If your loved one is recovering from a stroke, they're going to need your help. This is particularly true if you're going to be part of the recovery team. You and your loved one are going to experience a wide array of emotions, including fear, anger, frustration, and maybe even a bit of doubt – in the recovery process, or in your ability to handle the changes. Don't give up. Use the tips provided here to help your loved one recover from their stroke.
Strokes often come on without any warning at all. They can be quick and devastating. Unfortunately, the recovery process isn't always as quick. In fact, the process can take weeks, months, and even years. The most important thing you can remember during your loved one's recovery is that it will all require patience. Be grateful for the progress that comes quickly, and be patient with the progress that takes time.
Avoid Creating Dependence
While your loved one is recovering from a stroke, you'll want to provide them with as much assistance as possible. As you assist your loved one, it's important that you avoid creating dependence. Allow your loved one to attempt self-help before you step in, even if it appears that they're having difficulty. Difficult tasks don't always equate to impossible tasks. Give your loved one a chance to tackle those difficult tasks until it's apparent that they need your assistance – this time. Continue to allow your loved one to attempt those difficult tasks until they're finally able to accomplish them.
After a stroke, your loved one is going to need exercise. They may not have the strength to tackle strenuous exercise programs for a while. However, with some assistance, they can participate in some form of physical activity. If they're able to walk, take them for a leisurely stroll around the yard or to a neighborhood park. If they're not able to walk, turn on some music and join them in dancing to their favorite tunes using their arms and hands. As they continue to gain strength, add new exercises to their daily routine.
Reach Out for Help
Caring for a loved one who's had a stroke can be stressful. Don't be afraid to reach out for help. Join a local community outreach group that will help you adjust to your changing lifestyle. This is particularly important if you're the child who has suddenly stepped into the parental caregiver role. It's also important that you reach out to your loved one's medical team or a telestroke program, like Telespecialists. They can help you understand the treatment and care that your loved one will require as they recover from their stroke.