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Time use following a severe traumatic brain injury
journal contributionposted on 28.05.2019, 00:00 authored by D Winkler, Carolyn UnsworthCarolyn Unsworth, S Sloan
Recent outcome studies have found that a significant number of people have limited opportunity for meaningful occupation following severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). The aim of this study was to compare the time use of 37 people more than three years post injury with time use in the general Australian population. This time use study was part of a broader research project, which examined community integration and factors that lead to successful community integration. The results of this study were that the TBI sample spent less time in employment related activities and more time on personal care than the general population. They also spent more time alone and less time with family. The TBI sample spent as much time in the community as their peers, however they were less involved in shared occupation. Although this group of people had received comprehensive rehabilitation services following their injury, they experienced decreased opportunities for meaningful occupation and changes in social contact several years post injury. Comparisons of the sample with people who are not employed suggest that unemployment is only one of the factors that contribute to the under-occupation of people with TBI. The time use data collected provides a window on lifestyle changes and indicates that severe TBI has a significant negative impact on people’s level of participation and well-being.