Weighted Blanket for Asperger's Syndrome
Asperger Syndrome (AS) is a neurobiological disorder that is one of the subtypes of autism. People with Aspergers are generally considered to be "high-functioning", with the symptoms ranging from mild to severe. This condition is three times more likely to affect males than females.
While a person with Aspergers shares many characteristics with someone normally associted with autism, those with the former do not experience the same language and cognitive delays and learning difficulties that the latter has to live with.
What Are The Symptoms Of Aspergers Syndrome?
Aspergers-linked behaviors tend to become more apparent when a child starts school and interacts with other kids.
Children with aspergers exhibit the following symptoms:
- Difficulty reading body language and social cues (i.e., facial expression, eye contact, body posture, hand gestures)
- Difficulty in carrying a conversation and knowing when it's their turn to speak
- Extreme difficulty relating to children their age (which is why AS children are more comfortable with adults than with someone in their age group)
- Inflexibility with changes in routines
- Passion for maps, globes, roads, and routes
- Superior rote memorization ability
- Prefers to speak in a formal manner with highfalutin words
- Extrememly literal when it comes to interpretation of language
- Extensive vocabulary, as they usually begin reading at an early age
- Inability to recognize speech patterns, tones, and accents that affect the meaning of a sentence
- Sensitivity to loud noises, clothing textures, odors, or lights
- Difficulty with playing games or any activity that requires imagination
People with AS might obsessively engage in routines and display an unusual sensitivity to sensory stimuli, such as being irritated by a noise that no one else can hear, or being extremely picky with the type of material their clothing is made of.
In general, Aspergers syndrome still allows its sufferers to live relatively normal, incident-free lives. However, people with Aspergers have a tendency to appear somewhat immature and may give off an odd or eccentric vibe.
Unlike those with autism, people with Aspergers don't have cognitive development delays, and even display average or sometimes above-average intelligence.
How Is Aspergers Syndrome Treated?
There is no cure for this condition—a child with Aspergers grows up to be an adult with Aspergers. But their situation doesn't stop them from leading happy, fulfilling lives. A good education and a loving, supportive family give them a leg up and increase their chances of assimilating.
They benefit from the a combination of the following:
- Social skills training
- Language therapy
- Behavioral and cognitive therapy
- Sensory Integration Training
The final item on the list, Sensory Integration Training, involves occupational therapy (i.e., desensitizing a child to the stimuli that he is sensitive to). Typically, occupational therapists use different techniques such as Deep Pressure Therapy in order to initiate a sense of calm in their patients.
This may involve squishing the patient in between two bean bag chairs, or sitting on them while they are lying on the floor. Or better yet, they use a therapeutic weighted blanket in order to apply equal pressure throughout the patient's body.
The root causes of behavioral disfunctions that cause people to lash out are anxiety and insomnia, both of which make the patient feel on edge and pushing them further to the brink of helplessness.
These are usually treated with drugs and therapy, but now with the advent of more studies being published about sleep and psychiatric disorders, we may have found the solution. And it's more simple than we ever thought.
A weighted blanket is one of these tools that have been proven to be effective in inducing calmness without using sedatives or drugs. This blanket employs the aforementioned DPT to relax both the body and mind, and make the patient feel safe and comfortable.
Microbeads suspended in polyester are responsible for the weight, which is distributed throughout the blanket in 6" pockets. The machine-washable cover is made of a soft, cuddly, minky fabric that gives an added level of comfort.
A weighted blanket imitates a warm hug, reducing blood pressyre and releasing the hormone Oxytocin into the bloodstream. It is sometimes called the "love hormone" because the oxytocin levels in our bodies increase when we hug or kiss our loved ones. This hormone regulates social interaction and sexual reproduction, and is involved in maternal-infant bonding and milk release as well as in feelings of empathy, generosity, and orgasm.