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The weighted blanket: a magic formula for getting to sleep?

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When you are in the grip of insomnia or anxiety, the weighted blanket is a concrete solution to find sleep more easily. Also suitable for children with specific needs, this heavy duvet helps to fall asleep. Decryption.

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What is a weighted blanket?

“The quilts are weighted down with thousands of glass microspheres. These are compartmentalized in squares of approximately 10 cm x 10 cm, so that the weight of the blanket on the body is perfectly distributed “, explains Nicolas Marquis, before specifying that” the pressure exerted on the body allows the latter to calm down and relax. These blankets are registered as a real therapeutic tool in certain countries of the European Union. “A product that the French entrepreneur is marketing today after a burnout and nearly three years on anxiolytics and antidepressants, having led him to believe that if the drugs relieve, they do not cure. This is how he turned to a more natural solution: heavy duvets.

How does a heavy duvet work?

With the weight, the blanket then creates pressure-to-touch stimulation or Deep Touch Pressure (DTP) stimulation. Kelly Champinot, the sleep consultant, enlightens us: “DTP indeed promotes the secretion of hormones such as serotonin (a hormone which regulates mood in particular) or oxytocin (hormone promoting relaxation and appeasement), which play a key role in regulating sleep. Result? This hormonal cocktail promotes the secretion of melatonin (sleep hormone) and therefore makes it easier to fall asleep. “

According to a study published by the academic publishing house Taylor & Francis, of 32 adults subjected to the experiment, 63% of them reported less anxiety following the use of a weighted blanket.

Who is this device for?

Juliette Moudoulaud, sleep coach for adults and children, has already prescribed the weighted duvet to her patients. “For adults, it may be interesting to use it during a transitional period, when there are special events. It is then a one-off aid, which is not necessarily long-term. “Indeed, for our expert, using such a device every night at home can also mean that you will be unable to sleep without it. It’s best to try to sleep with as little help as possible, she says, to maximize the chances of restful sleep.

Side contraindications: the weighted blanket should not be used in pregnant women, in people with type 2 diabetes, or in subjects unable to easily remove the blanket.

From what age can we test the weighted blanket?

Weighted blankets are generally recommended from 3 years old. Sleep consultant Kelly Champinot specifies this, however: “I will not recommend her before 3 years and a minimum of 20 kilos, making sure that the child can remove the blanket on his own. Beforehand, it is essential to check that the little one is in good health and that his sleep hygiene is good, because let’s not forget that a child who is very agitated or having trouble falling asleep at night often means that he lacks sleep. Nicolas Marquis also specifies that for optimal use, it is recommended that the experiment be done under the close supervision of an adult. “For example, you can put your child to sleep covered with his weighted blanket to soothe him during bedtime and remove it once he is asleep. », He explains. The weighted blanket can therefore help treat sleep disorders in your kids from 3 years old, in particular by the fact that it simulates a hug, thanks to its very enveloping nature. Be careful to put it to good use.

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