Weighted Blankets: What Do We Know?
As a peds therapist and on staff expert for an equipment
company for special needs, I do get asked periodically for more resources on
weighted blankets. There have been some well-known
published studies on weighted vests including Fertel-Daly et all on the effects of a
weighted vest on attention to task and VandenBerg’s study on the use of a weighted
vest and on task behavior. Honaker
and Rossi wrote an informative two part series in the 2005 SISIS Quarterly
entitled Proprioceptive and Participation
at School: are weighted vests effective? Appraising the evidence (for a
quick recap of these articles visit Dr.
I have found however, that finding resources to support weighted
blankets still seems to be rather limited. I
did recently come across Tina Champagne’s work with using weighted blankets in
adult populations. Apparently Dr. Champagne
did her doctorate on this subject. Very
fascinating and in depth look at the type, weight, and use of weighted blankets
with adults with mental health issues.
Please take the time to look over her information and website which
includes the PPT presentation by Champagne, Mullen and Dickson from the 2007
Although an older resource, I still also use the book by
Walker and McCormack as a reference: The
Weighted Blanket: An Essential Nutrient in a Sensory Diet. Anecdotally, I have seen weighted blankets
work wonders for many children over the years but with the focus on EBP (Evidence Based Practice) we need
to be able to have the research to support continued use. So I thought I would float this question out
there and ask if anyone else has any other reference citing on this topic…and/or
for all you grad OT students out there with an interest in peds research consider
this your nudge! I look forward to
hearing from you.