Dealing with a stroke can be scary and stressful.
In the moment while it’s happening, it’s a medical emergency which needs immediate attention.
Having knowledge of how to recognize a stroke is the key to getting medical attention quickly.
However, the aftermath of a stroke can also be an incredibly difficult time.
Once the immediate emergency has been dealt with, you could be left with vision issues, trouble with movement, poor cognitive skills, and speech issues.
If you or someone you care about is recovering from a stroke, seeking out speech therapy for adults in Austin could help you to regain your speech and language ability.
Keep reading to learn how to recognize a stroke, and how a speech therapist can help.
What Is A Stroke?
When there is an interruption to the brain’s blood supply, the result of this is a stroke.
This interruption of blood supply to the brain can be the result of a blood vessel bursting, also known as a hemorrhagic stroke, or a blocked artery which is known as an ischemic stroke.
When the brain doesn’t get enough blood supply, it results in a lack of nutrients and oxygen and can lead to the death of brain cells within minutes.
There is also something called a transient ischemic attack (TIA), sometimes referred to as a “ministroke”.
A TIA occurs when there is a short term decrease of the blood supply to a part of the brain, however, it doesn’t last for very long and there is rarely any permanent damage.
It’s not possible to tell if something is a stroke or a TIA without medical testing, however, so TIAs should be treated the same as strokes.
What Are The Symptoms Of A Stroke?
If you suspect someone is having a stroke, or that you may be having one, here are some of the main symptoms to watch out for:
- Loss of balance, and difficulty while trying to walk
- Confusion, slurred or slowed speech, and problems with speaking and understanding others
- Severe headache, which comes with a decreased level of consciousness, nausea and vomiting, and dizziness
- Sudden weakness or paralysis on one side of the body
- Vision issues in one or both eyes
How To Tell If Someone Is Having A Stroke
One easy way to remember the signs of stroke to watch out for is the acronym “FAST” – this stands for Face, Arms, Speech, and Time.
If you notice any of the following symptoms, then it’s time to immediately get medical attention.
A stroke can result in paralysis on one side of the body, and this includes the face.
If you ask the person to smile and one side of their face is droopy, this is likely a sign of a stroke.
Is the individual able to raise their arms?
Inability to raise one arm, while the other one seems unaffected is another sign of a potential stroke.
Slurred, difficult to understand speech and a general inability to speak clearly could be a sign of a stroke.
Try to have the person repeat simple sentences back to you – if they’re unable to do so, it could mean they’re having a stroke.
If you notice one or more of the above signs, time is of the essence.
Call 9-1-1 or the emergency medical services in your area right away.
What Causes A Stroke?
As mentioned briefly above, there are two different types of stroke, with differing causes.
A hemorrhagic stroke occurs as the result of a leak or rupture of one of the blood vessels which brings blood, and therefore oxygen and nutrients to the brain.
Some conditions which can lead to this include:
- Misuse of blood thinning medications
- Weakness in the blood vessel walls due to protein deposits
- High blood pressure
- Trauma, for instance from a blow to the head or vehicle accident
The other type of stroke is an ischemic stroke.
These occur when there is a blockage which prevents blood from reaching the brain.
Blockages can be due to narrowed blood vessels from fatty deposits, blot clots, or other detritus in the bloodstream.
There is, however, another type of stroke – a pediatric stroke.
These affect children, and are incredibly rare.
According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, they affect between one in 2000 and one in 4000 children.
As a result, speech therapy for stroke recovery can pediatric speech therapy issue as well, uncommon though it may be.
How Can A Speech Therapist Help?
If you, or someone you care about has suffered a stroke, there is help to restore their speech so that you can get back to living your life.
One common after effect of a stroke is aphasia, a language disorder which affects language comprehension and expression.
Although it affects one’s ability to communicate, aphasia does not generally impact nonlinguistic skills like memory and executive function.
A speech therapist can help by testing for aphasia or other speech disorders, and offering treatments designed to help restore language skills.
Treatments are designed to focus on the specific needs of each individual patient and can include approaches such as:
- Community based support groups
- Computer based treatments
- Augmentative and alternative communication methods
- Conversation coaching
- The teaching of compensatory strategies
- And many others
Book Your Appointment With Sol Speech & Language Therapy Today
If you or someone you love is having language issues as a result of a stroke, or another brain injury, there is help.
As soon as you notice speech and language issues developing, it’s important to seek intervention quickly, for the best chance of recovery.
We’re Sol Speech and Language Therapy in Austin, Texas.
If you are in need of a speech therapist, contact our office today to book a consultation.
6448 E Hwy 290 Suite E-106,
Austin, TX 78723
Sol Speech & Language Therapy
555 Round Rock W Dr E-221,
Round Rock, TX 78681
Sol Speech & Language Therapy offers personalized skilled intervention to those struggling with their speech and language skills. Services offered include screening, consultation, and comprehensive evaluation. We also provide one-on-one and/or group therapy for speech sound disorders, receptive/expressive language delay/disorder, stuttering/cluttering, accent reduction, and much more.