Stroke and home care associated with it
Farzana Shaheen had a paralytic stroke 2 years ago. It paralysed her on the right side. She is a diabetic and hypertensive. A paralytic stroke is caused by a cardiovascular accident and it affects motor, function, language, reading, listening and thinking abilities too.
In Farzana’s case, she lost her ability to speak following the stroke. Her daughter, Roshna who took care of her in the post stroke recovery period had many responsibilities at home. The family hired a professional caregiver from Life Circle, a home nursing care provider, to help Farzana with activities of daily living, exercising and administering medicines.
Difficulty in understanding or producing speech is commonly seen in people who have suffered a stroke. This condition is known as Aphasia and speech therapy is the most common treatment for it. When family caregivers have multiple tasks on hand, conversations at any time that suits the recovering senior may not be possible. In Farzana’s case, Sukanti Gochayat, the caregiver kept the patient engaged in conversations whenever she felt up to it. This helped Sukanti understand Farzana better, strengthened their relationship and has given Farzana the confidence in herself because she is able to express herself better now.
“Everything now runs smoothly”, says Roshna, who now handles her home while her mother has company and is under supervision. Sukanti is extremely fond of her, “Aunty bahut acchhe hai, yeh family bahut accha hai, mujhe yahaan bahut accha lagta hai,” (Aunty is very nice, the family is very good, I like it here) she says.
Senior home care: The importance of bonding
“After the stroke, mummy was not able to talk. Now her talking power has improved. She chats a lot with Sukanti. They bond very well”, says Roshna. “They talk about recipes, Sukanti’s home and her village back in Orissa.”
The “connection” formed between the caregiver and patient influences recovery. Seniors love to talk about their lives. Listening to them and engaging them in conversation keeps their mind active and healthy. You can never underestimate the power of conversations, generally and for stroke survivors in particular. It motivates, it heals, and it provides moral support. Companionship is an important aspect of caregiving that decreases isolation and improves the quality of life.