I am not a good sleeper…. that irony is not lost on me. I mean, I do sleep well…. now. But small changes to my life can have large impacts on my sleep. If I am anxious about something, I wake at 4am. If I am stressed I find it very hard to fall asleep. During one particularly awful spell of sleeping, in 2018, Aroha bought me a weighted blanket.
I have to be honest; I was very sceptical. I sleep hot. I am claustrophobic. Being under a weighted blanket sounded like some form of medieval torture specifically designed for me. But then again, I was sleeping terribly and willing to try anything.
So that evening, with excitement (and trepidation), I got into bed and began my first night under a weighted blanket. The initial feeling of being under a weighted blanket was quite unusual. The lightness of a duvet was replaced by this gentle pressure over my whole body. I expected to heat up and start to par boil beneath it… I didn’t. In fact, I was cool, cooler than under my duvet. The gentle pressure was lighter than expected. Although weighted blankets are heavy, once the weight is distributed over you, they don’t feel heavy.
I noticed a calmness in me. Normally when falling off to sleep I toss and turn a lot, on a constant crusade to find the unattainable perfectly comfortable sleeping position. With the weighted blanket, I didn’t do this. The pressure made me calm. The calmness stopped the need to toss and turn.
I woke up several times that first night, but instead of the usual cat and mouse game to try and get back to sleep, I would change position and drift back to sleep quickly. You can sleep under a weighted blanket whether you are a back, side or tummy sleeper. Due to anxiety, I was normally waking up at 4am and having the dreaded ‘wide awake until just before the alarm goes off’ syndrome. I woke up at 4am, but I fell back to sleep quickly and slept through to my alarm.
The next day I was refreshed. I was mentally calmer, more resilient, less reactive. Anyone who has had sleep challenges knows the immense power that comes with a good night’s sleep.
I was hooked on my blanket. This obsession led to us designing the Somni Weighted Blanket which solved a number of fundamental flaws that we found in other blankets. Somni isn’t so much about sleep, it is about the power which good sleep can give you during the day.