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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Weighted Blanket Explained

Never thought to tell you what the weighted blanket was and why we are using one. Here we go. . .

Bubba has sensory issues that go along with his Autism. He has a low sense of himself - does that make sense? He falls alot, bumps into things; it's like he doesn't know where his body is in space. (There is a word for it and I can't remember it. It's multi syllabic and it's the end of the day.) If you bump or push Bubba he loves it. It takes much more impact to affect him than it would a typical kid.

So, when Bubs starts to go haywire or get a bit spastic, he will run and slam into the wall or jump up and land hard on the floor. He will OFTEN times come up and push against my back or side. He is seeking input/pressure.

The weighted blanket provides that and has a calming affect.

I made the blanket like a grid of pockets. I am making bean bags (using washable pellets) and will spread the weight through the pockets. There is a formula for how much weight to use and since my blanket is made this way I can add weight as Bubba grows, etc.

This is how they word all this on the Weighted Magic Blanket website:

Weighted blankets, like The Magic Blanket™ , have shown to generate proprioceptive (that's the big word!) input on our bodies. For many people, this input causes the brain to release neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, among others. These neurotransmitters released by the brain have naturally calming effects, which have proven to be beneficial for people experiencing sensory integration disorder, anxiety, stress, Asperger's Syndrome, ADHD, and Rett Syndrome.

A couple other sites with like stories are Craft Nectar and Craft Apple.
Thanks for your interest!

JoAnn - I hope this gives you enough info. If you want specifics (measurements, etc.) of what I made, just email me. It is EASY to sew.

3 comments:

Nick, Annie, Aiden, Sophie and Clip said...

Nick and I LOVE sleeping with our heavy down blanket during the winter. It is so calming and soothing to us, and I have to admit that a weighted blanket sounds so wonderful to me!
Our OT gave Aiden a weighted vest for a time for the same thing, but he didn't need it long.
Praise be to God, Aiden has or is growing out of many of the SPD issues we were facing last year (not all, but a lot!)
But I still wish I would take the time to make a weighted blanket for our family. I think it would be helpful for Aiden...and also helpful to ME too when *I* need a time out!!! ;)
~annie

micahandjeremiah said...

I think I need one of those. In all seriousness, I have always struggled with bad anxiety. Panic attacks are a part of life for me. Funny, but getting under lots of heavy blankets is calming to my body. I never knew that was normal for some people. It drives Scott crazy...I will turn down the a/c or heat to make the house cold just so I can be under tons of blankets. It really is something about the weight of them that helps me sleep. Now if only I could sew. By the way, this is Shannon Kennedy signed in under Scott's blog address that he never uses.

Anonymous said...

Our son loves his weighted blanket. It was custom made by DreamCatcher weighted blankets at www.weightedblanket .net The company is very concerned that the blanket is just the right fit for each individual because it was started by parents of a child on the spectrum. Hope it helps