Anyone who has struggled to get a good night of sleep has likely tried every known remedy to get a little extra shut-eye. If weighted blankets, a relatively new method of helping you relax into sleep, seem like the next logical step in your struggle for sleep, you might find yourself shocked by the price tag.
With most weighted blankets weighing in between $200-$400 each, the investment may not seem worth it, especially if you aren’t sure it will work.
The team at Hug Sleep gets it. Why should you have to pay so much for the comfort of a weighted blanket? Besides the cost, how can you be sure they’ll even work? Relax, we’ve got you covered. (Okay, sorry, no more puns).
Together we’ll discuss the science behind weighted blankets, why they’re so expensive, and alternatives that can work better, saving you time and supporting your healthy sleep habits more effectively.
Why Weighted Blankets?
It sounds a little strange that a blanket filled with beads, ball bearings, grains, or sand designed to help comfort you and support a state of total relaxation. Strange? Sure. Scientific? Absolutely.
The mechanics of how a weighted blanket works are grounded in research and science — specifically, a technique called deep touch pressure therapy.
Deep touch pressure therapy (DTPT), or deep touch pressure stimulation, uses applied pressure to the body to help calm the sympathetic nervous system and release hormones like serotonin and dopamine, which naturally help you relax.
How Does That Support Sleep?
Let’s face it: a lot of us simply aren’t sleeping like we want to. Getting a good night’s sleep is important for our bodies and brains. Missing sleep on a repetitive basis is detrimental to our health, and can even impact our mental health.
There can be many reasons why we aren’t able to sleep, but if you feel like you’ve reached the end of your search and still aren’t sleeping, it can be frustrating to understand why.
In order to sleep, your body needs two things: a healthy, regulated circadian rhythm and sleep drive.
- Circadian rhythm. This is your internal clock that governs when you should be awake and when you should go to sleep. It responds to light and changes in your environment and triggers the release of melatonin.
- Sleep drive. Your sleep drive is your need for sleep. It builds during the day as you expend energy and stay awake. By day’s end, it will signal your body that it is time to sleep.
While there are numerous activities and external factors that can interfere with your circadian rhythm and sleep drive, some of the most common are stress and worry.
Stress vs. Sleep
When you’re feeling uneasy, it’s almost impossible to rest. Physically, your body is in a heightened state of awareness when stressed because of hormones, like cortisol. Cortisol stimulates your sympathetic nervous system (SNS) which effectively places you on high alert.
To sleep, your body needs to switch gears and turn on the parasympathetic nervous system (PSNS). This helps your body relax, reduces your heart rate, relaxes your muscles, and aids in digestion. When your body turns on the PSNS, it’s more likely you’ll be able to sleep.
The Bottom Line
DTPT supports healthy sleep by helping the body switch from SNS to PSNS. Thus, the use of a weighted blanket that offers your body the sensation of deep touch pressure stimulation can help relax you, promoting healthy sleep.
But… Weighted Blankets Are So Expensive
Weighted blanket sticker shock is a real thing. Why should a blanket cost hundreds of dollars simply because it is filled with pellets or grains similar to the kind you’d find in a bean bag chair?
While manufacturers will say that weighted blankets are made with higher quality materials than “standard” blankets, we can’t help but wonder if that’s a legitimate claim. Ultimately, you’re paying for the science. Unlike a regular blanket, a weighted blanket has clout, and many producers obviously think you should pay for it.
Are There Alternatives to Weighted Blankets?
Luckily, if you want the benefits of deep touch pressure therapy, you don’t have to hand over half your paycheck to get it. There are options available for less. Here are three alternatives to consider.
1. Extra Blankets
Sometimes we complicate a simple solution. Adding additional blankets to your bed can give you a similar sensation to a weighted blanket. However, this might not be a viable solution for everyone. Extra blankets mean extra warmth which may not keep you comfortable. Additionally, unless the blankets you use have a certain weight of their own (like a quilt) you’ll end up under layers of light fluff.
2. Compression Clothing
Compression clothing works by using stretchy material to give your body the same deep touch pressure stimulation you’d experience with a weighted blanket. The drawbacks, however, are obvious. Some clothing may not be comfortable for sleeping. No one really plans to go to sleep in spandex.
Sweating, limited mobility, and — let’s be honest — chafing are all risks that could make sleep virtually impossible for the compression clothing wearer.
3. Sleep Pods
Sleep pods are wearable blankets that deliver deep touch pressure stimulation by cocooning you in a comfortable, stretchy fabric that moves with you as you sleep. They’re less expensive, more immersive, and quite honestly, a better fit than a weighted blanket.
How The Hug Sleep Sleep Pod Works
Not all sleep pods are created equally. When we set out on a mission to develop a better and more effective alternative to the classic weighted blanket we knew we had our job cut out for us.
We poured our passion for wellness and backgrounds in engineering and psychology into the Hug Sleep Sleep Pod, a wearable blanket that supports relaxation and good sleep habits.
Weighted blanket lovers often complain that the blankets themselves aren’t breathable. While you may love the comfort of a weighted blanket, if it makes you hot or causes you to feel restricted, you’re essentially taking a step backward (read: away) from sleep.
The Hug Sleep Sleep Pod is made from four-way stretch material that is breathable and lightweight, so you can wear it alone or under the weight of your comforter or other bedding. Our fabric helps regulate temperature so you can feel comfortable throughout the night.
If it sounds intimidating to wear a blanket, the Sleep Pod Move is for you. Our most innovative pod, it allows total freedom for your feet and increased mobility throughout the entire pod, while still maintaining effective pressure on your body through our patented design technology.
Need to get up to use the restroom? No problem. The Sleep Pod Move easily slips on and off effortlessly.
Deep Touch Pressure Stimulation Done Right
Getting the right amount of DTPT can be hard. Too much pressure can feel constricting and even create feelings of stress and nervousness. Too little pressure and you lose effectiveness. We tested our Sleep Pod rigorously to ensure we got it right.
You’ll find the Sleep Pod’s material is superior to weighted blankets that can feel heavy, oppressive, or suffocating. The Sleep Pod delivers pressure without the weight; a sensory experience more people feel comfortable with.
Unlike a weighted blanket, our Sleep Pods aren’t one-size-fits-all. We developed our Sleep Pod with varying sizes to accommodate all ages and heights, so you can get a Sleep Pod that fits like a glove.
This is important, because the foundation of the Sleep Pod’s deep touch pressure stimulation relies on the material’s ability to cocoon you in perfectly fitted comfort. Our sizing ensures you’ll get the perfect fit every time.
Skip The Blanket, Grab the Pod
Weighted blankets use deep touch pressure stimulation to help transition your body and mind from heightened sensitivity and nervousness to a state of relaxation and ease that supports sleep.
Weighted blankets come with a hefty price tag, and might not be the best option. Sleep Pods are superior over DTPT, are more comfortable, and more affordable.
If you’re having trouble getting good rest, slip into the soothing comfort of an eternal embrace. The Sleep Pod supports relaxation, calmness, and peaceful nights — explore it here.