Improving Awareness

A Blessed New Year to all of you! Yes this is my first post in 2008 and my good friend Vivienne has done a very thought provoking post today to help kick-off the New Year with helpful, thought provoking self-questioning. I have to say it is a good way to start afresh in 2008. It is indeed appropriate to address the issue of “awareness".

Stroke survivors, are not aware of their affected side after a stroke and I am sure many of you have noticed that how they bumped into door jams, turning forgetting to take the affected hand along…….. Every caregiver and family members and yes including visiting relatives and friends can help the survivor be more aware of their affected side. Here are three helpful suggestions to improve awareness in stroke survivors:

1. Approach The Neglected Side.

Always sit on the affected side when talking. Holding and touching that hand while talking. This help the survivor to turn towards you, and enforcing awareness. If he or she finds difficulty turning their heads towards you, gently hole their chins and turn their heads while talking to them.

2. Place Things On The Neglected Side.

Placing the night table on the affected side of the bed where you placed the TV Remote, glass of water etc. It sounded creul but in the long run this help with their awareness. It is also proven that forcing the survivor to turn towards the affected side helps arm movements and improves recovery.

3. Include Neglected Side In Daily Tasks.

The most helpful thing a caregiver can do is to assist the survivor using their affected hand in daily tasks like combing the hair, feeding himself, squeezing toothpaste, using the cleaning cloth to wipe etc. There is an interesting phenomenon when you take somebody’s hand for it causes that person to turn his head towards you followed by eye movements as well!

Try all these bits of helpful actions and you help stroke survivors improve awareness and contribute to recovery of the affected arm. Now you are aware so that the next time you visit a stroke survivor remember all these little steps may 2008 be a year of fantastic improvements in recovery for all stroke survivors.

Related Posts

What is a Stroke?
Facts of Stroke & The Warning Signs.
Stroke Risk Factors.
Understanding Spasticity
Eating & The Stroke Survivor
The Job No One Asks For
Caregivers Month
Botox & Spasticity
The ABC’s of Caregiving
Behavioural Changes
There is Hope

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About bokjae

A retiree and full-time home care-giver to my wife a stroke survivor. A graduate in Electrical & Electronics Engineering, working as Project Manager; and was in Senior Management (Executive Director) with a local Telecommunications Company for 22 years till retirement. Upon retirement I was attached to a Church serving as full-time lay leader, lay counsellor as well as in social or community work such as old folks home, drug rehab, orphanage.

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