Caregivers, follow these helpful tips for assisting loved ones recovering from a stroke.

Did you know that more than 2/3 of stroke survivors will have some type of disability? If you are a caregiver for a stroke survivor, it can be overwhelming as you help them relearn tasks and negotiate their surroundings. Try these tips as you adjust to your new role.

Modify the Home
If your loved one is living at home, help make adjustments around the house to assist with the disabilities that may have arisen as the result of stroke. Install safety handles and accessibility elements in the home. Keep phone numbers handy and written in large, easy to read letters. If your loved one struggles with memory loss, consider labeling objects around the home, including pictures of friends and family.

Be Patient
Healing and rehabilitation after a stroke can take a long time. It’s a process that requires patience and support. Celebrate every milestone, big and small. Support your loved one through discouraging times when it feels like progress isn’t being made fast enough. Try not to express discouragement or disappointment.

Get Your own Support
Being a caregiver can take a major emotional toll. Make sure you’re getting the help you need, whether it’s having a friend assist you with errands or seeing a therapist. Find support groups for caregivers and take care of your own health with a healthy diet and regular activity. Allow yourself to grieve for the changes in your life and your loved one’s life.

Assist with Therapy
Whether your loved one is receiving inpatient therapy or outpatient therapy, he or she will receive instructions for exercises to do regularly. Assist in any way you can. Some tasks will require physical assistance. You can also help out by serving as a therapy reminder and providing cheerful motivation and encouragement to get through therapy exercises.

Manage Household Tasks and Bills
After a stroke, your loved one may struggle with speech, memory and motor skills. Assist your loved one by managing financial issues, bills and regular household tasks such as taking out the garbage and washing dishes. Get help with as much as you can so that you can manage the most sensitive tasks, such as banking or healthcare follow-up, yourself.

North Hills Hospital’s Primary Stroke Center is accredited by the Joint Commission because it provides the emergent care necessary for the person having the stroke, keeping in mind that “time is brain.” North Hills Hospital’s Primary Stroke Center also provides follow up care and education to prevent further stroke and to optimize the stroke survivor’s recovery. Stroke care takes a team approach, and at North Hills, our team is committed to successful stroke recovery.

For more resources about stroke care, stroke symptoms and more, please visit North Hills Hospital online here. If you would like to find a physician for you or your loved one, please call our physician referral line at 1-855-5NHILLS.

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