Introduction to behavioural techniques for rehabilitation of brain-injured adults

  • Ann Goodman-Smith


Behaviour disorders following severe brain injury can prevent rehabilitation. I first learnt this when I was working as a physiotherapist in a specialist neurological unit. It was there that I faced my first patient who had behaviour problems that prevented him from cooperating with physiotherapy. I became interested and remembered reading an article in Physiotherapy about the use of behaviour modification. I re-read it and decided to try and use the basic principles with the patient I was treating. His shouting and screaming behaviour was ignored by walking away, and positive reinforcement was given when he was quiet and cooperative. Having seen some encouraging results with this approach, I moved to work with the first of two teams I have been lucky enough to work with in specialized units. In both units, I have worked as part of a team, putting into practice behavioural programmes for severely brain-injured people [1]. So perhaps it is becoming clear that my background is one of a practitioner in the field of behaviour techniques with brain-injured adults. My background is not one of psychology with a detailed theoretical base to behavioural principles, but rather that of someone who has had experience of putting into practice those theories; this chapter is very much presented from that perspective.


Social Reinforcement Behaviour Disorder Physical Aggression Heterotopic Ossification Positive Reinforcement 
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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1995

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  • Ann Goodman-Smith

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