Weighted Blanket For Restless Legs, Does It Work?
Weighted blankets are great for those suffering from restless legs syndrome. It works on two levels. First, it increases levels of dopamine in your brain, and RLS is linked to low levels of the hormone. Secondly, weighted blankets help you relax at night, and many people have RLS as a result of anxiety and stress.
What is restless legs syndrome (RLS)?
Restless legs syndrome involves the strong, sudden urge to move your legs while you're resting. Most people describe the sensation as a twitchy or tickling feeling inside your legs as you're lying in bed. The only way to relieve this sensation in the moment is to move your legs or get up and walk around.
Others feel RLS as a kind of electric shock or burning sensation through their veins. It's an unpleasant experience that can keep people up for hours after they wanted to go to sleep.
There are different types of RLS based on what the underlying cause is. Your treatment varies depending on what precisely causes it in your body.
What causes restless legs?
Talk with your doctor if you believe you have restless legs syndrome. He or she can conduct various tests to determine what's causing it in you.
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that sends signals from the body to the brain. It plays a vital role in monitoring your physical movements. Some people don't create enough of it, which results in RLS.
Due to hormonal fluctuations, many pregnant women suffer through restless legs syndrome. Additionally, pregnancy may bring about a deficiency of minerals and vitamins, which also plays a role. Usually, it goes away a few weeks after giving birth.
Studies have found a potential genetic link for RLS. That means if one or both of your parents had it, then there's a greater likelihood you're going to develop it, too.
Lack of iron in the brain can also contribute to RLS. In some cases, a blood test may not reveal whether a patient has an iron deficiency. Iron levels may look normal in the blood, but they lack in the brain.
Pre-existing health conditions
RLS can sometimes develop as a symptom of other health problems. Diabetes, kidney issues, and Parkinson's disease all have RLS as a symptom.
RLS negatively impacts your sleep health
Since RLS comes forward when you're at rest, most people notice it at night. You may spend hours trying to get comfortable. But no matter how hard you try, your legs always feel itchy, so you move them around.
RLS may even wake you up in the middle of the night due to how uncomfortable it can become. Sleep deprivation is common in individuals with this disorder, and they feel fatigued the next day. Fortunately, treatments are available to help you manage RLS and get a better night's rest.
5 ways to treat your RLS naturally
Some people may need to take medication to get their RLS under control. However, some people find relief by implementing natural lifestyle changes.
Yoga forces you to focus on stretching and breathing. This calms your nerves and helps sooth the senses. Since many people have RLS as a result of anxiety, yoga allows you to center yourself so that you go to bed more relaxed.
Take iron supplements
Plenty of foods, like pomegranates, honey, and apples, contain iron. You should try incorporating more of these into your diet if your iron levels are low. In the event you still can't get enough, then try taking iron supplements to help get your levels to normal.
Avoid sugar and caffeine at night
Sugar and caffeine can over-stimulate your body, especially if you consume them a few hours before bedtime. They worsen the symptoms of RLS, so you have an even harder time going to sleep. Stick with healthy late night snacks, such as cheese and crackers.
Eliminate distractions from your bedroom
For any sleep disorder, you want to ensure your bedroom is prime for sleeping. This means keeping the temperature cool and not looking at smartphones or tablets right before bedtime. Electronics emit blue light that interfere with your body's melatonin production, making it harder to stay asleep.
Use a weighted blanket
Weighted blankets result in a phenomenon known as Deep Pressure Stimulation (DPS). This occurs when weight is evenly-distributed over your body, triggering pressure points to help you relax. A weighted blanket basically "hugs" you, releasing serotonin, which promotes calmness, and melatonin, which regulates your sleep cycles.
Weighted blanket: A simple RLS solution that actually works
Weighted blankets come in a variety of shapes and sizes. It's recommended to get one that's 10 percent of your body weight. This allows you to really feel the pressure, so you take advantage of the DPS.
How it works
Restless legs syndrome is the result of your body being hyper-stimulated. You need to calm your body down, and weighted blankets help with that.
The pressure applied by this blanket lowers your heart rate. This lower rate leads to an overall sensation of calmness. Hitting those pressure points also causes the brain to release dopamine. Since RLS can occur as a result of low dopamine levels, your legs should feel much more comfortable.
The brain also releases more melatonin with a weighted blanket. Melatonin is an essential hormone that regulates your sleep-wake cycle. Insufficient melatonin can result in sleep disturbances, such as waking up suddenly in the middle of the night.
DPS has been used as therapy for decades now. It's a proven concept, and with a weighted blanket, you get that therapy any time you need it.
What its made of
Weighted blankets are made out of premium construction. For example, Snuggle Pro blankets are made from 100 percent Oeko-Tex certified, hypoallergenic cotton. Everything is non-toxic, so you feel at ease putting it over your body.
Plus, cotton is incredibly breathable. It provides maximum warmth and comfort to encourage relaxation and lets you gently fall into a peaceful night's sleep.
Weighted blankets are great for all kinds of people. Whether you have RLS or not, here are some other advantages to expect when you start sleeping with a weighted blanket.
- Overcome insomnia - For a variety of reasons, many people just can't go to sleep at night. Studies have found adults with insomnia who use weighted blankets had an easier time going to sleep than people who didn't.
- Promote a happier mood - Many people feel depressed or irritable because they're not getting enough of the right hormones in the brain. Deep Pressure Stimulation promotes the release of serotonin, which is the happiness hormone. You wake up in the morning feeling happy and refreshed.
- Alleviate pain - To get off painkillers, more people need to try weighted blankets. Since the weight essentially grounds the body, it creates a calming effect. This deep pressure touch helps relieve chronic anxiety and stress, which can lead to chronic pain over time if left untreated.
3 things to look for in a weighted blanket
You can only benefit from a weighted blanket if you get the right one for you. Numerous varieties are out there, and there are a few factors you need to keep in mind.
1. Size and Weight
Ideally, you want a weighted blanket that's 10 percent of your body weight. That means if you're 150 pounds, then your weighted blanket should be 15 pounds. As far as size, get one that fits over your bed. Sizes from Twin to King are available.
Weighted blankets have fillings to help give the structure evenly-distributed weight. Many different kinds of fillings can be used, including glass beads, plastic pellets, and even sand. Snuggle Pro uses non-toxic glass beads to provide gentle, even pressure throughout the blanket (one of the best filler options available)
Snuggle Pro weighted blankets are made out of cotton. This keeps them breathable, so you remain cool in the summer and cozy in the winter. It's soft to the touch, so you love cuddling up with your weighted blanket.
Shop the #1 weighted blanket, online (+ sleep well)
Your sleep isn't just important... it's essential. Why settle for poorly designed (+ cheaply made) weighted blankets? Snuggle Pro crafts every blanket with quality of materials, care of attention, and your best sleep in mind. Backed by real science, sleep studies & your ultimate comfort Snuggle Pro exists to help you get your best sleep.
Shop Snuggle Pro, here, today (and redefine your sleep)!