Can a weighted blanket cause pain?

Weighted blankets have been proven in clinical studies to help people with anxiety and insomnia feel calmer and sleep better. 

But if you suffer from a medical condition that causes you physical pain or discomfort, the last thing you want is something that’ll make it worse -- and especially when you are cuddling up on the sofa or trying to get to sleep. 

So, can weighted blankets cause pain? 

The short answer is yes -- but only if the blanket aggravates an existing injury or medical condition that causes you pain or discomfort. 

Of course, this also depends on the person wearing the blanket! 

The truth about weighted blanket pain 

The truth is this - on their own, weighted blankets aren’t heavy enough to place enough stress on a healthy person’s muscles, joints and bones to cause pain. 

But, the weight is sufficient enough to potentially aggravate injuries or problems your body already has, such as an old sports injury or fibromyalgia pain. 

Although, this can usually be remedied by choosing a lighter blanket. 

A small number of people have experienced pain wearing a weighted blanket, and we do not discount these experiences. We believe them to be 100% genuine. 

But there is no medical evidence to suggest this to be a widespread issue. It depends on the user and pain has only ever occurred in isolated incidents. 

The bottom line: You are unlikely to experience pain wearing a weighted blanket and reported incidents of pain are isolated. 

The safe science behind weighted blankets 

Weighted blankets simulate a therapy called Deep Pressure Therapy which is used in hospitals to calm patients suffering from anxiety and spatial disorders. 

DPS is non-medicinal and non-addictive. It is enabled with a device, not drugs, so none of the risks associated with medicine are at play here. 

In hospitals, DPS is simulated using ‘squeeze machines’ which replicate the sensation of being bear hugged. Weighted blankets replicate the same sensation in a portable way, and they are widely recommended by medical experts. 

Clinical studies have shown weighted blankets and weighted blanket therapy can help with insomnia [1], anxiety [2], ADHD [3] and Tourette syndrome [4].  

Furthermore, there are thousands of real use cases where people’s sleep and mental health state has been improved with Deep Pressure Therapy. 

The simple truth is if you are looking for a weighted blanket because you struggle to sleep well or are anxious, then it could really help you. DPS is a 100% safe therapy and you have nothing to lose by trying it. We say give it a go. 

Choosing the right weighted blanket 

A weighted blanket should weigh 7-13% of your body weight. The Koala Blanket is available in 4kg, 6.8kg and 9kg weights.

If a weighted blanket is too heavy for you, it can restrict your ability to get comfy and you may start to feel too warm. Most people should aim for a number around 10% of their body weight to feel as comfortable as possible. 

If you suffer from a medical condition that causes you physical pain or discomfort, choose our 4kg blanket. This will minimise the chances of it aggravating your condition and you can always jump up a weight when you are ready. You might also like to consult your physician or GP if you are unsure about weighted blanket therapy. 

Good luck!

Sources (clinical studies):

  1. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/7b52/514a1b040f0b631168d98cfa9730cfc5a9dd.pdf
  2. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1300/J004v24n01_05
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20662681
  4. https://www.tourettes-action.org.uk/storage/downloads/1487860486_TS--the-simple-truth---A-guide-to-TS-for-children-and-young-people.pdf