Does the quality of your sleep depend on your blanket?
A weighted blanket of approximately 12% body weight used at bedtime prompted the release of higher concentrations of melatonin, as measured in the saliva, compared with a lighter blanket of only about 2.4% of body weight in a new study.
This suggests that weighted blankets may help promote sleep in patients suffering from insomnia.
The study was published online October 3 in the Journal of Sleep Research.
On average, salivary melatonin concentrations rose by about 5.8 pg/mL between 10 PM and 11 PM (P < .001), but the average increase in salivary melatonin concentrations was greater under weighted blanket conditions at 6.6 pg/mL compared with 5.0 pg/mL during the lighter blanket session (P = .011).
Weighted blankets are commercially available at least in some countries in Scandinavia and Germany, as examples, and in general, they are sold for therapeutic purposes.
There are studies that concludes that they are an effective and safe intervention for insomnia in patients with major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and led to improvements in daytime symptoms and levels of activity.