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Are weighted blankets dangerous or safe?

People sleep better and feel less anxious with them, but are weighted blankets dangerous as well? Continue reading our guide to see some of the common concerns raised by both users and sceptics.

Suffocation

The main concern people have with weighted blankets is the risk of suffocation, specifically in children.

Weighted blankets have been linked to two known tragic deaths. One was an autistic 9-year old boy; the other was a 7-month old baby.

This means weighted blankets can pose a significant suffocation risk in children.

We advise that weighted blankets ARE NOT SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN under the age of 12, and that young children should never be left unattended with a weighted blanket for any length of time.

Teenagers (aged 13 to 19) can use a weighted blanket, but the blanket must weigh no more than 13% of the user’s body weight.

For healthy adults, the risk of suffocation is nil. However, physically disabled people and the elderly may find a weighted blanket too heavy.

Blood flow restriction

Weighted blankets do not compress the legs, arms or torso, and reduced blood circulation is not a concern.

If weighted blankets were of the compression type, the risk of blood flow restriction could be argued, but these blankets actually sit on top of you. They mould to the shape of your body, but don’t compress.

They are 100% safe to use from a blood flow standpoint, providing the blanket weighs no more than 13% of the person’s body weight.

Blood pressure, pulse, and oximetry

In 2015, a group of researchers conducted a study into the safety of a 30-pound (13.5kg) weighted blanket and its effects on blood pressure, pulse and oximetry.

The study found that across all 30 diverse participants, no adverse effects on these measurements were recorded. This data backs up our conclusion about blood flow restriction too. 

It also found weighted blankets lower anxiety levels and promote a sense of calmness.

Allergies

The materials that a weighted blanket are made from can trigger allergies, so choosing one that is hypoallergenic can eliminate the problem. We’re proud to say that the Koala Blanket is 100% hypoallergenic.

Our weighted blanket is made from 100% bamboo, eco-friendly cotton, non-toxic and BPA-free glass beads, poly-cotton & polyester. These materials are relatively unlikely to cause an allergic reaction in most people.

We recommend you consult your doctor before using a weighted blanket to make doubly sure it is safe for you.

Summing up

So, ARE weighted blankets dangerous? Well, weighted blankets:

  • Pose no suffocation risk for able adults, but they DO pose a significant suffocation risk in young children.
  • DO NOT restrict blood flow.
  • Have been clinically proven to have NO ADVERSE EFFECT on blood pressure, pulse rate or oximetry in adults.
  • Hypoallergenic weighted blankets are UNLIKELY to trigger allergies — but those who suffer from severe allergies to textiles and cosmetics should consult a doctor if in doubt about any of the materials.

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