Could a weighted blanket become an effective addition to your fibromyalgia treatment plan? We all know the importance of comfort while sleeping, but with fibromyalgia, this becomes even more essential due to the tendency of poor regeneration.
When chronic fatigue leaves you irritable or the pain becomes too intense, you may want to give yourself permission to cuddle up with a blanket. These blankets are now used to treat a wide variety of medical conditions and could make living with fibromyalgia a little easier.
What are Weighted Blankets?
Each of these blankets is simply a blanket stuffed with material that adds weight. Some of the most common fillings include glass pellets and plastic pellets or beads, but many DIY weighted blankets are made with everything from corn and small rocks to sand. When making a blanket for children, it’s common to use extra layers of cloth or other soft fillers.
These blankets should feel much like any other blanket in your home but with some added weight. You can find them in a variety of colors and patterns, and some are heavier than others. Lighter blankets are suitable for children, but adults often experiment with weights and materials until they find the perfect weight for their personal needs.
How Do Weighted Blankets Work?
Blankets with added weight stimulate the production of serotonin by touching pressure points along the body. Your body reacts to the blanket just as it would react to anything soothing to the body. Serotonin has a calming effect that encourages you to relax. This is why these blankets have long been used to soothe children with autism, sensory processing disorder, and many other physical and mental disorders.
Many adults are now using these blankets for fibromyalgia because it helps ease pain and anxiety. Some fibromyalgia patients have layered their blankets to receive the same benefits for many years. Now there is a more effective way to get that comfort.
For some people, the little bit of extra weight can feel like a form of protection. This can also be a good thing for fibromyalgia when nerve pain or anxiety levels are high.
When to Use Your Blanket
These blankets are often recommended at bedtime or naptime because they are so soothing and can help improve the quality of your sleep. As a fibromyalgia sufferer, you may put your blanket to even more use. Perhaps it will become your go-to therapy when you feel achy or the pain leaves you begging for fast relief. Cuddling up under a blanket with added weight can relax your body and mind, which in turn may help manage your pain and ease any anxiety that you experience.
You may even want to experiment with resting a weighted blanket over your lap while you work. It may turn out that a bit of weight on your legs helps calm your body so that you can work more productively.
Selecting a Weighted Blanket
Weighted blankets are easy to find today. You can order homemade versions on sites like Etsy or visit Amazon for a wide selection from leading manufacturers. Here are some features that you should consider:
- Size – Make sure that the blanket was intended for adults rather than children. Look at the measurements to ensure that you will have enough room to cover up comfortably.
- Color or Pattern – There are many blankets in neutral colors that will easily blend into any bedroom or living room.
- Material – Some of these blankets have removeable covers while others are covered in soft materials. Shop around to find something that is attractive to you.
- Filling & Weight – You might want to start off with a lighter weight and work your way up. Make sure that the blanket is washable because some DIY homemade blankets are weighted with sand and other materials that can’t safely go into the washing machine and dryer.
Note: The blanket that I have used for a few years now is not actually called a “weighted blanket” it just so happens to do the trick. In fact, I always wondered how people could sleep without a blanket just because it was warm. Most of us will need sufficient covering when living with fibromyalgia.