Weighted blankets can be helpful for people of all ages — and for neurodivergent and neurotypical folks alike — and if your child is having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep, a weighted blanket for kids could make a big difference (for their sleep and yours). In the past, these blankets were typically only available at specialty stores, but as they’ve grown in popularity over the last few years, they’ve become much more widely available. If your kid’s comfy bed pillows, cozy pajamas, and cute bedding set aren’t doing the trick to prevent sleep issues, a kids’ weighted blanket could be the missing piece of the good-sleep puzzle.
Would my child benefit from a weighted blanket?
Weighted blankets are often recommended for autistic people and people with ADHD and/or anxiety, just to name a few. Alisa Elliott Rector, a pediatric occupational therapist in Anchorage, AK, says that kids who have a hard time settling — because of anxiety, for example — can find a weighted blanket comforting, as can kids who have trouble sleeping alone. If you notice your child performing sensory-seeking behavior during the day, such as stomping when they walk, hitting their head on things, and jumping up and down, the feeling of a weighted blanket could benefit them, too, says Rector.
How do weighted blankets help kids who have sleep issues?
“Proprioception is our sense of body awareness,” Rector told Scary Mommy. “If there’s a disruption in the proprioceptive pathways, we tend to need more of that to make us feel calm and in our bodies.” When a person’s body awareness is insufficient, they can find it harder to relax, and a weighted blanket can supply the necessary sensory input to the nervous system and help a restless or anxious person feel more grounded.
How do I choose the right weighted blanket for kids?
A weighted blanket should be about 10% of your child’s weight, plus one or two pounds. Weighted blankets were originally filled with beans but today typically contain plastic or glass beads. “I prefer the glass beads,” says Rector. “It’s a more consistent weight, and it’s more compressed.” (The weighted blankets below all contain glass or ceramic beads.)
One final piece of advice: Before you buy a weighted blanket, Rector suggests trying a regular, heavy quilt to make sure your kid isn’t bothered by the extra weight. If they’re comfortable with how it feels, check out our list below for the best weighted blankets for kids!
Editor’s Note: Make sure to check with a pediatrician before purchasing a weighted blanket. In some instances, weighted blankets can be dangerous for small children.
Best Weighted Blankets for Kids
A mom friend of mine who struggles with insomnia and also has an autistic son recommended this brand. Clearly, many people share her opinion — this particular blanket has almost 3,000 5-star ratings! The four-season blanket, which is made from breathable natural bamboo, uses a diamond-stitched design to ensure that the glass beads stay evenly distributed. The lightest option is seven pounds and 41″ x 60″. As a neutral, the gray will coordinate with many bedding colors and decor, but if your child prefers something a bit more colorful, there are tons of options too. This blanket is machine washable, and machine washable covers are available separately. Bonus: The company offers a full refund if you’re not happy with your blanket.
Lots of kids will love the fun space theme on this weighted blanket, which would go perfectly with those plastic glow-in-the-dark stars. (I don’t think those things ever come off — the ones in my son’s room have been up there forever!) The smallest size is three pounds and 36” x 48”; the heaviest is 10 pounds. If your LO isn’t a big space fan, no worries — there are three other options including dinosaurs and unicorns. This soft, seven-layer blanket is filled with glass beads and contains pockets that evenly distribute them.
This unicorn print is so cute and fun! If your kid isn’t a fan though, there are many other choices available including a nautical theme, sports theme, adorable pink llamas, dinosaurs, and some solids and patterns. Sizes start at 36” x 48” (five pounds), and the blanket is filled with glass beads contained in seven-inch squares. The cotton fabric is Oeko-Tex Certified, which means the material doesn’t contain any harmful substances, and you can machine wash the blanket and hang dry. A mom of an autistic child wrote in her review, “I cannot recommend this product enough, especially for a parent of a child with sensory issues, it has helped tremendously!”
Sure, this chunky-knit blanket is a bit of a splurge when it comes to weighted blankets, but in addition to being cozy and soft, it’s hand-knit from 100% organic cotton in a Fair Trade Certified™ facility. (The label signifies a commitment to safe working conditions, environmental protection, sustainable livelihoods, and community development funds.) With a single size/weight available, the blanket weighs eight pounds and measures 40” x 60”. Available colors are light pink, navy, light gray, and confetti (a mix of all three), one of which will likely meet your child’s demands — I mean, preferences. This blanket is machine washable and dryer-safe but has some extra instructions: Use a laundry bag for washing and drying and do not hang the blanket, because it may stretch.
A mom friend of mine who has a kid with sleep problems recommended the weighted blankets from this brand. The blanket pictured is a bit different from a typical weighted blanket, as it’s lap-sized. It weighs two pounds, measures at 12” x 18”, has glass bead filling, and is machine washable and dryer-safe. Reviewers note that the smaller size makes this blanket ideal for travel, homework time, and even school. If your kid likes bright colors, this blanket delivers, with vibrant pink, green, and blue options — but you can also choose the subtle black/gray and white/gray. (Each blanket has a different color on each side.) SensaCalm’s blankets are hand-sewn in the U.S.A. and have a 30-day money-back guarantee.
The smallest size of this weighted blanket is 20” x 30” and three pounds, which is somewhat rare for the blankets on Amazon. (It’s small enough to be used as a lap blanket.) Lots of colorways are available, and the blankets have a different color on each side. The combos include black/purple, purple/lavender, orange/gray, and black/gray. Note that this blanket is hand-wash only — and air dry. (For me, “hand wash” typically means “throw it in the washer on the hand-wash cycle and it’ll be fine” — but YMMV.) One mom wrote in her review, “I have a 10-year-old that still gets up in the middle of the night. … She has slept all night in her bed alone for the past 2 weeks!!! … Usually she would wake her sibling, me and her father at least 3 times a week in the middle of the night.”
Unlike the other weighted blankets on our list, this one contains ceramic beads rather than glass. (The company notes that they are finer and denser than glass and more durable than plastic.) This blanket also has more options for lower weights, starting at five pounds (36” x 48”) and continuing with six pounds, seven pounds, and so on. Available colors are navy and gray, and you can buy one without a duvet cover, with one cover (made from breathable Coolmax), or with two covers. (When it comes to kids’ bedding, it’s always nice to have a spare! Also, it looks like one of the covers has a fuzzy texture while the other is lightweight.) Among the 10,000+ reviews, one mom wrote this promising review: “My son has had trouble falling to sleep his entire [life]. … Not only does he now get to sleep sooner but he sleeps better through the night as well.”
Maybe the name of this company is supposed to act as a subliminal message — if you buy this blanket, your kid will say, “It’s time for bed? Sure!” (A mom can dream, right?) The sizes start at three pounds and 36” x 48”, and the blanket is available in the very popular weighted-blanket choices of navy and gray. Granted, those colors are pretty versatile for coordinating with decor, if that’s something that matters to you in your kid’s room. While the blanket itself isn’t machine washable, the included plush cover is, and it’s also dryer-safe. One grandmother wrote in her review, “I am raising my grandson who is on the autism spectrum [and] he has never slept much. This blanket has made all the difference. The first night with this blanket he slept ALL NIGHT!!!”
Looking for more patterns and prints that are kid-friendly? Sivio has got a ton of options to choose from (17 to be exact), along with four different sizes ranges from three to 10 pounds. “These blanket are the best ones I have bought for both my son’s,” said one reviewer. “They are cool feeling but yet comforting. The designs are adorable too. My 2 yr old was having trouble sleeping through out the night…He is sleeping so much better [now].”