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What to Do After an Elderly Person Has a Stroke

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Stroke is the leading cause of death among older adults. After a stroke, many seniors have limited mobility, and some could have permanent disabilities. Senior stroke survivors can benefit greatly from receiving professional stroke home care. Birmingham, AL, Home Care Assistance is committed to helping seniors and their families manage the various challenges following a stroke.

Here are 5 steps you and your loved one can take after a stroke to prevent it from happening again. 

1. Use Effective Communication 

Many seniors lose the ability to speak after a stroke. Your loved one may have slurred speech, depending on the extent of the damage. Do not speak loudly when communicating with your loved one. Speak directly to him or her when having a conversation. Make sure he or she does not strain when communicating with you. Stress and exertion at a time when your loved one has low energy levels can lead to another stroke or other health issues. 

2. Encourage a Healthy Diet 

Following a healthy diet can help your loved one recover from a stroke and possibly prevent another one from occurring. High cholesterol levels, obesity, and hypertension are all risk factors associated with a stroke. However, eating a diet low in sodium and calories can help your loved one recover. Here are some foods seniors should incorporate into their diets after a stroke:

  • Vegetables and fruits
  • Lean meats and poultry 
  • Whole-grain foods 
  • High-fiber foods 
  • Low-fat dairy products

3. Maintain Focus 

After having a stroke, your loved one’s brain needs to recover. Certain things in life may cause confusion. The extent of the damage will determine how long it takes the brain to return to normal. Limit the number of distractions in a room. For instance, the radio should not be on if your loved one is watching television because it could increase the chances of becoming confused and irritated. Make sure your loved one focuses on one thing at a time. 

4. Assist with Physical Activity 

Even though the stroke may limit your loved one’s movement, he or she will need to begin exercise routines as soon as the doctor gives approval. The area of the body that has been affected by the stroke should be the target of the exercise routine. For instance, if your loved one has lost mobility in the arm, he or she will need to develop an exercise routine and techniques to help it recover. Your loved one can try passive movements and exercises to gain full mobility in the arm. The goal of exercising post-stroke is to help your loved one enhance muscle control while reducing spasticity. 

A professional caregiver can help your loved one establish an exercise routine and other lifestyle changes after a stroke. A Birmingham, AL, home caregiver is the perfect option if your elderly loved one wishes to age in place with greater independence. Cooking, bathing, grooming, and light housekeeping are just a few of the important everyday tasks a caregiver can help with.

5. Prevent Depression

Your senior loved one could experience depression after a stroke because of the limited ability to communicate, move, or perform other normal functions. Depression can trigger another stroke because it increases stress levels, which prevents the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain. Encourage your loved one to join support groups while recovering from a stroke. You can also invite family and friends over to lift your loved one’s spirits and prevent depression.

Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality senior care. Birmingham families trust in Home Care Assistance to help their elderly loved ones age in place safely and comfortably. Call (205) 438-6925 and schedule a complimentary, no-obligation consultation with a friendly and knowledgeable Care Manager.