A stroke is a medical emergency that happens when blood supply to the brain is cut off, either because of a blockage or because an artery bursts. Sometimes, stroke can be fatal.
Other strokes can cause temporary or permanent disability.
You can reduce the risk of a stroke causing long-term disability by getting medical help as soon as possible. This is why it’s important to recognise the warning signs of a stroke and act quickly.
The signs of a Transient Ischaemic Attack (TIA) are the same as for a stroke, but they go away within a few minutes. A TIA can often be confused for a migraine or cluster headache because they share symptoms, and can go away within 24 hours. Even if you think it is just a bad headache, do not self-diagnose.
A TIA is a warning sign that you are at a high risk of having a major stroke within hours, days or weeks. You need to treat it like an emergency and act quickly. See a doctor as soon as you can.
Stroke disproportionately affects Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians. Work with your nearest doctor or Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation to understand if you are at risk of stroke and what you can do.
Signs of a stroke and what to do – FAST
A stroke is an emergency. If you or someone near you shows any signs of stroke, dial 000 (triple zero) for an ambulance immediately.
FAST is an easy shorthand for remembering the signs of stroke. FAST stands for:
Facial weakness – check their eyes, cheeks and mouth for sagging
Arm weakness – can they move and lift both arms normally?
Speech difficulty – Are they speaking differently? Do they sound slurred or like they’re mumbling? Can they understand you?
Time – is critical. Call 000 immediately.
People having a stroke may also have:
- Sudden, severe headache
- Dizziness, loss of balance or a sudden fall for no reason
- Changes in vision
- Difficulty swallowing
Someone might experience one symptom of stroke, or many. If you experience, or witness someone experiencing these symptoms, call 000 (triple zero) immediately.
Reducing stroke risk
Some things that contribute to your risk of stroke are beyond your control, like your gender, age and family history. Other factors that contribute to your risk of stroke are things you can adjust. These include:
- Monitoring and treating high blood pressure
- Limiting alcohol consumption
- Not smoking
- Managing diabetes well
- Eating a healthy diet
- Getting a healthy amount of exercise
Work with healthcare professionals like doctors and dietitians to make the right changes
for your health needs.
You should also see a doctor if you notice anything unusual about your heartbeat. Some conditions can strain your heart and disrupt the way blood flows around your body, increasing your risk of stroke. Speak to your doctor if you notice any unusual feelings in your chest, light-headedness or unusual tiredness.
Country Care Group – we’re here for you
At Country Care Group we have the experience and passion to support you after a stroke. We want to support you to return to the things you love. We’ll work with you and your health team to understand your needs and provide specific advice.
We rely on our staff’s long-term expertise in the industry, we service and test things ourselves, and we listen to what our customers tell us.
What we will do: make sure you get the simple and effective tools you need for your rehabilitation journey.
What we won’t do: try to sell you junk that costs a lot and doesn’t work.
Come and make use of our private consultation suites. Meet with allied health professionals, support staff and NDIS Ambassadors right next to our product showrooms to make sure you’re getting the right supports for you.
Bathroom and personal care
Comfort and safety
Managing after you’ve had a stroke
For many people, stroke will leave lasting effects on the body and brain. Stroke survivors’ quality of life can be greatly improved by well-planned rehabilitation supports and a thoughtful care routine. These can include physiotherapy, speech pathology and occupational therapy. It might also mean making changes to your home and daily life to make sure you can get around safely and comfortably.
There is funding available to help you afford the services and equipment you need. Talk to your doctor about how much support you will need now and in the future.
If your stroke causes long-term disability, you might be eligible for the National Disability Insurance Scheme . The NDIS provides funding to access disability supports and services. Here at Country Care Group, we have expert NDIS Ambassadors who can guide you through the NDIS process.
The effects of stroke depend on where in the brain the stroke happened, and how much brain tissue was damaged.
Some long-term effects of stroke can include:
- Mobility issues ranging from difficulty using cutlery to paralysis
- Changes to vision
- Changed speech and difficulty swallowing
- Short-term memory loss, impulsive behaviour or other changes in personality
Stroke impacts everyone differently. Your own experience might even be different over time. It’s important to work with your doctors to understand how your stroke has affected your brain and the supports you will need.
Stroke can have immediate and long-term impacts on your mobility. Your mobility needs can also change over time, or day-to-day throughout your rehabilitation journey.
No matter your mobility needs and lifestyle, our experts can connect you with the right options for getting around in comfort and safety.
We build and sell high-quality, user-tested mobility supports, and offer free safety and orientation programs so you can get moving with confidence.
Complex Rehabilitation Team
We know survivors of major stroke can have complex care needs that require thoughtful planning and support.
Our Complex Rehabilitation Team are respected specialists in the field, with decades’ experience supporting stroke survivors through their rehabilitation and return to the home.
They work with you and your health team to provide the best advice and product recommendations.
Contact our Complex Rehab Team to book a free and private consultation.
Changes around the home can make a big difference to your quality of life after stroke. You might consider ramps, rails, or changes to your bathroom to keep you safe and confident in your home.
Country Care Group provide a home modification service tailored to you and your needs. Our qualified trades specialists work with you, your health professionals and architects to make your home safe and accessible.
Get in touch today
Whether you’re looking for some simple tools to make things a bit easier around the house, or you’re navigating the NDIS for the first time, our expert staff are here for you.
Contact us today so we can work with you to manage your stroke recovery and get the most out of life.