Considering Resilience in the Rehabilitation of People With Traumatic Disabilities

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ObjectivesTo provide discussion on (a) the construct of resilience in relation to people with traumatic injuries, (b) potential research directions, and (c) reliable and valid measures of resilience.ConclusionsResilience as a construct is part of the “positive psychology” movement that focuses on identifying the strengths of an individual when faced with adversity rather than on his or her weaknesses (e.g., depression, anxiety). Although a universal definition does not exist, resilience is generally considered a multidimensional construct consisting of behaviors, thoughts, and actions, which can be learned overtime. Consequently, there is a growing body of literature examining resilience in different populations (e.g., children, older adults). However, there is a paucity of literature examining the resilience of individuals who have experienced a traumatic injury. Potentially, resilience and rehabilitation is a very fruitful line of research due to the extreme adversity individuals are faced with postinjury when dealing with the trauma of the injury and resultant impairments.

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