Stroke is a serious illness that comes on suddenly and requires rapid adaptation by the whole family. Part of the senior population that suffers a stroke needs a long period of rehabilitation before they regain their independence, while another part never fully recovers and needs continuous support.
Simple activities like eating, dressing, cleaning, can be difficult both for the senior relative who suffered the stroke, who finds himself with reduced mobility and memory, and for the family by having to readjust the whole family dynamic.
Stroke results from damage to brain cells due to the absence of oxygen and nutrients as a result of:
- a flood of blood resulting from a ruptured artery (hemorrhagic stroke);
- or, resulting from a blockage of blood flow (ischemic stroke).
“Stroke is considered a medical emergency and should be treated as soon as possible in order to minimize brain damage. This is the leading cause of death and disability in Portugal, and in the world it is estimated that 1 in 6 people will have a stroke.”
The main symptoms of stroke are:
- Alteration/weakness in the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body;
- Difficulty with speech, language, sight, or movement;
- Severe headache with no apparent cause.
After stroke, it becomes essential:
- Start rehabilitation as soon as possible, using specialized professionals, at home, in clinics or in Nursing Homes and Senior Residences, who will help the senior and the family members to cope with the whole situation;
- Encourage the senior family member to perform the exercises taught by the physical therapist, not only during the physical therapy sessions but also during the day;
- Give autonomy to the elderly, so that they can reestablish their self-confidence;
- Be aware of the most common cognitive problems after a stroke, such as anxiety and depression, seeking help from a qualified professional
Encourage and praise any improvement/achievement, no matter how small, of the elderly relative, trying as much as possible not to exert pressure on him/her.
In summary, the experience of caring for an elderly relative who has suffered a stroke can be very intense and difficult, and it is common for many doubts to arise regarding the disease and the appropriate care for this situation. Being informed and seeking professional help is the best way to help the elderly relative.
The vast majority of Senior Residences and Old People’s Homes have professionals who provide a complete stroke rehabilitation service, providing an improvement in quality of life and well-being for all concerned!
Contact us by submitting your request or contact us at 919992898 or [email protected]