If you follow me on Facebook you will see that I posted pictures of my sons blanket after I finished constructing it. I was skeptical that it would work out quite so well but figured I had nothing much to lose. For a fraction of the costs of buying one online I was able to make my son a sensory aid in a theme he chose and now he absolutely loves it.
What are weighted blankets?
https://harkla.co/blogs/special-needs/weighted-blanket-benefits tells you all you need to know but to summarise –
‘ Increased Relaxation Due to Deep Touch Pressure. The underlying science on weighted blankets is called deep touch pressure (DTP). DTP is about gently applying pressure to the body to increase the release of serotonin. Serotonin is a chemical in the body that promotes relaxation. ‘
My son has sensory issues and sleep problems so I find that pressure is something that works with him. It helps him feel less anxious, sleeps better and can even alleviate pain he gets from his legs.
Did it work?
Night one with Zacks weighted blanket.
He fell asleep faster.
He was less restless to the point I thought he was dead.
He slept through without waking.
His bed covers were still in the same position this morning as though he had not moved.
He woke with a smile and was easy to wake up.
He seemed so much more rested and calm.
He actually said he slept great and felt great.
Weight blanket 100 points and a gold star.
Now we are on night three and he also has been using it during the day when relaxing. I have seen a huge increase on his stillness and improved mood. It helps with his less intense leg pain from other issues he has.
How to make it
I searched eBay for my materials. I bought 3kg of poly pellets (you need 10% of your child’s weight to make a blanket but this includes the weight of your fabric.
I bought a Harry Potter blanket which was 1m by 1.5m and bought fleece in the same size as the reverse. i could have just bought two blankets.
That is all I needed.
Harry Potter blankets online were around £120 but my supplies were £30, a lot cheaper if I had gone for plain blankets.
I also only used half the pellets so would have saved myself about £6-7 by buying half.