned about weighted blankets I was quite skeptical about the health benefits that were associated with this kind of product. After taking a quick look online, I struggled to find a resource online that outlined the scientific studies/research that has been performed on weighted blankets.
So with that being said, I went ahead and compiled a list of the research that has been performed on weighted blankets for you to analyze in your own time.
Updated List of Research on Weighted Blankets
- Ackerley, R., Badre, G. and Olausson, H., 2015. Positive Effects of a Weighted Blanket on Insomnia. Journal of Sleep Medicine & Disorders, 2(3), pp.1-7.
This study published in 2015 showed that participants who used a weighted blanket slept for longer and also exhibited a decrease in bodily movements during this time. In addition to this, participants said they enjoyed sleeping with the blanket as they experienced a better night’s sleep and woke up feeling more refreshed in the morning.
These findings suggest that weighted blankets may be useful in the treatment of patients who suffer from insomnia.
- Mullen, B., Champagne, T., Krishnamurty, S., Dickson, D. and Gao, R.X., 2008. Exploring the safety and therapeutic effects of deep pressure stimulation using a weighted blanket. Occupational Therapy in Mental Health, 24(1), pp.65-89.
This study involving 32 adults looked at the safety and effectiveness of a 30 lb weighted blanket. Here are some of the main findings of the study:
- 33% of participants had a decrease in electrodermal activity (EDA)
- 63% of participants reported having less anxiety
- 78% of participants preferred using the blanket as a calming modality
The results of this study indicate that a 30 lb weighted blanket has a calming effect on some adults who use it.
- Gringras, P., Green, D., Wright, B., Rush, C., Sparrowhawk, M., Pratt, K., Allgar, V., Hooke, N., Moore, D., Zaiwalla, Z. and Wiggs, L., 2014. Weighted blankets and sleep in autistic children—a randomized controlled trial. Pediatrics, pp.peds-2013.
This study published in 2014 was specifically targeted towards children who have autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The study ran for a total of 2-weeks and looked at the total sleep time (TST) exhibited by these children, along with a variety of other factors.
At the end of the study, it was clear that the weighted blanket did not help children with ASD sleep longer, fall asleep faster, or wake up less during the night. In saying that though, both the children and their parents favored the use of the weighted blanket. Furthermore, the blanket was also well-tolerated by the children during the study.
- Parker, E. and Koscinski, C., 2016. The Weighted Blanket Guide: Everything You Need to Know about Weighted Blankets and Deep Pressure for Autism, Chronic Pain, and Other Conditions. Jessica Kingsley Publishers.