As a carer, you are often looking for ways to help children and young people in your care to manage the impacts of trauma. Unfortunately, weighted blankets and other weighted items can pose significant safety risks, including physical injury and suffocation, if not used according to professional occupational therapist advice.

The most common safety concerns include using weighted blankets that are too heavy for children and using weighted blankets at night while children are sleeping.

In light of these safety concerns, please note that weighted blankets and other weighted items must not be used as a therapeutic tool for any children or young people in care without the prescription of an occupational therapist as well as the approval of the child’s DCP case worker.

The occupational therapist must prescribe the size and weight of the blanket or item and provide written guidance outlining the intended use, the frequency and length of time of use, review period and other relevant safety precautions before weighted blankets and other weighted items are provided to children in care.

If you are concerned, please talk to your child’s case worker.