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5 Ways to Prevent a Second Stroke

By Manpreet Dhalla, 9:00 am on

The National Stroke Association reports that approximately 25 percent of strokes that occur each year are recurrent ones. Recovering from a stroke can be challenging, often requiring the need for professional post-stroke care. Ft. Lauderdale seniors can rely on the in-home caregivers at Home Care Assistance to provide transportation, assist with mobility, and help with daily tasks like bathing, cooking, and light housekeeping.

A senior is at greater risk for having a second stroke simply because he or she had one in the past. While this statistic may be alarming, seniors can prevent a second stroke by being aware of and taking these 5 preventive measures.

1. Get High Blood Pressure Under Control

High blood pressure is a known risk factor for stroke, yet it is also one of the easiest to change. Seniors should follow a healthy diet and take their prescribed blood pressure medications. Simple lifestyle changes such as minimizing stress and exercising also help control high blood pressure.

2. Stop Smoking

In addition to raising blood pressure, smoking also floods the bloodstream with toxins that increase the risk of stroke. Seniors who have difficulty quitting can find support from smoking cessation groups, or they can talk to their doctors about medications that curb cravings. Caregivers can celebrate successes during the smoking cessation process with healthy activities to encourage seniors to stay motivated. Keeping your loved one busy can also eliminate many of the cues that trigger cravings throughout the day.

If your loved one has had a stroke and you need assistance carrying out your caregiving duties, consider hiring a trained caregiver. Ft. Lauderdale elder care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.

3. Drink in Moderation

Some research has shown that a glass of wine can benefit the heart. However, seniors who have had a stroke should be cautious about indulging. Drinking more than two alcoholic beverages a day increases the risk of having a second stroke, so your loved one should avoid going overboard. Seniors who enjoy drinking can try healthier beverages such as grape juice, which can provide similar benefits as wine.

4. Take Medications Correctly

The symptoms of a stroke creates challenges that may prevent seniors from taking their medications. For example, if your loved one has memory loss, he or she may not remember to take medications on time. Seniors should set up a reminder system, such as an alarm, to take their medication. Caregivers can log the time a medication was given in a journal so other care providers know when the next dose should be taken.

5. Manage Diabetes

Having diabetes increases the risk for having a stroke, and it dramatically raises the chances of having a second one. Seniors should work with their physicians to develop a plan to keep blood sugar under control. It may be necessary to arrange for a professional caregiver who can monitor and administer medications when your loved one returns home from the hospital. Helping seniors with meal planning and preparation also makes it easier for them to stick to a healthy diet, minimizing their stroke risk.

If you are the primary family caregiver for a senior loved one living in Ft. Lauderdale, 24-hour care is available if your loved one’s health has become too difficult to manage without professional expertise. At Home Care Assistance, we take measures to help seniors prevent illness and injury by assisting with exercise and mobility, preparing nutritious meals, helping with bathing and other personal hygiene tasks, and much more. For more information on our senior care services, call one of our experienced Care Managers today at (954) 909-0370.