The challenging behaviours of patients with acquired brain Injury can be managed better when carers use a counselling approach

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Rochford, Kevin
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BA (Hons) Counselling and Psychotherapy
Dublin Business School
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Background: Having had first hand experience of working with patients with Acquired Brain Injury, the author had recognised the need to bridge the gap between the carer and patient relationship. Also, this research relates to the authors belief that a counselling approach can be, transferable to other aspects of living, and not just confined to the therapy room. Methods: The author aimed to gather carer's thoughts, opinions and attitudes they had about incorporating a counselling approach in their daily involvement with the patient and to see if they could find it useful in dealing with challenging betlaviour. A series of presentations about the Person-Centred approach was given to a group of carers. The author adapted the information to the environment to which the participants (carers) worked in (nursing home), i.e. person-centred become patient-centred. After the presentation, there were recorded feedback sessions as a means of gathering the carer's attitudes to the counselling approach. Finally, carers where asked to complete a questionnaire. This was for the purpose of those who may have felt uncomfortable in speaking or had concerns about there voice being recorded. The questionnaire was designed to assess how the participants understood the 'person-centred' approach, and to evaluate the counselling approach to caring and how it may help to manage challenging behaviour. Results: The majority of carers agree that the counselling approach to caring does help to manage challenging behaviour, this group also believe that training in the Person-Centred approach should be made available to new employees. However, their was some discrepancies in carers answers which suggested that they saw this approach as being limited to only being good for building a caring relationship. Discussion: While the emphasis was on the Person-Centred approach to caring and for managing challenging behaviour, other approaches that operated in contrast to the counselling approach were also addressed. As many carers where in agreement to the counselling approach the way in which this approach can be applied to the patient with. Acquired Brain Injury needed further exploration.