Sensory-based treatment methods are commonly used by occupational therapists and others working with individual with ADHD and ASD (Wan Yunus, Liu, Bissett, & Penkala, 2015). Weighted vests or weighted blankets are popular sensory-based interventions used with people with these conditions. Weighted vests and weighted blankets are widely reported to have various benefits and positive outcomes with children with these conditions (Shulman, 2018). They are thought of as providing deep pressure that is reported to help clients self-regulate, diminish episodes of maladaptive behavior and anxiety or stress, and improve attention, sleep, and mood (Shulman, 2018). A series of systematic reviews have previously been performed to assess the level and quality of evidence of the available literature regarding weighted vests and weighted blankets. These previous reviews have all concluded that weighted vests and weighted blankets did not have efficacy and that limited evidence currently exists that examines weighted vests and weighted blankets (Case-Smith, Weaver, & Fristad, 2014; Taylor, Spriggs, Jones Ault, Flanagan, & Sartini, 2017; Wan Yunus, Liu, Bissett, & Penkala, 2015; Watling & Hauer, 2015). Additionally, all four of these systematic reviews were of high quality of evidence (Case- Smith, Weaver, & Fristad, 2014; Taylor, Spriggs, Jones Ault, Flanagan, & Sartini, 2017; Wan Yunus, Liu, Bissett, & Penkala, 2015; Watling & Hauer, 2015). However, these systematic reviews focused on one specific population or one specific outcome, a more general systematic review to understand the overall efficacy of weighted vests and blankets has yet to be completed. To fill this gap, a systematic review was conducted to answer the following question: To what degree are weighted vests and weighted blankets efficacious when utilized for people with ASD or ADHD?
Denny, E.; Folkes, W.; Ghattas, I.; Kaufmann, H.; Williams, H.; and Potvin, Marie-Christine, "A Systematic Review of the Efficacy of Weighted Vests and Blankets on People with ASD or ADHD" (2018). Student Papers, Posters & Projects. Paper 20.