Why Weighted Therapy?
Blankets, lap pads, dolls, and other weighted therapy items are frequently used in treatment solutions for children and adults with Sensory Processing Disorder, ADHD, Autism, Fragile X Syndrome and other neurological disorders because they provide significant proprioceptive and tactile input to the user.
In plain in language, weighted blankets provide a type of sensory input that can be missed or even craved by people with SPD or other neurological disorders – namely, a calming weight that soothes the individual and helps them to relax.
What Weighted Therapy Has Done For Us
All day long, our daughter struggles to figure out where her body is in space. She is constantly on alert – am I too close to that? Are my feet still below me? Did I set that down way too hard? By the end of the day, the Little Miss’s mind is exhausted from trying to figure out what her body was doing.
As we all know, the exhaustion can manifest itself in a dozen different ways, including hyperactivity, irritability, and in inability to think clearly. By bed time, Little Miss was unable to calm herself down to get to sleep. Her body had been on alert all day and she couldn’t shut it off. She screamed and cried piteously while we tried everything we could think of to soothe her. Everyone eventually passed out into an exhausted sleep, only to wake up un-rested the next day and do it all over again.
We researched, talked to our occupational therapist, and discovered weighted blankets. A weighted blanket provides instant proprioceptive and tactile input. It tells the child exactly where she is in space. More importantly, it provides the same kind of deep pressure as a bear hug (we all know that hugs feel good!)
With the weight of a lap pad or plush toy soothing his proprioceptive needs, Little Miss’s mind is free to focus on other things. Attention and focus return and her sensory seeking behaviors have decreased. She is more “with us.”
At the end of the day, we tuck her in with a weighted blanket and the look of relief on her face is obvious. You can almost feel the little sigh as she settles in.
Bed time can still be a trial, but things have gotten much better since we started using weighted therapy. We are down from weeks at a time with screaming and crying before bed time to once or twice a week.
Meet Peace Filled Blankets
I first heard about Peace Filled Blankets while I was still researching the idea of getting a weighted blanket for my daughter. Another SPD mom Tweeted about an eBay seller who had great quality items for a very affordable price. After seeing lap pads that started at $35 – USED, I decided to check the lead.
My daughter is a huge fan of Dora the Explorer, so when I saw a perfect little Dora lap pad in pink and purple for less than $20, my decision was made. Knowing how much my daughter loves her plush toys, I also decided to purchase a plush weighted lion for $14.99
Kristi, the owner of Peace Filled Blankets, customized the weight for Little Miss based on our OT’s recommendations. Because the blankets are sew to the point where they’re ready to be filled with weight, Kristi is able to quickly take custom requirements and send the order out within a day or two.
The lion (who was aptly named “Heavy” by my daughter) and the lap pad arrived within a few days. Little Miss was delighted. Although the smile on her face in the photo is really because Kristi agreed to ship the items together to save us postage fees!
Heavy became a regular companion in Little Miss’s bed from the night he arrived and the Dora lap pad is stowed in the living room – where we can pull it out at a moment’s notice. For all her love of the two items, we noticed one small problem… Little Miss is a very restless sleeper and Heavy was quickly tossed aside in the night. We decided that she might do better with a weighted blanket and contacted Kristi to see what she had available.
We ultimately decided to use our own fabric for Little Miss’s blanket and Kristi was more than accommodating to our request. In fact, Kristi noticed that the fabric we sent had a small flaw and purchased replacement fabric to make Little Miss’s blanket! (She’s using the good portion of fabric we sent to make more lap pads.)
So, you all know now that Peace Filled Blankets is the place to go for lap pads, plush, and blankets. But, if you’re not ready to buy just yet, here’s your big chance. Kristi has graciously offered to give one lucky winner a $60 gift credit plus free shipping for her wonderful items. The $60 credit is enough to purchase a medium size weighted blanket (like Little Miss’s) or a combination of smaller items.