According to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Toronto, depression is the second most common aliment of patients who have suffered from strokes. Raising the spirits of post-stroke recovery patients is a crucial part of the care that they receive. This article explores the three most common ways of raising the spirits and boosting the moral of patients who have suffered from strokes.
#1. Water Therapy
Water therapy, or hydrotherapy, is a common way of improving the life of stroke patients. The therapeutic properties of hydrotherapy can help to revive the use of certain functions in patients recovering from strokes. The principle reason for hydrotherapy’s popularity is that some stroke patients suffer from a loss of mobility. Movement is much easier for these patients in the water and activities such as stretching and balancing are easier with the support of the water.According to authors Lori Brody and Paula Geigle, some post-stroke recovery patients benefit from aquatic exercise programs to help them ‘build strength, increase their flexibility and increase their physical abilities’. Aquatic therapy is a common feature of post-stroke treatment programs. It is offered in conjunction with standard assessments and stroke treatments such as blood-thinning medication and dietary modifications.
#2. Music Therapy
A study reported by the Oxford Journal ‘Brain’ Journal of Neurology by the Oxford University Press found that musical post-stroke treatment is highly effective at improving the mood of patients. Researchers randomly assigned 60 stroke patients to one of three groups; a music group, a speech group and a control group. While the musical group listened to music and the speech group listened to audio books, the control group received neither of these therapeutic interventions. The results showed that stroke patients who listened to samples of music had a marked improvement in their mood by the end of the two-month program. The study concluded that ‘music listening enhances cognitive recovery and mood after middle cerebral artery stroke’.
#3. Non-Intense Physical Therapy
Non-intense physical activity can play a key role in reducing depression and boosting the recovery of stroke patients according to a 2010 report. Researchers found that a low-intense exercise program reduced depression symptoms in recovering stroke patients. Heart and Stroke Foundation researcher Dr. Jocelyn Harris told the Canadian Stroke Congress how “The power of physical activity to raise the spirits of recovering stroke patients is stronger than anyone suspected.”While the effect of vigorous physical exercise on the reduction of stroke symptoms is well understood, many stroke patients can’t reach the required aerobic levels to gain benefit. A study of 103 recovering stroke patients showed that patients who ‘spent an extra 35 minutes four times a week doing non-intense arm exercises as part of rehabilitation activities, such as pouring water in a glass, buttoning up a shirt, or playing speed and accuracy games’ improved stroke-affected arm and hand functions by 33 percent.
If you are looking for post-stroke treatment in Toronto, be sure to research the three areas suggested in this article. Contact the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Toronto for more information.