General Tips For Stroke Recovery

Stroke recovery can be stressful for both the caregiver and the survivor. Here are some things to think about as you and your loved one face the challenges of recovery.

  • Take stroke recovery and caregiving one day at a time and be hopeful.
  • Remember that adjusting to the effects of stroke takes time. Appreciate each small gain as your loved one discovers better ways of doing things.
  • Caregiving is learned. Expect your knowledge and skills to grow with experience.
  • Experiment. Until you find what works for your loved one, try new ways of doing activities of daily living, communicating, scheduling the day, and organizing your social life.
  • Plan for “breaks” so that you’re not together all the time. This is a good way for family and friends to help on occasion. You can also plan activities that get both of you out of the house.
  • Ask family members and friends to help in specific ways and commit to certain times to help.
  • Read about the experiences of other people in similar situations. Your public library has life stories by people who have had strokes, as well as books for caregivers.
  • Join or start a support group for stroke survivors or caregivers. You can work on problems together and develop new friendships.
  • Be kind to each other. If you sometimes feel irritated, this is natural and you don’t need to blame yourself. But don’t “take it out” on your loved one. It often helps to talk about these feelings with a friend, rehabilitation professional, or support group.
  • Plan and enjoy new experiences and don’t look back. Avoid comparing life as it is now with how it was before the stroke.

© Copyright FamilyCare America, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Adapted from Recovering After a Stroke, AHCPR Publication No. 95-0664, prepared by the Agency for Healthcare Policy and Research.

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