The touch-pressure technique is a specific protocol used to decrease tactile defensiveness and to promote normal sensory organization. This technique, when applied correctly, gives the nervous system a chance to organize itself. This input may help decrease avoidance behaviors and irritability. It may also help increase ability to engage in activities such as exploring, touching and manipulating objects. It may promote normal sleep/wake patterns, attention to environment and social interactions.
The following techniques are to be initiated and monitored by an Occupational or Physical Therapist who has knowledge of this specific program.
It is designed to be done very 1-1/2 to 2 hours throughout the day, with the exception of when sleeping, for 7 - 14 consecutive days with re-evaluation at that time. However, it may be used less intensely, as determined by the therapist.
Important points of the program are as follows:
1. Only use the brush provided by the therapist.
2. Hold the brush horizontally to avoid scratching the skin. If scratching occurs, discontinue use of brush and ask your therapist for a new one.
3. Apply enough firm pressure so that the bristles of the brush are noted to fold over.
4. Using the brush, apply pressure to the entire surface of the arms and back of the hands. Then quickly brush the surface of the palm.
5. Using the brush, apply pressure to the entire back.
6. Using the brush, apply pressure to the entire surface of the legs and top of feet. Then, quickly brush the soles of the feet.
7. Apply joint compression 10x to shoulders, elbows, wrists and fingers.
8. Apply joint compression 10x to hips, knees and ankles.
9. Never use the brush on stomach, chest or face.
The entire program should take approximately 3 minutes to complete.