Our son Tristan has experienced many hours of physical, occupational, and speech therapy to get where he is today. He progressed so far because of his hard work and determination. Earlier this past Spring, his occupational therapist (OT) asked if we would be interested in a compression garment for Tristan. She used a compression vest with Tristan in therapy, and she said she thought he performed and focused much better while he wore it. Tristan suffers from poor core muscle stabilization and weakness. She said when he wore his vest he could do exercises that without the vest were impossible for any short length of time. His OT suggested we purchase from a company called Stabilizing Pressure Input Orthosis or SPIO™, and purchase for Tristan one of their compression vests. My husband and I decided it could not hurt, and we are parents who will try about anything to help our son.
What exactly is a compression garment and why would a child like Tristan benefit from it? The vest we purchased from SPIO™ is made of a breathable Lycra-blend fabric, which compresses the body and is comfortable to wear. Tristan’s particular vest fastens at the shoulders and between the legs, and also along both sides of the back. The vest provides pressure for the core, which enables the energy the brain uses to stabilize his core to be used in other areas of the body. As a result, the brain does not have to work as hard stimulating core muscles, and allows the child the ability to do exercises, fine motor skills, and other tasks more effectively.
Tristan calls his vest his “Hug”, and he loves it. When Tristan wears the vest, he is able to do more physical movements and exercises than he could before he had the vest. As an example, he is able to hold a pencil much better when wearing his vest than without it. For Tristan, this simple task we take for granted was extremely hard, and even when he could do it correctly his writing or drawing of or within lines was poor. With his vest, he is able to hold the pencil better, and there is vast improvement in his writing and drawing abilities. Tristan also said the vest made him feel safe, which makes sense if the core was more stable and gives a sense of security. We also noticed an improvement in his speech and behavior.
As a mother of a special needs son, I greatly recommend the SPIO™ compression garments. The garment washes well, and Tristan’s vest still looks new, even after nearly a year from purchase. The folks at the company are very helpful and nice to talk with about any of your questions or concerns. They have very fast shipping service also.
If you have further questions or interest in the SPIO™ compression vest, please check out their FAQs page. It provides many more details, and you can also see their other products besides the vest like what Tristan wears in the photograph. They also have a Facebook page.