How do you use your weighted blanket?
Weighted blankets are often suggested as a therapeutic treatment for many medical conditions. Although most often associated as a treatment for children with Autism, weighted blankets can be used to treat both children and adults with a broad spectrum of conditions. They have even been recommended for hyper-active dogs! If you think a weighted blanket may be helpful for you or your child, be sure to talk to your healthcare provider to learn more about the benefits and possible risks.
What is a weighted blanket?
A weighted blanket is a blanket that has been specially designed to distribute weight evenly over the person using it. The blankets can weigh as little as 5 pounds for a child-size blanket, and can range up to 40 pounds for an adult-size blanket. Blankets can be made from a variety of different fabrics, depending on the look and texture you prefer. Although several filling materials are available, polypropylene pellets are recommended the most because they are hypoallergenic, non-toxic, and have a consistent size and smooth shape which creates an even texture that is comfortable to snuggle up with.
How do weighted blankets work?
Weighted blankets apply pressure to the afflicted person, known as “deep touch pressure.” This pressure has a calming effect, almost like a hug. This soothes and relaxes the users, helping them to ignore distracting stimuli which may normally keep them awake.
Who can weighted blankets help?
I’ve done some research and put together a list of conditions for which weighted blankets are recommended:
- Sensory Processing Disorder
- Asperger’s Syndrome
- Sleep Walking
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
- Anxiety Disorders
- Restless Leg Syndrome
Many of our customers order Quality Plastic Pellets to make their own weighted blankets. Have you used a weighted blanket? Tell us how they worked for you in the comments below!
How to Make Your Own Weighted Blanket:
Weighted blankets may take some time to make, but they are definitely worth it! Since purchasing a weighted blanket can be expensive, you can save quite a bit of money making your own and you have the added benefit of customizing it. Like many of our crafts, this is a fun family project, since you have to go shopping for the fabric, weigh out the pellets, do some sewing, and assemble it all. Set aside some time together over a weekend to do this fun activity. Here’s how to get started.
Weighted blanket materials:
- 1 pound of white or clear smooth Quality Plastic Pellets per 10 pounds of weight for the user, plus one extra pound
- Fabric of your choice
- 2.5 yds. of fabric for the top of the blanket
- 2.5 yds. of fabric for the bottom of the blanket
- Measuring Tape
- A small scale
- Sewing machine
Assembling your Weighted Blanket:
- Determine the size. If your blanket is going to be portable, you will want to make it smaller than the one that goes on your bed. The materials above will make a blanket to fit a twin bed (40” x 76”). If you’re using a heftier fabric, you may wish to weigh it before beginning and add this weight into the total of your blanket.
- After you have your blanket size ready, place the fabrics right sides together.
- Measure two inches in on two of the long sides and one of the short sides, leaving one side open for adding your pellets.
- Sew on the lines, then turn the fabric inside out. Iron the edges so they are nice and crisp!
- Prepare for adding the plastic pellets.
- Measure out a grid for the remaining area of the blanket. Since we are taking off 4” from each side for an edge, we will have a weighted area of 36” x 72”.
- Divide the area into even squares, making as neat a grid as you can. If making 6” by 6” square, we will have a perfect six squares across and twelve squares up!
out all of the pellets into the right sized portions. To do that, just
follow this handy formula:
Blanket weight in ounces/number of squares you have = number of ounces per square. Remember that 16 US oz. = 1 lb. You can have someone help you measure them out for you as you go!
- Sew along the vertical lines to make channels six inches apart from each other. This is where you are going to pour the pellets.
- Once all of the channels are ready, pour the proper amount of fill for each square into each of the six channels. Shake them a little so they settle to the bottom.
- Measure six inches from the bottom seam and sew a straight line across the fabric, sealing up that line of weighted squares.
- Repeat steps seven and eight until you have finished the last row of squares at the top.
- Fold in the two inches of fabric that are left over, then stitch that shut. This will seal up the top row of weighted squares, and you now have a personal, homemade blanket!