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Dr Temple Grandin's Research Inspires Calming Clothing Company

Calming Clothing Company


RESEARCH - DEEP PRESSURE STIMULATION



The ideology of 'Calming Clothing' originated from the concepts, research and personal experience of Dr Temple Grandin.

Temple Grandin (born August 29, 1947) is an American doctor of Animal science and professor at Colorado State University, best selling author, and consultant to the livestock industry on animal behaviour.

As a person with high-functioning autism, Grandin is also noted for her work in Autism advocacy and is the inventor of the squeeze machine designed to calm hypersensitive people.

The basis of our products originated from Temple Grandin's research on the calming effects of Deep Touch pressure.

The following is an excerpt from her 1992 paper:


Clinical Effects of Deep Touch Pressure


Deep touch pressure is the type of surface pressure that is exerted in most types of firm touching, holding, stroking, petting of animals, or swaddling. In contrast, light touch pressure is a more superficial stimulation of the skin, such as tickling, very light touch, or moving hairs on the skin. In animals, the tickle of a fly landing on the skin may cause a cow to kick, but the firm touch of the farmer's hands quiets her.

Occupational therapists have observed that a very light touch alerts the nervous system, but deep pressure is relaxing and calming.

Deep pressure touch has been found to have beneficial effects in a variety of clinical settings (Barnard and Brazelton 1990, Gunzenhauser 1990). In anecdotal reports, deep touch pressure has been described to produce a calming effect in children with psychiatric disorders.

Calming Clothing Company

280 gram Combed Cotton Lycra with the seams sewn externally, then sewn down.



Deep pressure stimulation, such as rolling up in a gym mat, has been used to calm children with autistic disorder and ADHD (Ayres 1979, King 1989). Lorna King (personal communication, 1990) reports that children with sleeping problems appear to sleep better inside of a mummy sleeping bag, which adapts to fit the body snuggly.

It also has been used to reduce tactile defensiveness in children who cannot tolerate being touched. McClure and Holtz-Yotz (1991) found that deep pressure applied by foam-padded splints on the arms reduced self-injurious behaviour and self-stimulation in an autistic child.

Calming Clothing Company



Research on autistic children indicates that they prefer proximal sensory stimulation such as touching, tasting, and smelling to distal sensory stimulation of hearing and seeing (Kootz et al. 1981). Autistic children will often seek out deep pressure sensations. 





At various lecture meetings of parents of autistic individuals, parents have reported to me various types of pressure-seeking behaviour of their offspring, such as wrapping arms and legs in elastic bandages, sleeping under many blankets even during warm weather, and getting under mattresses. 



In my case, l used to crawl under sofa cushions and have my sister sit on them. A high functioning autistic woman stated, "I need heavy blankets on me to sleep well, or else my muscles won't calm down."


Grandin T., 1992, 'Calming Effects of Deep Touch Pressure in Patients with Autistic Disorder, College Students, and Animals', Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, Vol. 2, No. 1



Calming Clothing
has been observed by parents and Occupational Therapists to have a very positive, calming and centering effect on children who experience sensory processing disorder (such as those experienced by children with Autism). It has been observed to have an equally positive effect for children with low muscle tone such as those experienced by Rett Syndrome.



Calming Clothing is available here






References
Grandin T., 1992, 'Calming Effects of Deep Touch Pressure in Patients with Autistic Disorder, College Students, and Animals', Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, Vol. 2, No. 1
Ayres J.A, 1979, 'Sensory Integration and the Child.', Western Psychological Services.
King L, 1989, 'Facilitating Neurodevelopment', Autism Society of America, Conference Proceedings, pp 117-120.