Optimizing Therapy Outcomes in Stroke Rehabilitation

In order to maximize your stroke recovery efforts, it’s important to get the right care at the right time. You should also closely follow the guidance of your stroke rehabilitation provider team and be diligent about doing the work needed on your own as well.

Timeline of stroke recovery

Anticipating a reasonable stroke recovery timeline can help you to manage your expectations throughout your stroke rehabilitations process. While there is some variation from stroke survivor to stroke survivor, your doctor can give you a rough estimate of what to expect. Regardless of the overall expected stroke recovery timeframe, the brain has the most effective neuroplasticity and produces the most significant gains in the three months immediately following a stroke. That’s why stroke survivors should begin stroke rehabilitation as soon as possible.

Your Stroke Rehabilitation Treatment Plan

Different disciplines will play a role in stroke rehabilitation. The providers on your team may include:

  • Physical therapist
  • Occupational therapist
  • Speech therapist
  • Nurse
  • Social worker

Your team will collaborate closely with each other, communicating regularly about your case in order to deliver the most effective care possible. Don’t hesitate to ask any questions that you may have to any of these providers.

Importance of Independent Patient Practice

If you initially begin your stroke recovery in an inpatient setting, your activities will be closely supervised and monitored. However, when you transition back to your home or an outpatient setting, you’ll take on more of the responsibility for your recovery. That means that you must do the work in between therapy sessions in order to see continued progress. Your PT and OT will give you detailed instructions regarding frequency and repetitions of your exercise regimen.You may want to enlist a caregiver or another accountability partner to check in with regularly and help you stay on track. Taking full advantage of all of the resources available to you during the stroke recovery process will set the stage for success. If you are committed to the process and follow your health care team’s directions closely, you will be able to maximize your potential functioning moving forward.