How Can You Prevent Another Stroke From Occurring
Approximately 1 in 4 stroke survivors will have another stroke within 5 years. You can lower your risk by:
- Managing blood pressure: Regular exercise, a nutritious diet, and taking your prescription medications can improve blood pressure and reduce the risk of another stroke.
- Trying weight management: People who have overweight or obesity can have a higher risk of stroke. Exercising regularly and eating a balanced diet can cut the risk of various health conditions, including stroke.
- Taking medication: Despite lifestyle changes, some people will continue to have elevated risks of stroke. Medications can help reduce these risks. Work with your doctor to identify what medications are right for you.
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Immersive Gaming For Neuro
Immersive gaming requires the wearing of goggles with the use of other equipment to integrate movement into the entire immersive 3D world.
One game, VR-Mill, utilizes a Virtual Reality Headset, a treadmill, and a 3D motion capture system. This exergame involves walking on a treadmill while performing cognitive exercises that are being visualized via the headset. The 3D Motion Capture system tracks the players movements and then shows them in the virtual environment. The findings from a 2021 qualitative study suggested that this fully immersive VR game was acceptable and potentially useful as part of gait rehabilitation after stroke, as it was positively received by both stroke survivors and clinicians working within stroke rehabilitation.
REAL System, by Penumbra, Inc.
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Helping More Patients Playand Heal
Carolee J. Winstein, PhD, PT, a spokesperson for the American Stroke Association and a professor of biokinesiology and physical therapy at the University of Southern California, told Verywell that Recovery Rapids is very motivating.
Winstein, who was not involved in the study, said that Recovery Rapids is much more engaging than standard therapywhich can be relatively boring. The gaming can be done in the persons home, and they dont have to come into the clinic for therapy.
While at-home gaming might be more accessible than leaving home for therapy, there are still a few adjustments that need to be made to the setup.
Gauthier said that at the moment, games like Recovery Rapids require a gaming computera more powerful machine than what most people have at home.
To make it accessible to more patients, Gauthier said that the next step in developing the game will be to move it to smartphones and tablets.
Winstein said that another way to increase accessibility would be making the game playable for people who have lost some cognitive ability after a stroke.
Fun Activities For Stroke Patients To Try At Home
Barbara Brewer, COTA Flint Rehab
To prevent stroke rehab from getting boring, its helpful to find fun activities for stroke patients to do at home.
Different activities are helpful in different ways. For example, anything that gets you moving can help with mobility, and anything that gets you thinking can help with cognitive fitness.
The key to a healthy recovery from stroke is to always stay moving, and this page is full of interesting ideas.
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Finding The Best Games For Stroke Patients
Games offer exciting stimulation for stroke patients and can help promote a faster and fuller recovery from stroke.
Different games will engage different parts of the brain and target different cognitive skills. Therefore, its important to choose ones that will offer a good challenge without overwhelming you.
We hope this article inspires you to try some of these games and brighten up your stroke recovery.
Brain Exercises For Stroke Patients In Recovery
The effects of a stroke vary from one patient to another, depending on factors such as the hemisphere of the brain in which the stroke occurred, the size of the affected area, and the time it took to receive emergency treatment.
Along with coordination and mobility issues, stroke patients commonly experience cognitive deficits and memory loss.
According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, the most important element in any stroke rehabilitation program is to engage in carefully directed and well-focused activities that will allow the patient to relearn skills that were suddenly lost due to damage to the brain tissue.
Here are seven activities that can be beneficial in such cases.
Board games come in all shapes and sizes, with rules that vary in levels of complexity.
For instance, Scrabble allows patients to practice language, math, and fine motor skills. Jenga is another favorite, as it requires coordination to keep the blocks from falling over. Battleship can be used to help regain language skills, since players must vocalize certain actions and let their opponent know if they hit, sank, or missed a ship.
One of the after-effects of a stroke is a lack of physical or mental energy that interferes with daily activities, a condition sometimes referred to as post-stroke fatigue. For this reason, stroke patients might not want to leave their homes as often while in recovery.
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Are There Other Things You Can Do To Encourage Brain Healing
In addition to brain exercises, you can take steps to help your brain heal after a stroke. These measures may also have protective benefits against a future stroke. These include:
- Eating a heart-healthy diet: A diet low in saturated fats and sodium can reduce blood pressure, which is a leading cause of stroke.
- Getting regular exercise: Movement is vital for health, and especially for people recovering from a stroke. Exercise not only helps lower blood pressure, research suggests it can improve coordination and balance. It can also boost emotional health.
