Category Archives: Life after Stroke

Why Do Second Strokes Happen?

By | All about Stroke, Life after Stroke, Stroke Prevention | No Comments

One stroke is a difficult occurrence to face, but many stroke survivors find that they end up having secondary strokes. Often, these strokes are more severe and can take more functioning away. Fortunately, you can prevent a secondary stroke by following the orders that your doctor has given you. If you ignore healthy suggestions, then the possibility of a secondary stroke is very high. Usually, it is unhealthy living that leads to a stroke in the first place, and by learning how to take care of yourself better, you can prevent further damage. If you’ve had an ischemic stroke, or a stroke caused by a clot, you are more likely to have a secondary stroke. Those who have had hemorrhagic strokes are not as at risk because a bleed in the brain is not likely to happen again. However, ignoring your blood pressure can lead to small bleeds in the brain that can lead to secondary strokes. You should be concerned about secondary strokes because they are so common. Take the time to talk to your doctor about the rate of secondary strokes and what actions you can take to prevent them.   Failure to Control Blood Pressure and Cholesterol…

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Visual Impairments Following a Stroke

By | All about Stroke, Life after Stroke | No Comments

Stroke causes a variety of symptoms, and most people know the main signs, such as paralysis, difficulty talking, and drooping face. One area you may not realize that also suffers from a stroke is vision. It makes sense, though: your eyes are just another set of nerves that are managed by the brain. If the part of the brain that makes sense of the impulse is injured by a stroke, then vision will be impacted. Sometimes, it is hard to tell that a stroke patient has a visual impairment because the symptoms are subtle. Very rarely does vision loss present as complete blindness, and visual impacts are not seen with all strokes. Most visual disturbances are in the broad categories of some visual loss and problems with visual perception. Although complete blindness is rare, partial blindness is one of the hallmark visual complications after a stroke. If you or your loved one had a stroke and are concerned over visual side effects, speak to your neurologist. They will be able to test visual fields to ensure that the eye and their corresponding nerves are working properly.   How a Stroke Affects Your Vision Stroke can affect your vision in many…

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Utensil Adaptations for Independent Eating

By | Life after Stroke | No Comments

Most stroke survivors strive for independence regardless of their limitations after their incident. Being independent is a great way to combat depression, feel good about yourself, and take some of the pressure off your caregiver. Even if you can only do a few things by yourself, it is important to do those things and to try to do as many other skills as possible. Eating by yourself is often considered an essential exercise for most stroke survivors. Besides bathroom skills, eating by yourself is usually at the top of the list. However, eating with one arm paralyzed or facial droop can make the act challenging. You may be surprised to know that several medical supply companies have developed specialized tools to help stroke survivors gain this piece of independence. Your best source of information for modifications in this area is your occupational therapist. They can help you develop the skills to perform the activities of daily living, such as eating. As a result, they are a wealth of information for the stroke survivor and caregiver. If your therapist has not already suggested the following modifications, it may be beneficial to mention them, emphasizing your desire for independent eating.   Tabletops…

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Ways to Socialize after a Stroke

By | Life after Stroke | No Comments

Having a stroke can be isolating.  If you have a deficit in speech or trouble getting around, it is easy to just stay in the house and not socialize.  In fact, many stroke survivors find that they get depressed, and this keeps them from getting around people.  Some are very embarrassed by the way their body behaves now – such as being unable to control bowel or bladder and the need for assistive equipment – and this will keeps a stroke survivor chained to their homes.

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Hobbies that are Stroke Survivor Friendly

By | Life after Stroke, Support and help after Stroke | No Comments

When you’ve had a stroke, you may feel like you can’t do anything.  Instead of focusing on what you can do, you may tend to focus only on your deficits and the things you are unable to do.  Unfortunately, this can lead to depression, withdrawal, and sometimes thoughts of suicide.  While your medications and doctor appointments are vitally important, you should not ignore the leisure activities that are going to help you feel more like your old self.  The opportunities for hobbies are limitless, even if you have severe deficits.  With some modifications, many old hobbies and new interests can be shaped to your needs.

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Grieving the Loss of Function after a Stroke

By | Caregiving, Life after Stroke | No Comments

Everyone knows you go through a grief process when you lose a loved one.  In fact, most people know that there are five stages to the process, the first being denial.  What many don’t know or understand is that grieving is a process we go through for many life circumstances.  For instance, losing a job, getting a divorce, or sending the kids off to college can elicit grieving feelings in the person who feels the loss.

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Considerations when Adapting Your Home for a Stroke Survivor

By | Life after Stroke | No Comments

The shock of a stroke can leave patients and family members reeling.  From the initial worry about death to the slow process of accepting limitations, the road to “normalcy” seems to be pockmarked with large and hazardous sinkholes.  Fortunately, many stroke survivors do not immediately return to the home, and this can give family members an opportunity to adjust the environment to suit their new needs.  Whether your loved one is able to head back to modified independence or they are moving into your house, certain considerations should be addressed before they arrive home from rehabilitation.

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Quick Guide to Post Stroke Therapies

By | Life after Stroke, Stroke Treatments | No Comments

The first few days after a stroke are confusing enough.  From the initial worry about surviving the incident to learning how to deal with new limitations, it is completely understandable to be overwhelmed in the first few weeks following such a life-changing incident.  Once you or a loved one is out of the hospital, you will face a bewildering array of therapies that aim to increase the functional abilities after the stroke.  For someone who has no background in medicine, the different types of therapies may not readily indicate what exactly they are supposed to do for the stroke survivor.

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Stroke Doesn’t Define You: What You Can Learn from Janine Shepard

By | Life after Stroke, Support and help after Stroke | No Comments

Stroke certainly affects your physical and mental abilities, but many patients are unprepared for the impact it has on their morale, their attitude, their soul. A trip to the bookstore or idle browsing at Amazon will reveal countless inspirational stories and strategies for overcoming the hurdles life can sometimes present, but very few focus on the particular problems a stroke survivor must face. Fortunately, the story of Janine Shepard is one that transcends medical particulars and speaks to the heart of what it is to face physical challenges and overcome them in triumph.

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Mirror Therapy after a Stroke

By | Life after Stroke, Stroke Treatments | One Comment

Mirror therapy may sound like a funny treatment for the deficits following a stroke, but recent thought seems to indicate that it may be beneficial. The mind is a highly changeable, plastic organ. This means that the brain can adapt to the deficits caused by the stroke. It accomplishes this task by recruiting other areas of the brain to compensate for those functions lost in the damaged area.

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