A stroke can affect people in a variety of different ways, such as impacting muscle movement, cognition, speech, and even personalities. Emotional and behavioral changes can sometimes be the most challenging for both stroke survivors and their loved ones. Emotional and behavioral changes can be caused by the physical changes of the brain injury but it can also be caused by how the stroke has affected the stroke survivor’s outlook on their life.
Everyone is affected by a stroke differently and it’s very common to show signs of post stroke depression and behavioral changes. Many people often find themselves feeling angry, frustrated, anxious, hopeless, and sad because the stroke has changed their lives and they no longer feel like they are the person they used to be.
Emotional and behavioral changes are NOT permanent
Many people wonder if emotional and behavioral changes are permanent. The answer is usually no. In order to help these changes, it is important to get help from a doctor. As part of stroke victim support, a doctor will usually recommend therapy. Sometimes emotional and behavioral changes don't go away completely but there are ways to control them and make them more tolerable.
According to the Stroke Association after a life-changing event, such as a stroke people tend to go through the following stages:
- Shock and Denial: confused, afraid, numb
- Anger: frustrated, embarrassed, anxious
- Depression: feeling overwhelmed and helpless, shutting yourself off from others
- Coming to terms: reaching out others, wanting to talk, trying to understand what has happened
- Acceptance: thinking about the future, exploring the new options
Many people become frustrated or angry because they can no longer do the things they used to do due muscle weakness and impaired range of motion. In order to regain strength and range of motion in the affected upper extremity, it is very important to perform repetitive motions in that arm. One way to perform these exercises is by using either the Neofect Smart Glove or Smart Board. These products will help increase the brain's ability to rewire itself and increase one's range of motion and strength in the upper extremities. To learn more about the Neofect Smart Board or Smart Glove and other stroke victim support products, please call us at (888) 623-8984 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Becky Alter, OTR/LBecky is an occupational therapist and healthcare content writer based out of Denver, CO.