- Limiting alcohol: Alcohol can raise blood pressure, which can increase your risk of stroke and impair brain function. Cutting back to a healthy limit may boost brain performance after a stroke.
Can I Do My Usual Activities
You might be able to go back to an old interest. But it can sometimes be difficult to return to an old hobby because of the effects of your stroke. If thats the case for you, it might be possible to adapt an activity so that you can take part. That could mean learning to do something in a different way, and an occupational therapist might be able to help you.
There might be a practical solution such as using some technology or equipment. Or you might be able to do your activity with help from another person, such as having a partner for country walking if you find it difficult to go on your own.
You might find that you can take up an activity after making more progress with your recovery. For suggestions on getting the therapy you need, including accessing private therapy, contact our Helpline.
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What Percentage Of People Whove Had Strokes Make A Full Recovery
According to the American Stroke Association, 10% of stroke survivors will make an almost complete recovery.
The organization also says that 25% of stroke survivors will have minor impairments in their capabilities, while another 40% of survivors will experience moderate to severe impairment.
Finally, 10% of stroke survivors will require long-term care after a stroke.
Getting Help With Cognitive Training After Stroke
If any of the cognitive training exercises above resonate with you, try to practice them on a regular basis. Repetition is key to recover after stroke, including cognitive rehabilitation.
Consider therapy with a speech-language pathologist that can create a custom regimen that targets your problem areas. If you do not have access to a therapist, try using an app created by speech-language pathologists, like the CT Speech & Cognitive Training App.
As long as youre doing something therapeutic for your brain on a regular basis, you can maximize your chances of recovery.
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Cognitive Activities For Stroke Patients
Cognitive activities help stimulate the brain and challenge your mental skills.
If you want to improve cognitive function, like memory and critical thinking, give these cognitive activities for stroke patients a try:
- Card games. Simple games like War or Go Fish can be great fun during stroke recovery. Every time you use your hands, you send signals to the brain for recovery.
- Puzzles. Putting together a puzzle can be a great activity for stroke patients. If you get too frustrated, you can always take a break and come back later.
- Sudoku. This crossword-style brain game involves numbers and math. It comes in different levels of difficulty. Start with the easy ones and see if you like it.
- Checkers. This fun activity for stroke patients requires strategy and fine motor skills.
- Chess. This game requires more critical thinking than checkers.
- Trivia. Give your memory and critical thinking a workout with some trivia.
- Reading. A good book is perhaps the most classic cognitive activity for stroke patients. Try reading some books for stroke recovery. If your concentration is decreased, you can start with reading short articles on interesting topics.
How To Train Your Brain After Stroke
One of the favorite things to recommend to those who have suffered a stroke is playing board games. Patients will have to use their memory and focus on the game, which helps them maintain the level of concentration and increase it over time. Besides the fact it’s useful for stroke survivors as an exercise, it implies socializing with others, which is extremely important for mental health.
Furthermore, you can try solving puzzles. Again, it will help increase your focus level and train your brain to recognize shapes and colors. Card matching or the famous memory games also prove to be a very effective activity to recover from a stroke faster.
Sudoku, crosswords, and other “matching” games can help recover your skills and increase your memory levels.
Besides, some unusual activities, such as counting money, can also increase your focus and cognitive skills. So, if this is something that you find exciting, go for it.
If games are not your cup of tea, you can try cooking or listening to music. Invoking old receipts and lyrics from your memory can help with memory loss while learning some new skills and texts will help you get back in shape.
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Activities For Stroke Patients At Home
Im Nancy, a physiotherapist who has worked with many stroke patients helping them achieve their goals and ambitions. Here I have put together some fun ideas of activities for stroke patients at home, all with great therapeutic benefits.I hope that you will be inspired to try something new with your parent or friend. It can be really hard when you are unable to do your hobbies as you usually would but there is often a way where you can still be involved and enjoy them. See this is an opportunity to start something new!
Best Games For Brain Injury Patients
The following are a few games that will strengthen your cognitive function.
None of these games were designed exclusively for traumatic brain injury recovery, but they all activate important mental skills that you need to live independently.
We wanted to include something for every TBI patient, no matter their cognitive level, so we organized this list by difficulty, from easiest to most complex.
Some of these games might be too hard for you right now, or they might be too easy! But hopefully, you can find a few that work for you.
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Meet Other Stroke Survivors
Meeting other stroke survivors whether through a online platform such as the neuro cafe from stroke charity LEGS or chatting over the phone can be extremely reassuring to know that you are not alone. It also offers a great way to share experiences and expertise as well as celebrate the wins and come to terms with the losses.
