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The Capital Region of Denmark - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
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Hopeful struggling for health: Experiences of participating in computerized cognitive training and aerobic training for persons with stress-related exhaustion disorder

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  • Therese Eskilsson
  • Anncristine Fjellman-Wiklund
  • Elin Ek Malmer
  • Anna Stigsdotter Neely
  • Hanna Malmberg Gavelin
  • Lisbeth Slunga Järvholm
  • Carl-Johan Boraxbekk
  • Maria Nordin
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It is important to understand how people with exhaustion disorder (ED) perceive interventions aiming to facilitate cognitive functioning. Therefore, the overall aim of this study was to explore experiences from persons with ED after participating in a 12-week intervention of either computerized cognitive training or aerobic training. Both interventions were performed in addition to a multimodal rehabilitation programme. Thirteen participants, 11 women and 2 men, were interviewed about pros and cons with participating in the training. The interviews were analysed with Qualitative Content Analysis. The analyses resulted in the theme hopeful struggling for health and the categories support, motivation and sensations. It was hard work recovering from ED. Support from others who are in the same situation, family members, and technology and routines for the training were strongly emphasized as beneficial for recovery. Timing, i.e., matching activities to the rehabilitation programme, getting feedback and perceiving joy in the training were important for motivation. Participants in both interventions experienced positive sensations with improved memory performance, everyday life functioning and increased faith in the prospect of recovery. However, it is important to consider various aspects of support and motivation in both computerized cognitive training and aerobic training to enable participants to pursue their participation.

Original languageEnglish
JournalScandinavian Journal of Psychology
Volume61
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)361-368
Number of pages8
ISSN0036-5564
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020

    Research areas

  • burnout, exercise, Exhaustion disorder, qualitative research, rehabilitation

ID: 59200251