The unique characteristics of the Global War on Terror have increased the number of troops returning with combat-related disabilities (CRD). Veterans with these CRD experience a variety of negative impacts on their functioning. Not only are the veterans' lives being negatively impacted by CRD, the families of veterans with CRD are also being affected. Therapeutic recreation (TR) programs are currently being used to reduce the negative impacts of CRD for veterans and their families. This study examined the influences of TR programs for veterans with CRD and their significant others (SOs) based on the ICF components of participation, body structure, function, and environmental factors. This study also examined the perceptions of veterans and their SOs about the benefits and important components of TR programs. The influences of the TR programs were examined by using a pretest, posttest, and one month follow-up to determine the impacts to the veterans' and SOs' PTSD symptoms, depression symptoms, family functioning and family recreation involvement along with the veterans' community reintegration. In addition, eight interviews were conducted with participants of the TR programs to determine the benefits and important components. There was a significant decrease in the veterans PTSD symptoms, the SOs depression symptoms, and trending towards an increase in family recreation involvement. The benefits of participation were identified as social reconnection, distraction, positive emotions, increased competence, and learning new skills; whereas, the important components were staff and a safe environment.
|Advisor:||Puymbroeck, Marieke Van, Piatt, Jennifer A.|
|Commitee:||McCormick, Bryan, Rydell, Robert J.|
|Department:||Health, Physical Education and Recreation|
|School Location:||United States -- Indiana|
|Source:||DAI-A 75/02(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Public health, Kinesiology, Military studies, Recreation|
|Keywords:||Adaptive sports, Combat-related disabilities, Disability, International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF), Significant others, Therapeutic recreation, Veterans|
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