When we think of stuffed animals, we often think of children and their favorite bedtime toy. When we get older, we tend to outgrow stuffed animals, but there’s really no need to outgrow them or think we’re “too old” for stuffed animals. If you or someone you know at any age is dealing with anxiety, having a stuffed animal is one of many ways that can aid their anxiety.
- A Stuffed Animal Is Like a Security Blanket — Having a stuffed animal friend is like having your very own security blanket. Whenever you feel scared or alone, all you need to do is take a look at your little friend and feel a sense of security. When you send someone a stuffed animal care package, you’re not just giving them a gift. You’re giving them peace of mind. People often associate sleeping with a stuffed animal as a form of comfort only for children. You don’t have to be a child to reap the benefits of having a stuffed animal by your side. If you have an older child who could use a little stuffed animal friend, or if you want something extra soft to cuddle with at night other than a pillow, get a stuffed animal.
- They Can Be Personalized — Stuffed animals don’t just have to be a standard teddy bear. They can be a beautiful mythical creature like a unicorn. Think about your favorite animal and chances are there’s a stuffed animal version of your favorite creature. Your stuffed animal care package can even come with a thoughtful note just from you. Whenever someone misses you, they’ll have a stuffed animal of their favorite critter or mythical creature and a loving note with warm wishes from you.
- They’re Soft and Snuggly — According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders affect 18.1 percent of the adult population. If you or someone you know is affected by an anxiety disorder, you’re not alone. It’s nothing to feel bad or ashamed about. It’s important to do whatever we can to take care of ourselves and our loved ones. Sometimes, that means showing we care in simple everyday ways. Give yourself or someone you love a soft and snuggly stuffed animal. No matter where they are, they can hug their plush animal friend and feel a little more at ease.
- Stuffed Animals Are Cute — The truth is that stuffed animals are so cute to look at. When someone is feeling anxious, would they rather look at something uncomfortable and scary or something cute and relaxing? The same way spas play relaxing music when you’re getting a massage or babies enjoy the soothing sounds of white noise to fall asleep, being able to touch and feel a cute stuffed animal is a great way to calm any nerves.
- Familiarity Breeds Comfort — If you have a little one who’s at boarding school or camp, or a grown kid who’s going off to college, there’s no better way to remind them you’re always thinking of them than with a stuffed animal care package. In fact, the giving doesn’t have to stop just at people you personally know. Spread the love through the gift of giving by sending care package donations. They could go to domestic abuse shelters or children’s hospitals to help others get through challenging times.
- They Make Great Gifts — Stuffed animals make great gifts that can be passed on time and time again. Someone can build a collection of stuffed animal friends. They can pass it onto another friend or family member whenever they want to spread the love. They can pass it on to the next generation of stuffed animal lovers.
- Stuffed Animals Are a Self-Love Language — There are so many ways to show someone you care. Giving yourself a stuffed animal can be an act of self-love. It’s a way of reminding yourself that you also deserve something soft and snuggly. Often, we’re so busy thinking about other people that we forget to take care of ourselves. Give yourself the same amount of care and grace that you give others. If you feel like you’d benefit from having a cute little stuffed animal to look at and squeeze when you’re anxious or stressed, give yourself that gift of calm and relaxation. You’ll be glad you did.
- They’re a Tool for Coping — Stuffed animals are a tool for coping with anxiety. They’re not a hammer or a chisel. They’re a snuggly tool to hold closely and tightly whenever you need a little crew comfort. One of the five love languages is physical touch. If we’re in a place or time where we can’t receive a physical hug from a loved one, sometimes having a stuffed animal helps act as a way to get in a little snuggle to remind us that our loved ones are always there even when they can’t be.
Having a stuffed animal to aid with anxiety is one of many tools in a mental health and wellness toolbox. It’s one of the softest and plushest tools out there, so use it wisely and with care whenever you want to give someone a little furry friend.