A spinal cord injury (SCI) is damage anywhere along the spinal cord, usually from an accident or other trauma. Nearly half of people with SCI experience recurring nerve pain in areas below their injury. This pain may not go away, even with medications. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a procedure that may reduce nerve pain in people with SCI by “resetting” brain areas that react to pain. In tDCS, a weak electrical current is applied to the scalp using two electrodes on... Read this article
Research In Focus: A Weekly Digest of New Research from the NIDILRR Community
Research In Focus is a weekly publication featuring reader-friendly summaries of the latest research from NIDILRR-funded projects. Each installment presents you with an overview of a recently-published NIDILRR-funded study, highlighting important findings, and discussing implications or directions for future research. This could be a starting point to learn more about the intervention, technology, or program. We hand-select the articles from our diverse library collections, aiming to broadly cover interesting research in many areas of disability, various types of intervention, and a wide range of age spectrum from early childhood to aging with and into disability. To be alerted to new articles, sign up for our weekly email newsletter News and Notes from the NIDILRR Community and Beyond! These articles are also available in Spanish.
People with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) have lifelong conditions that may affect their ability to communicate, learn, or make decisions. Historically, adults with IDD have often received services in job or recreation facilities that are segregated or sheltered, where they may only interact with other people with disabilities and support staff, rather than an integrated setting where they may interact with people with and without disabilities.
Recent policy... Read this article
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that one in five children or youth may at some point have a serious emotional, mental, or behavioral disorder such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder or conduct disorder. They may receive services from clinicians, social workers, and other mental health professionals. “Wraparound” is a comprehensive, team-based program providing individualized services to children and youth with serious mental health conditions and available... Read this article
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is brain damage resulting from an external force, such as a fall or car accident. TBI can be mild, moderate or severe. People with TBI may have trouble with social problem-solving, which is the process of interpreting social cues and responding appropriately in social situations. People may react to social problems either adaptively (by approaching the problem in a positive frame of mind, thinking through possible solutions, and carefully choosing a solution),... Read this article
Over 2 million Americans experience a traumatic brain injury (TBI) each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A TBI is lasting brain damage from a blow to the head such as from a fall or car accident. TBI can be mild, moderate, or severe. Some people with TBI may develop mental or emotional challenges after their injury. Two of the most common challenges are depression (including feeling chronically sad or down, and losing interest or pleasure in doing things),... Read this article
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is damage to the brain resulting from an external force, such as a fall or car accident. TBI can be mild, moderate, or severe. People with TBI, like people without disabilities, may benefit from online resources such as support groups, discussion boards, or social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, to expand their support networks and feel more connected. However, past studies have found that people with TBI may be less likely to use the Internet than... Read this article
People with serious mental illnesses (SMI) such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or other psychotic disorders may periodically experience mental health crises or emergencies. During these crises, they may be unable to make treatment decisions or express their treatment wishes. A psychiatric advance directive (PAD) is a legal document that details a person’s preferences for medical treatment during a mental health crisis. Similar to a medical advance directive or living will, a PAD may... Read this article
Stroke is the leading cause of long-term disability in the United States, according to the National Stroke Association. A stroke occurs when a blood vessel in the brain either bursts or becomes blocked. Stroke can be mild, moderate, or severe. Stroke can cause problems with movement, speech, or mental functions due to lasting brain damage. People who have had a stroke may face challenges with returning to work, independent living, or social activities after a stroke. In a recent NIDILRR-... Read this article
People with physical disabilities may need to engage in ongoing self-care in order to stay healthy. For example, people with physical disabilities may need to take medications to improve symptoms and stabilize their health. People with spina bifida (SB) or spinal cord injury (SCI) may need to check their skin regularly to detect wounds or sores before they get worse. Mobile health (mHealth) applications are smartphone apps that can help people with physical disabilities keep track of and... Read this article
A concussion is a mild brain injury that may occur after a fall or sudden impact to the head, such as during contact sports. It can cause symptoms such as headaches, confusion, or trouble concentrating, which can last for up to three months after injury. It is important for rehabilitation staff, from physicians and therapists to athletic trainers, to know how to accurately diagnose a concussion, how long it typically lasts, and what advice or therapy is appropriate to help individuals manage... Read this article