Proper rest is so incredibly important to our health and well-being. Those who can’t sleep suffer from an inability to concentrate, a lack of focus, depression, moodiness, irritability, and are more likely to make mistakes, says MedicalNewsToday.com.
We all know how it feels when you can’t sleep. After a night of tossing and turning, maybe catching a half an hour of zzzzzs here, or 15 minutes there, worrying about how you’re going to be able to function the next day, perhaps being annoyed at a partner who is sleeping peacefully beside you, mornings usually aren’t pleasant, and the rest of the day can be very tough to get through.
Hippo Hug entered the weighted blanket business after its founder, an Early Intervention Therapist for those diagnosed with autism, created a custom heavy sleep sack for a client who was seeking out deep pressure touch stimulation at night. The sleep sack worked, and the potential for weighted blankets to help a huge sector of the population that can’t sleep opened up a world of possibilities.
Deep pressure touch stimulation essentially acts like a firm, gentle hug, which relaxes the nervous system to initiate a calming feeling. The sympathetic nervous system switches to the parasympathetic nervous system, or from “fight or flight” to “rest and digest.” Those who can’t sleep may be experiencing prolonged periods of their sympathetic nervous system running at peak capacity. This is particularly true of those with autism or anxiety. You’re more likely to feel tired, edgy, and even physically unwell.
Not only do weighted blankets help calm you down, they also help to soothe you off to sleep more quickly, and stay asleep for longer. Weighted blankets help stop that brain-body cycle where your mind convinces your body that something is wrong (or vice versa), and a vicious cycle ensues where your nervous system receives more and more stimulation until you are too amped up to sleep.
How Much Sleep Do I Need?
According to the Mayo Clinic, even though needs vary, healthy adults require at least seven hours of sleep every night in order to function at their highest. Teenagers need from eight to 10 hours of sleep each night, kids ages six to 13 require from nine to 11 hours of sleep, and little ones from three to five years old need from 10 to 13 hours of sleep.
Children tend to feel the effects of sleep deprivation much more acutely and negatively than adults. They are not able to process their emotions, which can quickly overwhelm them to the point of a colossal tantrum being thrown. Weighted blankets begin providing real benefits to children over the age of four. Our most popular weighted blankets for kids weigh seven pounds and are sized 40 inches wide by 50 inches tall, ideal for a twin bed. Parents report that their children fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer after using a Hippo Hug weighted blanket, and parents also love that they can match the blanket to their child’s personality while also supporting a small business with a Made in Canada product.
Hippo Hug weighted blankets are very special in that they can be fully customized. Our clients can choose weight dispersion to provide the exact right amount of pressure in the places they want. Some, such as those with restless legs syndrome, prefer more weight in the leg area. Some of our elderly clients tend to like less weight at the top so they are able to move their blanket around easier. We have created a unique “Try Before You Buy” blanket program that allows you to borrow a blanket for a while to see if it is the tool you need to help put you to sleep.
Cool it Down
Some experts suggest that sleeping in a cool environment is beneficial for those who have difficulties drifting off to slumber. Dr. Christopher Winter, Medical Director at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine, states that rooms should be between 16 and 19.5 degrees Celsius for the best sleep. A room warmer than 21 degrees Celsius will stop the production of melatonin, which is essential for a restorative sleep and can even help you look younger. Winter suggests that body temperatures must be reduced in order for the sleep process to start.
Hippo Hug uses proprietary ceramic-coated weighted discs, sized just a few millimeters thick and about five centimeters wide. This means they carry a very low profile, so your weighted blanket looks just like a regular blanket. Hippo Hug blankets can also easily be placed in the freezer for 15 to 30 minutes before bedtime to help lower your body temperature down enough to ease you off to dreamland.
In addition, we have hundreds of fabrics to choose from for you to match both your décor and your sleep style. For those who sleep hot, we recommend choosing cotton for the top and bottom fabrics, as it is the most breathable.
Breaking the Cycle
When we can’t sleep, we can get desperate, and it’s not uncommon for people to turn to both prescription and non-prescription drugs to help them get their rest. Unfortunately, these can be habit-forming, with many beginning to completely depend on medication to get them to sleep. According to SleepEducation.org, some other ways to break the “bad sleep” cycle include:
- Keeping a consistent sleep schedule, even on the weekends
- Setting a bedtime that is early enough for you to get the recommended amount of sleep
- Turning off all electronic devices 30 minutes before bedtime
- Keeping your bedroom calm, comfortable, cool and quiet
- Creating a relaxing bedtime routine
- Avoiding consuming caffeine or alcohol before bedtime
- Exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy diet
You should be sure to talk with your doctor before replacing prescription medicine with a weighted blanket.
More Hippo Hug Products
Additional products we have to assist in helping induce relaxation to assist you in feeling and performing your best include:
If you have any questions about how a weighted product may benefit you, please feel free to contact us through email, by phone, or come on by our storefront a few blocks east of Chinook Centre.