As discussed in the second part of this three-series blog, a stroke comes with a whole host of physical, psychological, cognitive, and social symptoms. However, many individuals recover their functioning through rehabilitation, which may allow them to regain independence.
Therapies for Rehabilitation
Rehabilitation from a stroke can happen via a number of different therapies (that come from different specialisations and fields) that allow an older adult to regain a certain level of functioning. Rehabilitation in itself, supports the brain in regaining the recovery of some pathways that aid in improved functioning.
Naturally, physical therapy through physiotherapy is one of the most important parts of the rehabilitation process. Working with a physiotherapist allows the individual to recover normal and basic motor functioning. The individual would be able to regain a level of autonomy and independence, performing activities such as walking, sitting, and getting into bed. These may all be simple movements, but they help a person who has just suffered from a stroke feel better.
Working on fine motor skills is also an integral part of the rehab process. Engaging in occupational therapy continues to allow the individual to work on regaining autonomy and independence. Occupational therapy allows the individual to regain strength in doing certain activities of daily living, such as showering, getting dressed, drinking, and even eating.
As discussed previously, some stroke sufferers may also find themselves living with some speech difficulties after the stroke event. Consequently, working with a speech-language pathologist is also important in the rehab process. Speech therapy helps the individual improve any communication issues, leading to the recovery of a level of language and communication.
Finally, we have mentioned the heavy effects of stroke on the mental health of the individual. Working with a psychologist is also vital to the rehab process. A stroke event is a major adverse life event, and working therapeutically to help one accept what happened, learn healthy coping mechanisms, and support one’s own emotions is imperative in dealing with this.
Note: Always Keep the Individual in Mind
One has to keep in mind that the rehab process for each individual is very subjective. The rehab is unique to each individual, and there is no specific time frame or specific levels of functioning that are standard. Despite this, one should never give up. There are many different therapies, as mentioned above, that can help support the stroke sufferer and increase their quality of life.
If you think that you can benefit from professional support on this issue you can reach out here.
Mr Yaser Teebi works as a Clinical Psychology Practitioner at Willingness, and works with patients with complex issues, including depression, anxiety, trauma, chronic pain, grief and cognitive impairment. Mr Teebi has graduated from the following degrees with Merit: Bachelor of Psychology (Hons), a Master of Gerontology and Geriatrics , and a Master of Psychology in Clinical Psychology, all at the University of Malta. He is currently reading for a PhD in Clinical Psychology and Geriatrics at the University of Birmingham.