Sensory Overload Coping Skills: Can Weighted Blankets Help?

Sep 12, 2022 • Luna Blanket

If you, your child, or someone you love is a highly sensitive person — perhaps with Asperger’s Syndrome, Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD), or ADHD — you know the value of having a handful of sensory overload coping skills to utilize. From making adjustments to the environment, crafting a game plan, and having certain tangible tools ready, there are multiple routes to help manage the possible effects of sensory overload. 

In this post, we’ll walk through how weighted blankets have proven to be a successful therapy tool for some when it comes to mitigating sensory overload. Like other tangible sensory tools, like stress balls or thinking putty, what’s inside weighted blankets can actually help those with sensory sensitivity feel less anxious and more grounded. We explain how weighted blankets work with Deep Pressure Stimulation, and what research says about adding this popular calming tool to your arsenal of sensory overload coping skills. 

What Is Sensory Overload?

Sensory overload occurs when the brain has difficulty receiving and processing information through the senses. Obviously, everyone can experience some sensory overload at some point or another. Consider being at a busy street festival or a bustling airport — it can certainly be overwhelming with all the people, sounds, smells, motion, etc. We know this feeling but can generally withstand it without a major interruption. For those with SPD or other conditions, the threshold to withstand such external stimuli is much smaller and can result in serious discomfort, or even pain and meltdowns as their brain tries to process all they are taking in. 

For these adults and kids, there is a disconnect between external stimuli and the way the brain takes in and responds to information. Sensory overload coping skills are very important to help manage these triggers. The Star Institute for Sensory Processing Disorder quotes psychologist and neuroscientist Dr. A. Jean Ayres, who compares sensory processing disorder to a neurological “traffic jam.” And as WebMD points out, “In some children, for example, the sound of a leaf blower outside the window may cause them to vomit or dive under the table.” Some specific touches, like a very light brush of the skin or a metal zipper touching the body, can be almost unbearable. 

So, What’s Inside Weighted Blankets and Can They Help? 

Collecting useful sensory overload coping skills can help relieve the potential suffering or meltdowns that unaddressed stimulation can cause for you, your child, or a loved one. We are excited to share the science behind Luna weighted blankets and how they help sensory disorders so you can add this to your toolkit. 

You may be surprised to learn that the many thousands of microscopic glass beads interwoven into the fibers of our Luna blankets allow for the best possible weight distribution with very little shifting. These beads ultimately provide the ideal weight which provides a form of Deep Pressure Stimulation. Deep Pressure Stimulation is a therapy in which firm but gentle pressure is applied to the body, producing an overall calming effect. This is commonly used by therapists who treat people with sensory processing disorders. A weighted blanket can provide this effect at home to help calm and ground someone experiencing sensory overload. 

Weighted Blankets for Kids: A Sensory Overload Coping Skills Must-Have

In children who aren’t old enough to express their frustration, a lack of sensory overload coping skills can sometimes lead to meltdowns. While most young children (regardless of whether they have sensory processing disorder) will throw a tantrum every now and then, meltdowns are different for those with a sensory processing disorder. When a child with high sensory sensitivity has a meltdown, it’s his or her way of responding to sensory overload.

Would a weighted blanket for kids help them experience fewer meltdowns? If they have a sensory processing disorder, resting under a weighted blanket can be an excellent self-soothing method. Research shows that weighted blankets can promote calm and ease anxiety, and using one is like getting a big, warm hug. This could be the difference between a major meltdown and an effective and graceful processing of overwhelmed senses.

Add a Luna Weighted Blanket to Your Sensory Overload Coping Skills 

Whether you, your child or a loved one experiences sensory overload, we’re sure you’ve found this post in hopes of being more prepared to prevent pain and meltdowns. We couldn’t recommend a Luna weighted blanket more, as our reviews from many happy customers share how it has improved the quality of sleep and ability to relieve anxiety to calm the body — and our research on Deep Pressure Stimulation proves why. Order a Luna weighted blanket for kids or yourself today, and you’ll experience the incredible calming effects of this incredible, yet cute and comforting blanket which you so deserve. 

Editor's Note: The content on this website is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. Talk to your doctor or healthcare provider before undertaking any type of therapy or treatment.

Classic Cooling Cotton Weighted Blanket

Classic Cooling Cotton Weighted Blanket

Care Instructions: Wash on a Low Gentle Setting | Dry on Low Heat or Hang Dry

  • Outer Shell: 100% cotton
  • Filling: 100% polyester & microfiber + glass beads
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Free of harmful chemicals
  • OEKO-TEX 100 certified (HKX 17867)
  • 8 loops on every corner and side to accommodate cover ties
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