A stroke can be a severe and even deadly incident, and for many people who suffer from a stroke, life is never the same. A stroke occurs when there is a blood clot in the brain, interrupting blood supply to specific areas. This causes damage to the brain tissue within minutes, and immediate medical attention is essential. Depending on the severity of the stroke, individuals can suffer from mobility loss, difficulty speaking, severe changes in personality, memory loss, and more. While many people recover to some extent from a stroke, few return to “life as normal.” If you’ve suffered from a stroke, keep reading to get some tips on adapting to life moving forward.
Focus on Healing
Side effects of a stroke are generally most severe immediately after the incident. Don’t assume that the challenges you’re facing now are going to last forever! Your doctor will likely prescribe many kinds of therapy to help improve speech, mobility, muscle strength, and memory. Stick with your therapies and be diligent about performing your exercises at home. With persistence and repetition, you will most likely heal to some extent, even if you don’t completely regain your previous level of health.
Have Patience with Yourself
Recovery from a stroke is often slow and steady. It can be difficult to make peace with slow progress, but it’s important that you have patience with yourself through this process. Take pride in the smallest of milestones, and don’t try to do too much at once. It’s easy to get frustrated with your new limitations, and that’s completely natural, but do your best to give yourself a little grace and room to grow.
Accept Help from Others
People who were largely independent prior to a stroke often struggle with accepting help after their stroke. But as already mentioned, your capabilities will be greatly reduced immediately following a stroke. You’ve just gone through a major medical trauma, and it’s okay to accept help—and yes, even ask for that help when you need it. Allow people to step in when and where help is needed.
Adapt First, Overcome Second
While it’s true that your mobility will likely improve to some extent as you continue with your therapies, it’s important that you adapt your home and your life to your current limitations. This ensures your safety now and will allow for you to take those small steps towards healing. Adding that stairlift or looking at walk-in tubs for your bathroom might feel like admitting defeat, but it’s not; it’s acknowledging your current limitations and investing in your personal safety.