Occupational Therapy in Mental Health
Volume: 24 Issue: 1
Copyright Date: 2008
Exploring the Safety and Therapeutic Effects
of Deep Pressure Stimulation Using a Weighted Blanket
Brian Mullen BS, Tina Champagne MEd, OTR/L, Sundar Krishnamurty PhD, Debra Dickson APRN, BC, Robert X. Gao PhD
This paper presents the results of a concurrent, nested, mixed methods exploratory study on the safety and effectiveness of the use of a 30 lb weighted blanket with a convenience sample of 32 adults. Safety is investigated measuring blood pressure, pulse rate, and pulse oximetry, and effectiveness by electrodermal activity (EDA), the State Trait Anxiety Inventory-10 and an exit survey.
The results reveal that the use of the 30 lb weighted blanket, in the lying down position, is safe as evidenced by the vital sign metrics. Data obtained on effectiveness reveal 33% demonstrated lowering in EDA when using the weighted blanket, 63% reported lower anxiety after use, and 78% preferred the weighted blanket as a calming modality.
The results of this study will be used to form the basis for subsequent research on the therapeutic influence of the weighted blanket with adults during an acute inpatient mental health admission.