Kelly and Ted Baxter had just moved into their Illinois home when Ted suffered a stroke that left him disabled. This disrupted both of their lives. It came as a shock to them both, especially Kelly. Ted was a healthy and athletic man, and everything happened so suddenly. While they both went through the hardships of recovery and care, Kelly had the responsibly of caring for him. He continued to recover 14 years after his stroke.
Recovering from a stroke can be a slow and painful process for both the caregiver and the stroke survivor.
Plan of Action
The responsibility can be overwhelming, but you shouldn’t panic. Everything begins with a plan, researching the best kind of care needed, then deciding on what the next steps are, makes all the difference. Caregivers, whether they’re hired or a loved one offering their service and care, provide the person they’re caring for with utmost care. People don’t seem to realize that caregivers sacrifice a lot to always serve. On the other hand, stroke survivors do their best to recover quickly but recovery is rarely instant. This causes a lot of mental stress and shifts in their mood. This situation is difficult for both the caregiver and the stroke survivor.
Take time to learn about your loved one or client’s condition and prognosis. Talk to medical professionals and health care teams about stroke recovery and rehabilitation. When you learn more, you’ll be better equipped to care for your loved one or client.
Be Active in Stroke Rehabilitation
Going with your loved one (or client) in therapy sessions can help with their morale. Encourage them to try new things but don’t immediately join in to help. Provide support and assistance but allow them to regain their strength independently.
Stroke survivors may have a change in their personality or behavior due to the effects of the stroke. They may be irritable due to the pace of recovery, but it is important to have a lot of patience and compassion toward them. Here are some tips to help you tackle common issues as you care for your client or loved one:
Always Listen to Your Doctor/Healthcare Professionals
It is important to listen to professionals when in the process of recovery. Keep a notebook to write down instructions, advice, and such. Consult your doctor before making your client or loved one take natural supplements or remedies because some of these supplements can increase the risk of secondary strokes. Listening to medical professionals can make recovery time faster.
Create a Safe Environment at Home
Their home can be a very dangerous place. Ensure their safety by installing grab bars in the bathroom or certain areas in the house where it is needed, ramps in the front door if necessary, better lighting, and a raised toilet seat. Be sure to remove all trip hazards everywhere in the house. All the steps and stairs should have good lighting to avoid trips. It’s also good to install temperature-restricting devices on the kitchen and bathroom faucets to avoid accidental burns.
Engage in a Healthy Lifestyle
Stroke survivors are at high risk of experiencing another stroke in the future. Engaging in a healthy lifestyle, taking prescribed medicine consistently, and visiting their healthcare provider regularly can help minimize this risk.
Monitor Changes in Behavior or Personality
Post-stroke depression is common in about 30-50 percent of stroke survivors in the early or later phases. Paying close attention to changes such as irritability, mood swings and aggressive behavior is important. These changes can significantly affect their recovery. Consult your doctor to develop a plan of action on how to approach the problem.
Joining stroke survivor support groups can help with a stroke survivor’s mental health which can affect their recovery. Socializing with people who understand their struggles can lift their spirits.
Caring for a loved one or client takes a lot of effort and energy. Caregivers should also take good care of themselves because the quality of their service can only be as good as their mental and physical state.
Be patient with yourself. There is no such thing as a perfect caregiver and exhausting yourself won’t make you care for your client or loved one better. You will learn new things along the way and that will build your skills and confidence as a caregiver.
Take Time for Yourself
Always make sure that you have time for yourself. Just because you’re a caregiver doesn’t mean you’ll have to lose your life to take care of others. Plan time to recharge yourself and spend time with friends and other loved ones.
Support isn’t just for stroke survivors. There is plenty of caregiver support groups that you can join, vent and listen to others. This can take some weight off your shoulders and surrounding yourself with people who understand you can make you feel better.
Stroke survivors require the best service for a quick recovery. If you are interested in hiring in-home senior care professional or providing care for stroke survivors in the Palm Beach County Area, here at Unified Pledge Home Health, we offer a FREE consultation to review your situation and help you decide what type of care is best suited to achieve your goals! Most major health and long-term care insurance plans are accepted!
Hiring professionals from Unified Pledge comes with the following advantages:
Level II FBI background checks of all staff
Driving history checks
Companions, health aides, LPNs are our direct employees and not independent contractors
Constant communication to patients, family, and care team
Registered Nurse supervision is ongoing with every care plan
Contact us today for a free consultation by Supervisory Nurse at 561-800-4581.