Psychoeducation involves providing education, information and knowledge about a neurological diagnosis. It is very important in helping service users to better understand their diagnosis and become accustomed to living with it. Psychoeducation can be regarded as a form of trauma therapy, beneficial to an individual following a life-altering event such as a brain injury, after which they may struggle with managing their emotions and feelings of grief for the life they know and have lost.
Psychoeducation encompasses the physical, emotional and behavioural factors that persist after a person has suffered a brain injury. By providing information and support about symptoms, such as pain, loss of skills and independence, and reduced emotion regulation, this helps the individual to challenge their negative perception of self. This in turn helps them to feel empowered to harness their strengths and recognise their limitations so they can lead a healthy and fulfilling life alongside their brain injury.
By engaging with psychoeducation, a service user has the opportunity to learn skills and coping strategies, which contribute to their overall rehabilitation potential.
Assistant Psychologists at Richardson Care consistently offer psychoeducation to the service users on both a structured and an ad hoc basis.
Helping Bob to live with his brain injury
Bob* is a resident at The Coach House, whose brain injury significantly affects his memory and functional skills. He experiences frustration due to loss of skills, and his ability to manage his emotions is also impacted as a consequence of his injury, resulting in displays of risk behaviours. In addition, memory deficits can cause him distress as he is often unable to recall his injury, nor the reason for being in his current placement. Consequently he may experience a decline in his mood and mental state, which presents as heightened anger, suspicion of others and withdrawal from therapeutic interventions.
Therefore, psychoeducation is a particularly crucial element of Bob’s care plan. He needs frequent reassurance and information about his brain injury to enable him to employ coping mechanisms.
The Assistant Psychologists also work to support the care staff who are with Bob and other service users during all hours of the day and night. They provide education and guidance to the care team about the interventions and how to deliver them in the absence of the Assistant Psychologist. This collaborative working supports Bob’s overall wellbeing and helps him to manage his behaviours.
Psychoeducation is just one element of a multi-faceted care plan to support Bob in his brain injury rehabilitation. A care plan is designed to meet each individual’s needs and is reviewed on a regular basis. It may include other elements of psychological support, psychiatric support, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, daily living skills, participation in community activities and music enrichment activity.
For more information, contact our Admissions and Referrals Team on 01604 791071 or complete our online referral form.
*We have changed the name of the service user to protect his identity.