Is it Safe to Sleep with a Blanket over your Head / Face !

Is it Safe to Sleep with a Blanket over your HeadSleeping with Blanket over your head is often a habit of some kids. Some do it to get rid of fear of darkness in the night, while some do it to get more warmth. Adults have their own reason to do that, such as using smartphone under the blanket and don't let anybody else know that, while others have their own psychological reasons. Most common thought that comes in the mind of an educated man is if we consume all oxygen inside the blanket then we might die. Here we are going to find if it is really possible to run out of oxygen by covering your head with a blanket.

Is it Safe to Sleep with a Blanket over your Head / Face ?
Yes it is safe only if you are a healthy adult and the blanket is not too thick. But if the blanket is too thick (or nearly airtight) then we will never recommend you to cover your head. Even a healthy individual can get suffocated under a thick blanket.

Can you run out of oxygen under a blanket ?
Usually blankets are not air-tight, so can't run out of oxygen. But if it is a thick fiber blanket then it may reduce the air flow. CO2 concentration near your face might also increase. It's possible to run out of oxygen under a blanket or any airtight covering if there isn't a fresh supply of air. When you're under a blanket or something airtight, you're using up the available oxygen and replacing it with carbon dioxide as you breathe. If the space is not ventilated or if there's a limited air supply, the concentration of carbon dioxide can increase to levels that become dangerous, leading to oxygen deprivation or asphyxiation, especially in a closed environment. It's crucial to ensure proper ventilation in enclosed spaces to prevent the risk of oxygen depletion and carbon dioxide buildup.

If an adult falls asleep with a blanket over their head and oxygen levels decrease, what are the potential consequences?
In many cases, the body has reflex mechanisms that trigger discomfort or awaken a person when there's a lack of oxygen or an increase in carbon dioxide levels. Sensations like feeling suffocated or struggling to breathe may prompt someone to instinctively remove the blanket or adjust their position to get more air. However, this response might not always occur, especially if the person is deeply asleep, under the influence of substances, or experiencing health issues that affect their sensitivity to such signals. Therefore, relying on these reflexes alone may not guarantee safety, and it's essential to prioritize proper ventilation and avoid sleeping with a covering over the head to prevent potential risks.

Must Read if you cover you head while sleeping !

  • Infants should never sleep with their head covered as this behavior is connected to sudden infant death syndrome. Reference
  • An unhealthy person or a person with some respiratory diseases should never sleep with face covered by a blanket.
  • Even a healthy person should not use a thick fiber blanket to cover his/her head. More CO2 concentration can cause brain damage. However such blankets are not air tight but they can reduce air flow through them to a great extent.
  • You should not just fear about lesser oxygen inside the blanket, but also the cleanliness of the blanket used to cover the face. 
  • A new blanket should never be used to cover head as it may have some manufacturing dust with some micro-organisms which can easily enter your body through nose, ear or mouth. It should have been washed at least twice before you cover your head with it.
  • A very old blanket may also be harmful as it may also have dust deposited inside its fibers.
  • Inhaling dust through a blanket on regular basis can damage your lungs gradually.
  • Asthmatic people are never advised to cover their face while sleeping as it reduces the fresh air supply. 
  • A thin blanket might not be harmful as enough air can flow through it and usually they are washed at home regularly.
  • Sleeping with a blanket over your head reduces your hearing and smelling sense, which may help you in sleeping better, but it can also make you vulnerable to any danger in your surroundings.

Psychology behind sleeping with a blanket over head

The act of sleeping with a blanket over one's head can sometimes be associated with psychological comfort or a sense of security. It may evoke feelings of safety and coziness, similar to the comfort provided by swaddling or being wrapped in a blanket as a child.

Psychologically, this behavior might stem from various reasons:
  • Security and Comfort: Some individuals find a sense of safety and comfort by covering themselves with a blanket while sleeping. This can be a way to create a personal, enclosed space that feels secure and protected.
  • Reducing Sensory Stimulation: Blocking out light or external stimuli by covering the head with a blanket might help some people achieve a darker and quieter environment, promoting better sleep.
  • Habit or Ritual: It could also be a habitual behavior, influenced by childhood habits or past experiences that associate covering the head with a feeling of safety and relaxation.
  • Anxiety or Stress Relief: For some, the act of covering the head while sleeping might serve as a coping mechanism to alleviate stress, anxiety, or feelings of vulnerability.
What if i can't sleep with my face open ?
If you can't sleep due to some light falling on your eyes (as some people have tendency to sleep in complete darkness), then you may use an eye mask to cover your eyes only. It may also help you if you feel some kind of fear.

A good ventilated room is often suggested by doctors to live a healthy life. Same applies to your blanket while sleeping. It is not a healthy habit to sleep with your head covered. However, it's essential to note that while this behavior might provide a subjective sense of security or comfort for some individuals, it's important to ensure proper ventilation and safety during sleep to avoid potential risks associated with restricted airflow or suffocation under the blanket.

Post a Comment