Wednesday, March 3, 2021

What to Know About Returning Home After a Stroke

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one person has a stroke every 40 seconds in the United States. Strokes occur when the blood going to the brain is significantly reduced or interrupted, causing the brain to not receive the proper amount of oxygen needed to function. Knowing the signs of a stroke can help save a loved one's life and prevent additional severe strokes in the future. Once a patient returns home, show support by helping them transition back to daily activities.

Maintain a Healthy Living Space

An older woman sitting down with her head resting on her hands

After being discharged from the hospital or outpatient rehabilitation, caregivers should make sure the stroke survivor's living arrangements will safely accommodate their adjusted lifestyle during recovery. Having a relative or friend visit the home to help identify any safety hazards such as slippery floor surfaces or scatter rugs for better traction can help prevent injuries in the future. Stroke recovery program staff members can provide home evaluations, help coordinate grab bar and handrail installations, as well as recommend non-slip mats for showers. They can also demonstrate at-home exercises to maintain physical health and wellness.

Follow Stroke Recovery Guidelines

Recovering from a stroke will likely include lifestyle adjustments. The effects of a stroke impact people differently depending on which part of the brain was injured, how severe the injury is, and the person's overall health and wellness. Transitioning from inpatient rehabilitation back to living at home can pose challenges that recovering patients may not be able to handle on their own. Survivors recovering at home should regularly check in with their recovery team and continue at-home exercises. Support groups for survivors and friends can also help ease mental strain and foster comradery in times of isolation.

Know the Signs of a Stroke

The chances of a stroke occurring again within the first three months of recovery are significant. To understand the symptoms of a stroke, thinking FAST can help save a life.

F: Facial drooping: Noticeable drooping on either side of the face can indicate the beginning of a stroke. Ask the person to smile to see if this symptom can be identified.

A: Arm weakness: If a person is experiencing difficulty moving their arm or having trouble feeling it, ask the person to lift or move their arm to determine if urgent medical care is necessary.

S: Speech difficulty: If a person's speech is slurred, ask them to attempt to say a name or sentence. If this is challenging to the person and any of the above signs are also apparent, seek immediate medical attention.

T: Time: Immediate response and medical attention can significantly reduce the resulting damage of a stroke and help save a life. Call 911 immediately if any of these symptoms are present and new to the individual.

If you or a family member is in need of inpatient rehabilitation, seek compassionate and quality care at Midlothian Healthcare Center. Patients throughout the Midlothian area, including Waxahachie and Mansfield, trust our experienced team to help facilitate a healthy recovery and improve their quality of life through physical, occupational, and speech therapy services. Complete our online form or call 972-775-5105 to learn more about our rehabilitation programs.