Counselling and spinal cord injury : the role of counselling in the treatment of spinal cord injury

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Ryan, Linda
Issue Date
BA Counselling and Psychotherapy
Dublin Business School
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Spinal Cord Injury is the result of a trauma to the Spinal Cord. It can be complete or incomplete in its measure. It can result in a person living their life in a wheelchair with the help of a ventilator in the worst-case scenario. Research highlights the physical, social, practical and to a lesser degree the psychological affects of such an injury. Physical education and trainings injuries make up 11.6% of all SCI and rugby injuries make up 2.4% of that statistic. (Apparalyzed, 2000). This research project looks at the psychological aspects of experiencing a SCI and explores why someone with such an injury would engage in therapy. As this study was based on rugby players in Ireland, the population consisted of men ranging in age from early 30s to mid 50s. The level of injury was both complete and incomplete and the time since the injury was between 3.5 and 28 years ago. The study used qualitative methods using semi-structured interviews. The findings of the study confirm previous research in some areas and contradict research in others. The findings reveal that counselling would benefit those dealing with this injury providing the needs of the individual are taken into consideration. The study concludes that those with SCI believe counselling to be beneficial to the individual.