Dealing with a near one post-stroke
Stroke is a deadly condition that not just destroys the well-being of a person but also of the people surrounding him/ her. In medical terms, a stroke is defined as a sudden cut-down of the blood supply to any part of the brain owing to a blocked artery or internal hemorrhage resulting in partial or permanent damage to the brain functions.
After a stroke, if the individual survives, life gets extremely difficult for them. An almost healthy and active individual before stroke gets transformed into a disabled and bed-ridden person, in most cases, post-stroke. Stroke results in loss of muscle co-ordination in most parts of the body, difficulty in swallowing, speaking and expressing. Sometimes the eyes are also affected as they are also connected to the brain via the optic nerves. The intensity of the disability depends on the part of the brain where the stroke has occurred. In some cases, the blood clots from those particular parts of the brain can be removed by surgical intervention, but in the other cases, surgery might not be possible. The only option there remains medicines and post-stroke rehabilitation which mostly includes physiotherapy, speech therapy, acupuncture, and other such procedures to restore the normal functions of the body, at least to some extent. Now let us discuss some steps related to the care of an individual post-stroke:
1. Hospital stay: Unlike the other diseases, stroke cannot be treated at home by any means. If you notice the symptoms of stroke in your near and dear ones, symptoms such as drooping of the jaw, difficulty in speaking and swallowing, loss of muscle coordination, severe headache, numbness of any part of the body, without wasting a second, take them to the nearest hospital. If some cases the person suffering a stroke might become unconscious and you might need to call for an ambulance. Once in the hospital, the patient will be immediately taken to the ICU and his/ her vitals will be monitored. In most cases, hypertension or excessively high blood pressure is the most common cause of a stroke.
Diabetic, obese, individuals with heart ailments or high cholesterol levels are also more prone to suffer a stroke. The first three hours from the time stroke has occurred is considered to be the golden period. If treatment, which mostly includes the administration of the drug tPA for dissolving the clot, can be given, in most cases, the patient is most likely to survive. Hospital stroke post-stroke can range from few days to few months, depending on the nature of the damage. Another treatment that goes hand-in-hand with medicines is physiotherapy and exercise for stroke patients.
2. Physiotherapy: Right from the hospital days, physiotherapy is mandatory for a stroke patient, from the time he/she is stable. Even after the person is released from the hospital and goes home, physiotherapy is an important part of the post-stroke treatment which ranges from a few months to even years. A professional physiotherapist must be appointed who will understand the nature of the disability and subject the patients to exercises based on that. Helping the patient to move their body might seem to be the most difficult thing, but an experienced physiotherapist will apply various techniques to make the patient mobile and active. The one who has undergone a stroke might feel that the doctors are being harsh to them, as shifting slightly from their position might seem challenging.
Even after you have recovered and are quite mobile, your doctor and physiotherapist might warn you to do certain things which might see, harsh to you. According to these Chiropractors, if you return to early, you might risk getting re-injured and increase the chances of developing a chronic injury or pain. It is very important to listen to your physiotherapist and doctor even if you think that you have recovered completely after a stroke, as its effects can last for a lifetime.
3. Speech therapist: In most stroke patients difficulty in swallowing and speaking is a common factor, a speech therapist can help you move the muscles of your tongue and jaw muscles and help you live with dignity. Various and prolonged exercise sessions can be associated with both speech and physiotherapy which can be difficult for the patient to follow, but active co-operation from the part of the patient and his/her family can help them recover completely.
Dealing with a stroke can be difficult for anyone but with patience and dedication, one can surely come out of this terrible condition.