Can a weighted blanket help with Dementia and Alzheimer's?
Dementia is the name for a set of symptoms that includes memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem-solving or language. Dementia develops when the brain is damaged by diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s disease is a physical disease that affects the brain.
A person in the earlier stages of Alzheimer’s will often have changes in their mood. They may become anxious, depressed or more easily annoyed. Many people lose interest in talking to people, or in activities and hobbies. In the later stages they may start to behave in ways that aren’t normal for them. These might include becoming agitated, calling out, repeating the same question, having disturbed sleep patterns or reacting aggressively. A weighted cover may help improve these symptoms.
The weight of the cover gives the body the feeling of being hugged, this deep pressure stimulation (DPS) leads to a state of relaxation. When you apply deep pressure to the body it switches from “fight or flight” mode to “rest and digest”. The pressure triggers a chain reaction in the body that releases an overall sense of calm and peace.
It’s been proven that a weighted cover can lower cortisol levels (the stress hormone) and promote production of the happiness hormone - serotonin and the sleep hormone - melatonin. The reduction in cortisol and increase in serotonin and melatonin combine to make the muscles and nervous system relax.
A weighted cover helps: • the muscles and nervous system relax reducing symptoms, such as agitation and aggression • improve sleep quality • reduce anxiety