August 6, 2018 by Chris Chapman
Are Electric Blankets Safe to Use While Preganant? Can You Run Electric Blankets Under Your Duvet? What About Electromagnetic Fields?
Electric blankets and throws have come a long way since their invention in 1912! They’re more comfortable and more energy-efficient than they’ve ever been, and as a result, more and more people are spending winter nights snuggling up under electric blankets instead of turning on their costly central heating.
Despite all this, there are still a few health and safety questions you might have if you’ve never owned an electric blanket before. We’ll do our best to answer the most common electric blanket safety questions below. If you have any questions you think we’ve missed, just ask them in the comments below!
Can I Use Electric Blankets While Pregnant?
The short answer is yes, but there are a few things you should be aware of. There aren’t any studies that show electric blankets are harmful to unborn babies or pregnant mothers – the electromagnetic fields given off by electric blankets aren’t any different from the electromagnetic fields given off by other appliances in your home. However, if you are pregnant you do need to be careful not to overheat. Always check that your electric blanket has overheat protection (most modern heated blankets have this) just in case. It’s also advisable that you pick an electric blanket with a timer so you can program it to turn off in the night.
One final point is that you shouldn’t use electric blankets in bed after you’re 36 weeks gone. This is so you don’t ruin your heated blanket if your waters break in the night!
Can I Use an Electric Blanket for My Children’s Bed?
Electric blankets shouldn’t be used as bedding for babies’ cots or for very young children who are at risk of wetting the bed. The Electrical Safety Council say you can use electric blankets for an older child’s bed provided “the controls have been pre-set by a parent, or you’re satisfied that the child is able to use the appliance safely”. It’s also important that your blanket has overheat protection and a timer so you can completely control the temperature of your child’s electric blanket.
Can I Use Electric Blankets All Night?
This depends on the blanket but many electric blankets are safe for all-night use. In fact, many blankets, such as this Sweet Dreams fitted electric blanket, are actually designed to be used all night and are more affordable to run than central heating. If you’re concerned about using your electric blankets all night, many of them have programmable timers that you can use to turn them off after you fall asleep.
Can I Use an Electric Blanket Under My Duvet?
Again, this depends on the blanket. Many electric blankets are designed to work as fitted sheets or as heated mattress toppers. This means they’re perfectly safe to use under a duvet and are actually a great, economical way to keep warm in bed.
Do Electric Blankets Give off a Harmful Electromagnetic Field?
Like all electric appliances, electric blankets do have an electromagnetic field. However, this isn’t any stronger than the one given off by other electrical appliances in your home and it won’t harm you.
Is It Safe to Buy a Second Hand Electric Blanket?
Almost never! Unless you know the person you’re buying from really well and you’re happy that you know where it came from, we don’t recommend buying used electric blankets. This is because you don’t know when the blanket was bought, and how up-to-date its safety certificates are. You also don’t know how much it’ll have been used and whether there’s any wear and tear on your fabric. It might seem tempting to pick up a cheap pre-owned electric blanket but getting a new blanket with some comfortable and durable material will save you a lot of trouble in the long run.
How Often Should I Replace My Electric Blanket?
The Fire Service recommends that you should replace your electric blanket every 10 years. If your blanket’s seen better days, it may be time to throw it out and get a new one. Even if you haven’t used your electric blanket and you’ve had it stored away for a few years, they can still accumulate wear and tear while they’re in storage.
Is It Safe to Use and Electric Blanket if I Have a Pacemaker?
According to the NHS, it’s completely fine to use your electric blanket if you’ve got a pacemaker. Always double check with your doctor if you have any concerns. Make sure you’re using an electric blanket with a timer and overheat protection so you avoid overheating while you’re asleep.
Is It Safe to Use an Electric Blanket if I Have Diabetes?
Diabetes can cause nerve damage which can mean you might not be able to feel when your electric blanket is too hot. Luckily, most quality electric blankets will have overheat protection so that your blanket can’t hot enough to burn you, so most modern electric blankets are perfectly safe to use if you’re diabetic.