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Picture showing a caregiver and stroke survivor

By Rawlings Oke Godwin

On 12 Nov, 2021

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A caregiver is a paid or unpaid member of a person’s social network who helps them with activities of daily living (wikipedia). Stroke caregiving can be rewarding especially when the person whom you are caring for begins to regain their health but the joy becomes fully experienced the person you are caring for becomes fully well.

Due to its sudden and unpredictable onset, a stroke often meets stroke survivors and their caregivers unprepared to deal with its impact on daily life.

Stroke survivors and their caregivers often suffer from various degrees of permanent disability and sustain impairments that significantly affect their personal, familial, and social well-being.

There are several challenges caregivers go through when caring for someone who has had a stroke (cerebrovascular accident/ CVA). The following are some of the things you may experience during your care for someone who has had this clinical condition.

  1. High expectations: Someone who has had a stroke usually / may have high expectations of quick recovery.  Inability to meet this high expectation may lead to feelings of disappointment. They may begin to act funny towards you as the carer.

2. Unending questions: You have to be ready for all kinds of questions from the one you are caring for. They will ask you questions about when they will leave the hospital?  When will they go back to work? Will they ever regain the use of their limbs completely?

3. Help them to do several basic personal cares: Several challenges abound here helping them do most of their care. You may have to help them when bathing, putting on their clothing,  assist them to walk around.

4. Stress: One of the biggest stress may experience could be psychological stress.

5. Abuse: Sroke caregiver may become abused by the person you are caring for. You may react negatively if you are not patient enough to handle the person you are caring for especially when they start acting funny.  This attitude may be because of anger, fear of the unknown and it may be because of depression.

6. Negative economic impact: The economic implications are enormous. You may have to be absent from work for a while to care for your person. You definitely would spend so much of your resource.

7.Poor health: The acute phase of care for stroke patients can be demanding and stressful on you the carer. This could be as a result of poor sleep, inability to care for yourself, missing your usual food.

Stroke care is known to put an emotional,  social and financial burden on both the carer and the survivors of stroke. Putting a balance between caring for the stroke patient and caring g for yourself as a carer will create a great balance.

Image: caregiver


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