Each year, just under 800,000 men and women in America suffer a stroke. Three out of four strokes occur after the age of 65. Of those who have a stroke, around 94 percent survive. The recovery takes time. Some changes must be made within the home to accommodate changing abilities.
What Happens During a Stroke That Changes Mobility?
When blood flow to the brain is impacted, several things happen. Speech, movements, and muscle control are all impacted. It can take years to regain these skills, and sometimes those skills never return.
In the hospital, goals are to get the patient past the critical moments and prevent additional strokes. There’s a focus on getting the person to be able to swallow and prevent aspiration pneumonia. Some of the lost skills start to return on their own, but rehabilitation services are needed to regain as many skills as possible.
Rehab may take place in a nursing home setting or at the person’s home with regular visits to speech therapists, physical therapists, and other specialists. During this time, someone needs to be available to drive the patient to appointments and follow-up care.
What Changes at Home?
Following a stroke, there is a chance that your mom will need a wheelchair or walker. Over time, that need may diminish, but it’s safe to assume that she won’t be fully mobile. You have to be realistic. Is her home able to support her? Could she fit a wheelchair through her bathroom door, into her bedroom, and down a hallway?
You have to think of the stairs. If she lives in a home that has multiple floors, how many of the important rooms are on the main floor? Is her entryway level to the ground outside or are there stairs? If she can’t get in and out of the home in a wheelchair, there’s a problem. You’d have to install ramps and stairlifts before she comes home.
If her home wouldn’t accommodate a wheelchair, could it be set up to do so? Could you move her bedroom from the second floor to the ground floor? Are her kitchen and bathroom on the ground floor or upstairs? How much of her home could be shifted to the ground floor?
Sometimes, it’s more cost-effective to move a person to a one-level floor plan after a stroke. This would mean selling or renting her home and buying or renting something safer and more accommodating.
Who Can Support Her?
Throughout the day, your mom needs support. Home care services can help her with personal care, toileting, meals, transportation, and many other critical post-stroke care services. Talk to a home care agency to get her set up with a professional caregiver.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Homecare Services in Naples, FL, call the caring staff at Dial-a-Nurse today. Naples: (239) 307-0033. Ft. Myers: (239) 307-0065.
In 1995 he became Administrator of Dial-a-Nurse nursing agency, the oldest nursing agency in the Southwest Florida succeeding his mother who started the company 37 years ago. He is also President of Nevco, Inc., an educational healthcare training company begun in 1988.
Mr. Wolfendale has worked with the U.S. Department of Commerce on various Missions to improve the quality of life around the world by development of supportive healthcare programs. In 2005 he traveled with U.S. officials and addressed the Italian National Government assisting in the creation of Nurse Education mandates for that Country. In 2006 he was invited and spoke with the National Institutes of Continuing Education in Eastern Europe on healthcare education and developmental mandates, and most recently represented the United States at the European Union in Lake Balaton, Hungary in 2011. In 2014 he traveled with the U.S. Department of State to Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam in an effort to improve caregiver knowledge and training.
Mr. Wolfendale has worked with a number of non-profits in contributing and creating curriculum to improve the quality of life in third-world countries since 2001, and notably created a successful program in Odessa, India that has been modeled in other areas of the world. In his backyard, he has worked with local Goodwill Industries to provide curriculum and training to underserved individuals who have obtained employment as a result of educational training. He was the Congressional appointment to the Governor's purple ribbon task force in 2013, and has worked to educate caregivers in all aspects of Alzheimer's training.
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