What is a Stroke?
In healthy people blood is allowed to flow freely from the arteries to the brain and other vital organs. Blood clots forming in these arteries can stop the regular flow of blood or slow it down to a trickle. This is medically known as an ischemic stroke and takes different forms.
An embolic stroke is where a moving blood clot forms in the body and is carried through the blood stream and into the brain. Once it reaches the brain the clot will become lodged in one of the smaller blood vessels and cause the patient to suffer a stroke.
A large blockage to one of the arteries supplying the brain with blood is known as a thrombotic stroke. You can suffer from either large vessel thrombosis or small vessel disease.
– Large Vessel
Thrombosis is the most common and very often sufferers have an underlying health condition such as coronary artery disease.
– Small Vessel
Disease affects small arteries and can sometimes go unnoticed by sufferers and health professionals. It is often linked with high blood pressure.
If a blood vessel in the brain breaks then the result is a haemorrhagic stroke which leaks blood into the brain. In severe cases this may require surgery to remove an aneurysm or clot from the brain.
What Determines the Severity of a Stroke?
It is difficult to say how severe a stroke will be as it depends which part of the brain has been affected. If your sense of smell is affected for instance, you may not notice this quite as much than if your speech was affected.
The reason some people get symptoms down one side of their body is because a stroke usually affects just one side of the brain – either the left or the right.
Another factor in the severity of a stroke is how quickly the patient was able to receive treatment. The longer you leave a stroke, the more damage it can do. Fast treatment can often reduce the long term effects of a stroke.
How Long Do Stroke Symptoms Last?
Whilst some patients may suffer severe stroke symptoms, partial recovery from these is quite normal although total recovery is less so. Patients can regain some of their lost independence and successfully adapt to the loss of function withcertain mobility aids such as stairlifts. If you need temporary aids to help you to recover from the effects of a stroke then stairlift rental might be a good solution.
Other mobility aids aim to improve co-ordination by strengthening a person’s grip or even focusing on their breath to build up their diaphragm muscles and improve their speech.
If your loved one has difficulty in remembering tasks or thinking through a problem then mind exercises can help to strengthen these areas of the brain. Such products include the popular Brain Trainer Nintendo games but as those who have suffered a stroke may find it difficult to operate a computer game, such mind exercises also come in book form.
Adapting to life after a stroke can be difficult but with the help of mobility aids, independence at home can be achieved which will greatly improve a person’s quality of life.