Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):11, 56, 2, 107-116
Study investigated how specifically defined elements of religion and spirituality belief systems affect rehabilitation outcomes after traumatic brain injury (TBI). Religious and spiritual characteristics were measured with the Spiritual Well-Being Scale, a self-report measure that assesses 2 dimensions: a direct personal relationship with God referred to as religious well-being, and the perception that life has a purpose apart from any specifically religious reference, referred to as existential well-being. Participants were 88 adults who sustained a TBI 1 to 20 years earlier and their knowledgeable significant others (SOs). The majority of the participants with brain injury were male (76 percent), African American (75 percent), and Christian (76 percent). TBI participants subjectively reported on their religious/spiritual beliefs and psychosocial resources as well as their current physical and psychological status. SOs reported objective rehabilitation outcomes. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses were used to determine the proportion of variance in outcomes accounted for by demographic, injury related, psychosocial and religious/spiritual variables. The results indicated that religious well-being (a sense of connection to a higher power) was a unique predictor for life satisfaction, distress, and functional ability, whereas public religious practice and existential well-being were not. The findings suggest that specific facets of religious and spiritual belief systems do play direct and unique roles in predicting rehabilitation outcomes whereas religious activity does not.