STROKE RECOVERY: TIPS FOR THE CAREGIVER
When your loved one suffers a stroke, you may have a lot of questions about whether your loved one will recover and what his/her needs will be in the months and years ahead. It can be overwhelming.
Here are some tips that can help you balance the needs of the stroke survivor with your own health and happiness. In the first weeks after a stroke, you'll have a lot to learn and assess as you look to the future.
EDUCATE YOURSELF: There can be a lot to learn, so take advantage of every opportunity to learn about stroke and your loved one's condition and prognosis. Take part in support groups or programs that are offered by the hospital and/or rehabilitation center. Talk with the health care team about what the stroke recovery and rehabilitation process will be.
LOOK INTO INSURANCE/FINANCES: Medicare and/or health insurance will cover most of the hospitalization expenses. There may be restrictions on which facilities and providers are covered. Be sure to find out exactly what is covered and what out-of-pocket payments may be needed. Also, remember, that as your loved one gains abilities or is no longer progressing, coverage may change or stop. A Social Worker or Case Manager may be able to assist you in these insurance issues.
STROKE REHABILITATION: Attend a few therapy sessions so that you can support your loved one during the recovery process. Be supportive and allow survivors to do things for themselves. It may take them longer to accomplish a task but once done- will help them become more self-reliant and confident!
ASSESS NEEDS WITH ABILITY TO MEET THEM: Your loved one's health care team can help you determine what kind of help will be needed. Caregivers often need to: provide personal care such as bathing and dressing; coordinate health care needs including medications and appointments (both doctor and rehab); manage finances and insurance; help the survivor maintain and increase his/her ability to function. Remember you can't do everything!! Be realistic about what you can take on and what you may need help with. ElderCaring can provide skilled caregivers!!!