Practical uses for weighted stuffed animals.
Peace Weighted Products stuffed animals are the most versatile weighted therapy product available. Peace Weighted Products weights the stuffed animals with new aquarium gravel contained in bean bag pouches. The bean bag pouches prevent the aquarium gravel from spilling out if a hole develops in the animal over time. The bean bag pouches also prevent the weight from puddling into the feet and hands of the stuffed animal. The manufacturer of the stuffed animals recommends surface cleaning only. However, many parents report that knotting the stuffed animal into a pillowcase and then running it through the machines seems to work nicely should a washing be needed.
How can a weighted stuffed animal benefit your child?
–Sits in child’s lap during seat work, eating, riding in the car, at church, riding in the shopping cart, and in waiting rooms. Provides calming deep pressure. Reminds the child to stay seated. Gives the child a mindless fidget (ears, scarves, stuffed animal feet, etc)
–Makes a fantastic transition tool. Carried in the halls, classroom, or at the grocery store…provides calming heavy work while occupying the hands to keep them from touching things on the walls or knocking things off the grocery store shelves.
–Provides a handy tool for combating anxiety. Many kids get stressed when spoken to directly. Having a weighted stuffed animal nearby enables the caregiver to instruct the stuffed animal rather than the child. Example: “Hey, Bear. We’re about to walk down the hall to Art Class.” A child who stops in door frames frequently overcomes his anxiety of entering a room when focused on making the stuffed animal enter rather than himself (all while receiving beneficial heavy work input from carrying the weight).
–Stuffed animals make great chew toys. The ears, scarves, and extremities of the stuffed animal frequently get chewed on by kids which has the added bonus of soaking up the resulting drool.
Note: the stuffed animal will show extreme wear where chewed and may develop holes. The weighting material (aquarium gravel) is contained in bean bags and will not spill out if a hole develops. However, the poly fiber fill (stuffing) can spill out of holes.
–Great sleep aids–kids frequently snuggle their weighted animal while sleeping to provide comforting deep pressure. For best results, a weighted blanket should be used for sleeping, but weighted animals make a great addition to any parent’s sensory toolbox.