Deep Pressure Therapy: The Science Behind Weighted Blankets

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Learn how deep pressure therapy can help ease signs of sleep problems and improve sleep with these helpful FAQs.

RELATED: Do Weighted Blankets Work For Stress And Sleeplessness?

In this article:

  1. What Is Deep Pressure Therapy?
  2. Why Do You Need to Have a Weighted Blanket?
  3. How Does Deep Pressure Therapy Work?
  4. What Are Other Benefits of a Weighted Blanket?
  5. Who Are Best Suited to Use Weighted Blankets?
  6. When Is the Best Time to Use Weighted Blankets?
  7. Where Can You Get Weighted Blankets?

What You Should Know About Deep Pressure Therapy

What Is Deep Pressure Therapy?

Also known as deep pressure stimulation or deep pressure touch, deep pressure therapy is the application of light to moderate physical pressure on a person’s body to stimulate positive effects. It is becoming increasingly popular today because of the many health benefits it can provide, like promoting quality sleep,.

One method of practicing this therapy is through the use of weighted blankets that can cover a person’s whole body for full-body pressure-stimulating therapy.

Why Do You Need to Have a Weighted Blanket?

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The primary reason you need to get a weighted blanket is so you can fully maximize the benefits of deep pressure therapy right at home, which is the science behind the blanket. Because the blanket is capable of fully covering one’s body, a person can feel evenly-distributed weight or pressure on the body, similar to having a massage or the cozy feeling of a warm hug.

The therapy can increase the levels of serotonin, a chemical in the body that aids in the regulation of mood and social behavior, sleep, and memory, in your body. When your body releases more serotonin, it can make you feel calmer when you go to bed, helping you sleep faster and better.

Aside from the calming effect of the blanket, it also enhances your body’s melatonin, a chemical that tells the body when to sleep. Melatonin production and release can be disrupted by factors that undermine sleep, like poor sleep hygiene, making it difficult for you to get the most out of your nightly sleep.

Serotonin is also the building blocks of the body to produce melatonin, so enhancing serotonin can boost melatonin as well. This aids your body in achieving a regular sleep schedule.

Additionally, the extra weight of the blanket also helps you experience a restful sleep as it prevents you from tossing or turning around when asleep.

How Does Deep Pressure Therapy Work?

The therapy works by allowing your body to switch from sympathetic nervous system or SNS mode to parasympathetic nervous system or PNS mode.

The SNS’s main function is to activate the fight or flight reaction of the body, a natural psychological response to a threat, harmful event, or an attack that prepares your body for survival (either by fighting back, or fleeing to safety). The PNS is the opposite function of the SNS, as it helps slow down the heart rate and relaxes the muscles, calming your body.

When your body is perennially on SNS mode, you’re often stressed out, irritable, tired, and anxious, making you unable to reap the benefits of deep and restful sleep.

Deep pressure therapy promotes the function of PNS more, giving you a sense of calmness and relaxation helpful for quality sleep.

RELATED: How Can Weighted Blankets Help Your Anxiety? 9 Comforting Features

What Are Other Benefits of a Weighted Blanket?

Aside from the health benefits mentioned earlier, weighted blankets offer many other advantages to your health.

  • Helps the Elderly to Sleep Better

Aging affects how we sleep, as it can increase the risk of having insomnia, and the elderly usually suffer from changes in their sleep-wake cycle. Weighted blankets can help prevent this problem and promote a regular sleep schedule, providing the elderly restful sleep every day (and relief from chronic aches and pains, too).

  • Relieves Symptoms of Travel Anxiety

Traveling is fun and exciting, but some people experience an increase in their anxiety levels when traveling, like when the hustle and bustle of train stations and airports are overwhelming. The soothing weight of the blanket can help calm their senses, which aids in reducing levels of travel anxiety.

  • Promotes Focus

Weighted blankets do not have a direct effect on people’s strength of focus, but because the blanket promotes better sleep, it helps improve focus. Having good sleep aids people in thinking clearly, making sound decisions, and retaining information.

  • Enhances Mood

Once your brain stops producing enough serotonin, it can affect your emotional health, impacting your mood. However, through the use of weighted blankets, the release of happy hormones can help you stay positive and cheerful.

Who Are Best Suited to Use Weighted Blankets?

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People with sleep problems, anxiety disorders, and nervous system-related disorders should get weighted blankets to help them sleep better or, at least, relax more when they cover their body with the blanket. The blanket can help ease their symptoms and can help set regular sleep schedules, especially when they use the blanket often.

Other people who don’t have these conditions can still take advantage of the blanket’s benefits. Anyone, in general, who wants to prioritize quality sleep and relaxation, can reap the benefits of a weighted blanket.

When Is the Best Time to Use Weighted Blankets?

You can always use the blanket whenever you go to bed, but you can also opt to just drape them over your lap or shoulders whenever you need to decompress a little. Reading a book and sipping a cup of tea while covered in the blanket is a great way to take a moment for yourself to enjoy some inner peace.

Lying in bed and meditating with the blanket on is also another great way to make use of your weighted blanket. Just make sure you use the blanket in safe conditions and you’re fitted with the appropriate size and weight.

Where Can You Get Weighted Blankets?

Weighted blankets are readily available online. Sonno Zona offers care-friendly, extra-soft, and wellness-enhanced weighted blankets.

We have various types of blankets you can choose from, with different sizes, from small to large. We aim to promote self-care through restful sleep and great relaxation.

 

Now that you have a better understanding of how deep pressure therapy can help you with better sleep and can offer other health benefits, it’s time you grab your own weighted blanket to try it out for yourself.

What other health benefits did you experience with weighted blankets? Share them in the comments section below!

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