Music therapy in an acquired brain injury rehabilitation centre: exploring a therapeutic relationship with a service user with traumatic brain injury
There is a growing evidence base concerning music therapy and acquired brain injury, and music therapy and acquired brain injury in rehabilitation settings. Research into this area has broadly focused on the use of music therapy to promote functional improvements in aspects of disabilities, conditions, disorders and impairments stemming from acquired brain injury. Current literature highlights a need for further qualitative investigation regarding what music therapy may offer as a form of emotional intervention to acquired brain injured individuals in rehabilitation settings, focusing on the significance of the therapeutic relationship within the context of a secure, residential, and medicalised environment. This project explores a therapeutic relationship with a traumatically brain injured service user within an acquired brain injury rehabilitation centre. The nature of acquired brain injury, associated consequential characteristics, and health implications for those affected are investigated within the project and research concerning music therapy and acquired brain injury, and music therapy and acquired brain injury in rehabilitation settings is also reviewed. A hermeneutic phenomenological approach and single case study method was adopted for the project to explore and present aspects of the therapeutic relationship and investigate what music therapy offered a service user within a rehabilitation setting. The process of data analysis was conducted through an adapted version of Therapeutic Narrative Analysis. This project highlights the unique potential of music therapy within a goal orientated and outcome focused setting, and the significance of a therapeutic relationship in promoting self-expression, self-identity, self-agency, creativity, and emotional wellbeing of a service user with traumatic brain injury living in a restricted environment.