Senior stroke survivors often have some type of cognitive impairment related to their strokes. These changes are sometimes stressful and concerning for family caregivers. However, there are some cognitive exercises that may be effective for older adults recovering from strokes. Below you’ll find details about five of them.
1. Art-Related Activities
The left side of the brain controls the right side, and vice versa. For this reason, senior stroke survivors who are having difficulty with left brain functions such as reasoning and language may see these skills increase if the creative parts of the right brain are sufficiently stimulated. A fun interactive way to do this is with art-related exercises, which can include coloring, painting, and drawing. Artistic activities can also give seniors with stroke-related communication difficulties a way to express themselves.
Recovering from a stroke, managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, and a variety of other health-related situations can make it difficult for a senior to continue living at home without having someone there to help. Prescott, AZ, live-in care professionals are trained to help seniors who need 24/7 assistance. With the help of a live-in caregiver, your elderly loved one can maintain a higher quality of life while aging in place.
2. Singing or Playing an Instrument
Some stroke survivors have reduced attention spans that may be enhanced by playing instruments or simply singing favorite songs. Singing sometimes helps with memory difficulties and other cognitive impairments that didn’t exist prior to the stroke. Music-based cognitive exercises that may help your loved one while recovering from a stroke include:
• Participating in group sing-alongs
• Playing repetitive rhythms (e.g., you do a few beats on a drum, and your loved one plays back the same beats)
• Playing an instrument your loved one used to play before the stroke
3. Board Games
Cognitive exercises can—and should—be fun as well as beneficial for elderly stroke survivors. Board games work well for this purpose because they involve the use of basic thinking skills along with the motor skills needed to roll dice and move game pieces. Make board games even more enjoyable for your loved one during recovery by:
• Playing his or her favorite board games
• Trying board games that specifically focus on memory skills
• Having a weekly game night to give your loved one something to look forward to as he or she goes through the stroke recovery process
An in-home caregiver can be a wonderful game-playing companion for your loved one. Families looking for top-rated at-home care providers can reach out to Home Care Assistance. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones.
4. Interactive Games and Apps
Elderly stroke survivors often need to relearn daily living skills that require concentration and focus. Interactive games and apps can be used for this purpose. In fact, some games and apps are specifically designed with stroke survivors in mind. For instance, certain apps are devoted to increasing the ability to understand and use speech. Popular cognitive exercise apps include:
• Lumosity – Boosts memory and focus
• Constant Therapy – Has more than 100,000 cognition, language, and communication exercises
• Thinking Time Pro – Helps with attention, memory, reasoning, and other key cognitive skills
5. Grocery Shopping
Senior stroke survivors appreciate feeling useful and productive. A trip to the grocery store allows your loved one to work on his or her cognitive skills by helping you find things on your weekly grocery list as he or she reads labels and identifies various items. At the same time, he or she is doing something useful.
A professional caregiver can be a fantastic source of information and support for a senior recovering from a stroke. If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of Prescott home care. Our caregivers provide transportation to and from medical appointments and social events, nutritious meal preparation, assistance with daily exercise, and help with everyday tasks like bathing, grooming, and light housekeeping. To learn about our high-quality in-home care services, give us a call at (928) 771-0105 today.