A stroke is a life-changing experience and stroke survivors can often experience significant changes in their ability to function safely and effectively.
Read on to learn more about how the Occupational Therapy team at Circle Rehabilitation can help you to regain function following a stroke.
A stroke affects the brain and can cause significant problems with normal functions. Occupational therapy is concerned with your ability to carry out tasks as part of everyday life (for example, making a cup of tea or getting dressed). This is also often referred to as ‘the ability to function’.
Following a stroke, many people find they have real difficulty in carrying out these standard tasks and this can affect their lives considerably. It not only impacts them but also their family and friends.
Every person is different, and part of the challenge in providing effective stroke rehabilitation is to tailor any help to the individual. While an overstretched health service will often struggle to provide such person-specific support, at Circle Rehabilitation we have a multi-disciplinary team of experienced healthcare experts who specialise in helping people recovering from a stroke.
An occupational therapist seeks to address any dysfunctions caused by a stroke, and we are delighted to have an occupational therapist who can help you adjust to the effects of your stroke and to restore as much function as possible for everyday living.
When a person is first admitted to Circle Rehabilitation as an inpatient following a stroke, they are assessed by a physiotherapist and an occupational therapist, who work together to get an understanding of the extent of any damage caused by the stroke and the potential for rehabilitation.
Often it is seen that occupational therapy will be of significant help to the patient, and our occupational therapist will then carry out a thorough, personalised assessment and agree client-focused goals. The occupational therapist will also implement a therapy programme to maximise our client’s abilities; this may include expanding activity opportunities and focusing on specific neurological techniques to address difficulties with cognitive, sensory, and motor skills. They will help teach independent living skills including personal care, domestic, and financial management and enable the client to identify and carry out fulfilling leisure activities. Patients are always assessed for any recommend assistive technologies, including environmental aids, to promote independence.
Since each person is different, the nature of the therapy also depends on how the stroke has affected their life, what the person finds meaningful in their life role and what they would like to improve.
Helping you prepare for a ‘new normal’
There is no question that a stroke seriously impacts your life. While recovery can sometimes be slow, the occupational therapy team will work with you to help you adjust and prepare for a ‘new normal’. While you may not be as capable as you were prior to the stroke, you will receive expert help and support, aiming to optimise your independence and level of function.
To that end, we even have a dedicated kitchen for patients to practice simple everyday tasks, such as making a cup of tea or preparing a meal. When appropriate, we also take people outside and even on shopping trips! This focus on preparing for activities in everyday life is a crucial part of any stroke rehabilitation and is something our occupational therapists are extremely good at.
It can sometimes be a challenge adjusting to life back home after staying at Circle Rehabilitation. We do everything we can to help the transition from hospital to home go as smoothly and gently as possible.
While you’re an inpatient, we hold regular meeting with any family members to assess your goals and to discuss plans for discharge (usually back home). Plans for discharge usually begin 5-6 weeks beforehand, to give plenty of time to get everything in place.
We will arrange to carry out a home visit, accompanied by family members or a friend, to assess any requirement for equipment or help with accessibility. If there is a need for social services to be involved in your ongoing care, we will contact them and liaise with them about your needs.
We know that the transition from hospital to home can be unsettling and we want to reassure you that we are there to help support you and your family during that process.
Should you have suffered a stroke and feel you have experienced a loss in your quality of life and the ability to carry out with your daily activities, you can contact the Occupational Therapy team at Circle Rehabilitation.
A stroke can be an unnerving medical emergency and often it can be a physical and emotional challenge to pick yourself up and start on the journey to recovery. With the team at Circle Rehabilitation, you will be expertly supported every step of the way.