The Legs neuro cafe is an online, informal, education and discussion session held every Wednesday. They have a blog which gives you a good idea of the types of themes in the sessions they run, take a look here.
The Stroke Association has My Stroke Guide, an online community allowing you to connect with others for advice, information and support.
The Stroke Association also offer a Stroke Helpline. The Stroke Helpline is a place for information and support. If you or someone you know has been affected by stroke, or you want to know more information on how to reduce your risk of a stroke, please get in touch.
Which Stroke Recovery Apps Will You Choose
After a stroke, daily therapy will help you see the bestresults possible. While some forms of therapy can be boring, you can help makeit feel less like homework by adding some fun to the mix.
For a better experience than an app, you can try gamifiedrehab devices like Flint Rehabs MusicGlovehand therapy and FitMifull body therapy. They add the element of gaming and fun to yourrehab exercises.
We hope you enjoyed this list of the best stroke recovery apps for 2020.
All images sourced from: Apple App Store
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Games Provide Repetition Without The Monotony
Repetition, consistency and high levels of engagement are often cited as key determinants in successful stroke rehabilitation. And, whether its picking up a discard in gin rummy, laying down a seven-letter word in Scrabble, or reaching a higher level in Candy Crush, all games require repetitive tasks and actions to reach a larger goal. Hm, that sounds an awful lot like work… but its not! Games by their nature are designed to keep us engaged, even entertained, while we complete what might otherwise be a set of repetitive or boring tasksall the benefits of work without it feeling like, well, work! Repetition has been shown to improve motor function an control after stroke, so why not do it in a fun and engaging way?
The Best Games For Stroke Recovery
Currently, there are many products available on the market which can be added to traditional therapy to increase upper extremity gains following a stroke.
The use of games or virtual reality can be a new pathway to creating new motor connections in the brain and building up an ability to increase the ability to complete arm movement. There are two types of gaming rehabilitation games:
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Video Games For Stroke Recovery: Key Points
When used correctly, video games can serve as an effective form of rehabilitative therapy for stroke patients. To promote recovery after a stroke, individuals must play games that engage the skills affected by their specific stroke.
For example, if a stroke affects your memory, you must consistently practice video games that engage memory skills. This helps the brain understand that there is a demand for those functions and encourages it to reorganize its neural circuitry.
Many stroke survivors struggle to stay motivated and perform the repetitions necessary to influence neurological adaptations. Video games help keep individuals engaged and challenge them to keep practicing.
We hope this article helped you understand how video games can be used as an effective way to promote recovery of both motor and cognitive skills after a stroke.
Games Take Us Out Of Our Heads And Into Recovery
Post-Stroke Depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions are common during stroke rehabilitation. Luckily, playing games has shown to be an effective way of taking us out of our heads. This helps keep negative thinking, despair, and worrying at bay. Games played with family or friends can be an especially helpful for promoting social interaction, combating isolation and getting us out of our heads, so we can focus on getting better.
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Hobbies For Stroke Survivors
There are many different hobbies open to us all and its also important not to give up on old hobbies straightaway there may be new ways you can do or be involved in your old activities after stroke.
It might be that you need to adapt them, approach them in a different way or maybe simply support others to do them with your expertise.Want to learn to play one handed guitar? Check out Indie Dirk offering lessons on YouTube.
As Indie shows, there are so many opportunities with online courses and classes.
One activity that stroke survivors may find particularly useful if they have language difficulties may be a simple touch typing course. Touch Type Read And Spell offers this to adult learners, its recommended for people with stroke and language difficulties.
In short, dont be put off or afraid to try new ways of doing old hobbies or just having a go at something new.
Strokes Are A Leading Cause Of Paralysis And Disability
Stroke is the most common neurological disorder in the U.S., with 795,000 strokes per year. Of stroke survivors, 15-30% are permanently disabled and ~20% require institutional care. In survivors 65 years or older, 50% had hemiparesis, 30% were unable to walk without assistance, and 26% received institutional care six months post-stroke. These deficits are significant because the most substantial recovery in motor function occurs over the first 30 days. However, the moderate and most severe stroke patients continue to experience some recovery for 30-90 days. The large patient population experiencing a decreased quality of life secondary to decreased ability to use their arm and requiring significant medical resources fuels an urgent need to develop new methods and technologies for improving functional rehabilitation in chronic stroke survivors.
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