Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Stroke Recovery: Tips for Helping Your Loved One Heal

Strokes take place when the blood supply is cut off from the brain, resulting in damage to the areas of the brain that are impacted by the event. Blood flow may be interrupted due to the blockage of an artery or the bursting of a blood vessel, known as a brain hemorrhage. The kind of therapy that is available to seniors who have suffered a stroke depends upon the severity and location of the damage that is caused; however, rehabilitation is the most common way in which medical professionals assist elderly individuals in healing after a stroke.

Setting Realistic Expectations
In terms of your role helping your senior to recover, the first tip to keep in mind is to maintain realistic expectations. The brain is a very resilient organ that can bounce back from many forms of damage, but cutting off the blood supply to certain areas of the brain can result in permanent effects. According to the National Stroke Association:1

  • Recovery with minor permanent damage is expected for 25 percent of stroke victims. 
  • Nearly complete recovery is expected for 10 percent of seniors who suffer from a stroke. 
  • Moderate to severe permanent damage, resulting in the need for special care, is expected for 40 percent of seniors who experience a stroke. 
  • Care in a long-term facility or by a home care professional is necessary for an expected 10 percent of stroke victims. 

After your loved one has a stroke, it is important to speak with their doctor to determine the best rehabilitation strategy and to discuss the expected results of this treatment. Having realistic expectations is essential in measuring your loved one's progress and supporting their needs.

Acting as a Support System
Depending upon the damage that a stroke causes, seniors may require assistance with activities of daily living. From grooming to meal preparation, making certain that your loved one has access to the support that they need is imperative. You might find it best to hire a senior care professional. Elder care providers are trained to offer the help your senior needs while assisting them in maintaining a safe living environment and the highest possible quality of life.

1 http://www.stroke.org/site/PageServer?pagename=REHABT

1 comment:

  1. I've heard that the lack of companionship during mealtime can be a lonely and serious factor of depression for seniors. I want the caretaker that we get to be able to provide good conversation for our grandpa. He loves telling stories and jokes. I just hope that the caretaker can make a meal and spend some quality time with him when the family isn't there.