Assistive relief tool for special psychological symptom groups during pandemic - pressure clothing design based on virtual contact principles
Authors: Yunjuan Liu
Abstract: During the COV-19 pandemic, some special populations - groups of early childhood and people with autism, among others - faced more profound challenges than the common people. The lack of real physical contact such as embracing greatly affected the effectiveness of development, psychiatric treatment and other processes for these populations. This study aims to develop clothing with appropriate contact pressure based on the contact comfort principle of psychology, provide a type of pressure clothing that can relieve the wearer’s tension by simulating hugging, alleviating the lack of physical contact for early childhood education and special education groups during the pandemic. First, the elementary requirements of clothing design are attained using a questionnaire survey and test method. The analysis revealed that clothing should fulfil the four requirements of pressure comfort, fabric softness, wearing and taking off comfort, and visual beauty. Second, we realized the performance requirements in the fabric and accessories, style design, structure design, and functional design. Finally, the product experience is proposed through a fitting, and the reasonable opinions were fed back to the product design to enhance the functionality of clothing. The research shows that clothing can simulate hugging and can ease the loneliness of the wearer. This study can be used as a good tool to assist during the pandemic for early childhood education and special psychological symptom groups, as well as a broader group of people living alone at home, to play an adjunctive treatment and loneliness relief functions.
Keywords: Virtual contact, pressure clothing, adjunctive treatment
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