Many people face some type of challenge in their recovery after a stroke. Some symptoms can go away with time.
Talking with others about how you feel can help give you the support you need. Remember, you are not alone in your journey.
After Having a Stroke
Think Positive Thoughts
It's normal to feel sad, overwhelmed or nervous following a stroke. You may also have problems sleeping. Talk to your healthcare provider or counselor who can reommend resources to help.
Some medications can affect your mood, and depression is not uncommon after a stroke. Grieving for what you have lost is part of the healing process and is very normal.
Take one day at a time. Focus on the things you can do and consider joining our stroke recovery group.
Choose a Healthy Diet
In addition to managing your medications and staying active, there are simple changes you can make to your diet to help reduce your risk for future strokes. Eating a variety of foods from all food groups is the best way to stay healthy.
In general, try to eat less salt and fat by reading food lables. Limit the amount of cholesterol you eat to less than 200 mg per day.
Be Aware of Your Risk of Falling
Fall risks can increase after a stroke. A few things you can do to lessen your risk of falling include:
- Keeping active.
- Removing obstacles from your walking path.
- Using assistive devices (e.g. canes and walkers) as prescribed.
Rehabilitation therapy is often recommended after a stroke. The purpose of rehabilitation is to help improve your physical activity and ability to safely care for yourself. Rehabilitation may take place in another hospital, at your home or at an outpatient facility.
Exercising After Stroke
Your body may need time to get used to being more active. Check with your doctor about the types of exercise that are best for you. Here are a few general tips to begin doing more:
- Begin slowly and start with warm-up exercises.
- Do an activity that makes your heart beat a little faster for 10 minutes at least three times a week.
- After a couple of weeks, add five minutes to your exercising time. Continue this until you can exercise for 30 minutes at a time.
- Slowly work up to 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week and don't forget to cool down when you finish.
Join a Stroke Support Group
Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center hosts a stroke support group to help you learn about wellness and recovery following a stroke, in addition to connecting with other stroke survivors.
The Stroke Recovery Group is held on Tuesdays from 10:30 a.m. to noon in the Hylton Education Center.