Weighted Blankets?

Please share your experiences, successes, and failures in using non-drug therapies for RLS/WED (methods of relief that don't involve swallowing or injecting anything), including compression, heat, light, stretches, acupuncture, etc. Also under this heading, medical interventions that don't involve the administration of a medicine to the body (eg. varicose-vein operations, deep-brain stimulation). [This forum contains Topics started prior to 2009 that deal with Non-prescription Medicines, Supplements, & Diet.]
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Kimberly
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Weighted Blankets?

Postby Kimberly » Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:29 am

I was wondering if anyone had purchased and tried using a 'weighted' blanket at night and if they've had any success with it?

It occurred to me that when I go to the dentist, which, believe it or not, relaxes me and causes my movement to start and so I discovered I would get relief by having them put that heavy Xray cape over my legs. I hadn't thought about it in a while but for some reason it occurred to me today that there might be something similar I can use at night and sure enough, I googled and found weighted blankets that, according to the website, are even approved by Medicaid for certain disorders when prescribed by a doctor. The site I found was called www.heavyblanket.com or Dream Catchers. It was interesting to read how and why this is suppose to work for many conditions, including RLS. Problem is, they are very expensive and I'd like to know if anyone has had any success using it for RLS.

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Postby badnights » Sat Jan 08, 2011 7:58 pm

Wow, they actually make such things? I thought the same thing when I was at the dentist a couple of years ago.

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Postby ViewsAskew » Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:04 pm

I bet it would work if you're one of those people who like that feeling. Not sure, but the tight stockings (can't think of the name) might be less expensive to try - it's probably a similar feeling.
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SquirmingSusan
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Postby SquirmingSusan » Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:52 pm

My daughter has one of those blankets. They are marketed to people with autism spectrum disorders because they are calming. I thought about trying to sleep under it when I was having a lot of problems with PLMs. I also had some ankle weights that I tried once or twice. The blanket does feel good to me and I like the weight on my legs. I might have to try that sometime when the RLS isn't quite under control with meds.
Susan

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Kimberly
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Postby Kimberly » Sat Jan 15, 2011 9:16 am

I am going to try and make one out of a sheet and the beads from a couple of bean bag chairs. I am very interested to see if it will help or make things worse for me. I'll report back:)

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SquirmingSusan
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Postby SquirmingSusan » Mon Jan 17, 2011 4:24 am

Bean bag beans don't seem like they would be heavy enough. My daughter's blanket has either sand or fine gravel in it. We were thinking that a person could make a blanket with rice in it, and then you could heat it up in the microwave and it could be a warm, weighted blanket. That might feel even better.
Susan

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Postby Polar Bear » Mon Jan 17, 2011 12:07 pm

Rice sounds a possibility.... what about dried peas, tho they may be a little too big.
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Postby SquirmingSusan » Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:04 pm

Peas would probably work too. I've seen those microwaveable hot packs made with all kinds of different things - corn, dried beans, rice, wheat.
Susan

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Kimberly
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Thanks!

Postby Kimberly » Tue Feb 01, 2011 5:33 am

Thank you for all of the suggestions! I am still doing a little research on the best way to construct the blanket and the best type of filling to use. Some food items, such as rice, can be used if the blanket is constructed so that the item can be removed prior to washing.

Something I continue to find reported on the internet is that the weight of the blanket can also have an effect on Serotonin levels. This is of particular interest to me since all anti-depressants exacerbate my movement. However, I don't know how the weight will affect chronic pain from Fibromyalgia.

If you've read my posts, you may know that at the present time I am having no success with meds for RLS/PLMW and the tiny amount of anti-depressant I do take is making things worse. Wouldn't it be a hoot if, after 30 years, a flipping weighted blanket did the trick! LOL

I'll report back if I have any success.

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Postby DrWass2 » Tue Apr 05, 2011 12:49 am

If you think the weight would help then you are probably one of those that the compression stockings would help. Give it a try.

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Re: Weighted Blankets?

Postby debbluebird » Sat Apr 09, 2016 10:14 pm

I realize this posting thread is several years old. But my daughter just sent me this link yesterday. The Benefits of Mosaic Weighted Blankets® for Anxiety, Stress, and Insomnia. In their ad, it does list RLS/PLM. She has two children, one with ADHD and the other with Slight Autism. She asked me if I had heard if anyone who had tried this.

jul2873
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Re: Weighted Blankets?

Postby jul2873 » Sun Apr 10, 2016 1:58 am

I'd just be careful with rice, as often when I buy large quantities of rice, bugs germinate in it. Pretty soon they are flying around my pantry. Now I buy very small quantities and keep it in my refrigerator. I certainly wouldn't put rice in a blanket and then heat it up.

I will be interested to hear if this heavy blanket helps!

debbluebird
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Re: Weighted Blankets?

Postby debbluebird » Mon Apr 11, 2016 12:19 am

Thanks, but we don't have any plans to make one with rice or beans. I was more interested in the manufactured blanket.

67java89
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Re: Weighted Blankets?

Postby 67java89 » Sat Aug 20, 2016 5:11 pm

I'm interested in some kind of torso wrap, similar to those Hug vests for autism sufferers, but I don't have $600 to spend on one. I googled "Thundershirts" for people, but they don't make them. The first several pages of search results, however, were people asking if they make these and how they can get one. Some manufacturer needs to get on this, and now!!! In the meantime I'll deconstruct a thundershirt for a dog and see if I can make one for myself.
Sleep is a basic need.

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Re: Weighted Blankets?

Postby Polar Bear » Sat Aug 20, 2016 5:42 pm

I applaud your determination and initiative - I'll wait your efforts with interest - good luck :)
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