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Predictors of positive psychological wellbeing for informal caregivers of an individual with a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

Furniss, Callum (2020) Predictors of positive psychological wellbeing for informal caregivers of an individual with a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Doctoral thesis, Staffordshire University.

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Abstract or description

Paper one is a literature review of 14 studies on the impact of alexithymia on various factors in a TBI population. The findings suggest that alexithymia is associated with cognition (particularly verbal ability), emotional difficulties (e.g. anxiety, depression, suicidal ideation), behavioural difficulties (aggression), and social cognition (lower empathy and poorer emotion recognition in others). Across studies, there was some initial indication that difficulty in identifying and describing one’s feelings, in particular, may be related to emotional problems, whereas an externally oriented thinking style appeared to be most strongly related to impairments in social cognition. The main limitations of the studies related to the representativeness of the samples, the potential issues in using self-report measures in this population and the inability for studies to establish causality between variables. Potential implications for clinical practice are discussed. Paper two is a cross-sectional empirical study on the predictors of subjective caregiver burden and positive psychological wellbeing for caregivers of an individual with TBI. A total of 84 caregivers completed seven validated questionnaires online. The results indicated that higher levels of perceived social support and positive appraisals of the caregiving role, and lower levels of maladaptive coping predicted lower subjective burden and increased psychological wellbeing. Further, lower functioning of the care-recipient was also found to predict higher subjective caregiver burden, whereas higher levels of hope and adaptive coping additionally predicted higher psychological wellbeing. The findings suggest that there are several resources that caregivers may be able to draw upon to improve their overall wellbeing. Paper three is an executive summary of the empirical research undertaken. It is written is an accessible manner and is aimed primarily at caregivers, but also anyone who may be interested in the research. The method, results, conclusions and recommendations based on the research are outlined in this report.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty: School of Life Sciences and Education > Psychology
Depositing User: Library STORE team
Date Deposited: 27 Oct 2020 15:38
Last Modified: 27 Oct 2020 15:38

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