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Holistic Self-Care for Rehabilitation Experienced by Thai Buddhist Trauma Patients in Areas of Political and Social Unrest

Songwathana, Praneed PhD; Watanasiriwanich, Wachiraya MSc; Kitrungrote, Luppana PhD

doi: 10.1097/JTN.0000000000000013

This study describes the meaning and practice of holistic self-care for rehabilitation among Thai Buddhist trauma patients living in areas of political unrest where acts of terrorism occur. Eleven Thai Buddhist trauma patients were selected as specified. The data were collected by in-depth interviews between November 2011 and April 2012, and analyzed using the Van Manen method.

Those interviewed described “holistic self-care for rehabilitation” as learning (1) to acquire a new life and (2) to bear the increased demands of care as a chronic disease. Health care responses fell into 3 categories: (1) improving physical self-sufficiency and rehabilitation by increasing muscle strength, pain management, and pressure sores; (2) improving psychological well-being by applying positive thinking, making an effort to live independently, and following a set of religious practices; and (3) finding harmony in life through caution and a willingness to adjust one's lifestyle. Although the participants seemed to adapt well to their new lifestyles, extensive support from health care professionals was necessary. This study promotes better understanding of the holistic health care experiences the survivors of trauma have as a result of an unstable political situation that includes aspects of social unrest and terrorism.

Department of Surgical Nursing, Faculty of Nursing (Dr Songwathana), Faculty of Nursing (Ms Watanasiriwanich), and Department of Surgical Nursing, Faculty of Nursing, Prince of Songkla University, Thailand (Dr Kitrungrote).

Correspondence: Praneed Songwathana, PhD, Faculty of Nursing, Prince of Songkla University, Hatyai, Songkhla, Thailand 90112 (

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Copyright © 2013 by the Society of Trauma Nurses.