Weighted stuffed animals are a popular self-care tool for many individuals. The additional weight offers a deep-pressure touch sensation that mimics the feeling of someone hugging you, which can help reduce stress and increase serotonin levels in the brain. These stuffed animals are often used by children with anxiety, autism or other sensory processing disorders to promote relaxation and improve sleep quality, as well as adults who experience depression and anxiety.
When choosing a weighted stuffed animal, there are several factors that should be considered including age, size, sensory needs, and recommendations from professionals. These can help guide the selection process, but it is important to keep in mind that individual preferences and trial and error will play a significant role in finding the ideal weight.
In general, younger children require a lighter weight compared to teenagers and adults. Infants and toddlers may benefit from a weighted stuffed animal that ranges between 1 to 2 pounds. For older children and adults, a weighted stuffed animal that weighs between 3 to 5 pounds is typically recommended.
When making your own weighted stuffed animal, there are many different materials that can be utilized. The most common is rice, but you can also use dry beans, sand or even plastic pellets. The most important thing is to ensure that the amount of weight added is evenly distributed throughout the stuffed animal and that it feels comfortable and safe. Experimenting with a few different options is recommended and can be done by adding small amounts of each to the stuffed animal until the desired weight is achieved. weighted stuffed animal