Many stroke sufferer’s need to relearn the physical skills which have been lost or reduced when the incident affected a specific part of their brain. Studies have shown that physiotherapy is one of the most effective ways of improving your quality of life and regaining independence after having a stroke.
Therapy is generally successful since the central nervous system is quite adaptive and enables it to recover certain functions. However, once you’ve regained these lost skills you’ll need to practice them on a regular basis through physiotherapy to retain them. At Spectrum Physiotherapy of Newmarket we’re here to help you recover and rehabilitate from your stroke as well as help fight off any re-occurrences.
The specific methods of stroke rehabilitation needed will depend on how your body has been affected by the incident. You may need to strengthen your motor skills via physical exercises which are designed to help your coordination and strength. Mobility training is often used which enables you to use a cane or a walker as a walking aid. Constraint-induced therapy may be introduced as this restricts the use unaffected limbs while you work on improving the function of affected limbs.
When muscle tension needs to be reduced you can help achieve it with the use of range-of-motion therapy and exercises. In some instances patients may engage in technology-assisted activities. These include things such as electrical stimulation to help stimulate any weakened muscles. Robotic technology is also common as it helps improve the function and strength of limbs through repetitive motions.
When should you begin stroke rehabilitation?
The sooner you can begin rehabilitation following a stroke the better. It’s important that you try to regain any lost or reduced skills and abilities as soon as your doctor feels your condition is stable enough. Physiotherapy rehabilitation also includes measures which are designed to prevent further strokes and additional physical damage. Many stroke patients begin their rehabilitation in hospital within 24 to 48 hours following their incident.
What is the length of rehabilitation?
The length of time your rehabilitation lasts will depend on how severe the stroke was and what specific damage was suffered. Some patients are able to recover quite quickly while others may need months of physiotherapy. Your unique stroke-rehabilitation recovery program will typically change depending on how quickly you can relearn lost skills and functions and which other ones need to be worked on. Some people respond to therapy a lot quicker than others and this is often related to the severity of the symptoms.
Our team of therapists will work hard to get you on the road to recovery and to assist you in lifestyle management to reduce the risk of a future stroke. This can be done by helping you lead and maintain a healthy and active lifestyle. One of the main goals is to enable you to resume the roles and activities you enjoyed in your life before suffering a stroke. These include community participation, hobbies and a possible return to work.
What will affect the rehabilitation?
It’s quite difficult to predict exactly how physiotherapy will affect each patient since a stroke and the recovery from it varies with each person. How quickly you recover and which physical abilities are affected generally depends on the severity of the stroke in terms of physical and cognitive effects. Your emotional state of mind, mood, dedication, and motivation can also greatly affect the success and length of the rehabilitation period. The support of your family and friends is also a factor as is the skill your rehabilitation team.
In general, the recovery rate is the greatest during the acute and the post-acute time periods, which are the weeks and months following a stroke. However medical evidence shows that you can still improve years later. There’s no doubt that stroke rehabilitation may take some time and patience and it may also be a frustrating experience at times. But the willingness and dedication of yourself and the Spectrum Physiotherapy of Newmarket team will be most beneficial in the long run.