October 2016 - ApoKos Rehabilitation
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Archive for October 2016

Symptoms of Brain Injury: An Overview

Your friend complains of short spells of dizziness and headache. She later tells you that she had suffered from a mild head injury by slipping and falling in the kitchen. You also find out that she is also facing sensory problems like ringing in her ears and blurred vision. And before you know it, she is being admitted in the hospital as the previous symptoms have worsened.
Turns out that “mild” head injury had aggravated and turned into traumatic brain injury. Be it a blow or knock to the head and even a minor accident, taking such injuries lightly can result in severe brain damage. Some other causes include sports-related and motor vehicle accidents, falls, and physical assaults.
Understanding the symptoms hence becomes imperative for both the patient and the rehabilitation specialist. The rehab experts can then formulate a patient-centric therapy and exercise program for their betterment. Thus, it is integral for patients to understand the symptoms of Traumatic Brain Injury:
• Cognitive – Problems in paying attention, getting distracted easily or unable to concentrate on any chore. Many patients also suffer from memory loss, confusion and problem in processing information.

• Sensory – Difficulty in interpreting temperature, touch, and movement. Sensitivity to sound and light are also common problems.

• Vision – Patients often complain of blurred vision. Also, partial or complete loss of vision and weakness of the eye muscles can be other issues.

• Physical – Loss of consciousness which can range from a few minutes to hours. Other symptoms of traumatic brain injury include nausea, persistent headache, seizures or convulsions, loss of coordination and weakness.

• Speech and language – Inability of understanding spoken words, slurring of speech, problems in reading and writing are some of the other symptoms.
It is understandable that a serious injury can have a major impact on a patient’s life. For gaining back independence, specialists advice that rehabilitation and therapy can be immensely helpful. There are different types of therapies which rehab experts recommend including:
1. Speech and language therapy
2. Occupational therapy
3. Physical or Physiotherapy
4. Cognitive therapy
With proper in-patient rehabilitative care, ensuring speedy and effective recovery of the patient becomes possible. Ignoring a serious brain injury for long can cause life-long damage. So for regaining your freedom, opting for the appropriate rehabilitation program becomes necessary.

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Treatment Aspects of Cardiac Rehabilitation

The primary aim of rehabilitation is to ensure that you gain back your life and freedom of movement. When a cardiovascular disorder occurs, it affects you mentally and physically. An individualized cardiac rehabilitation program helps in improving your health and also prevents future cardiac events like stroke, myocardial infarction or heart attack.

Such optimal rehab therapy programs further aid patients in recovering from interventional and surgical procedures. Before going forward with the rehab program, it is essential to understand what the treatment goals include along with their effectiveness.

  1. The long-term goals include the identification and treatment of cardiac risk factors.
  2. The short-term goals include restoring a patient’s cardiac health and helping them regain their independence.

The rehabilitation program begins with a thorough medical evaluation. Creating a comprehensive program, suited to a patient’s requirement is the primary aim of rehab specialists. Supervised and graded exercise is another integral part of cardiac therapy. Rehab specialists also have to educate patients about controlling the risk factors through lifestyle changes.

Here are some positive ways in which the treatment aspects of cardiac rehabilitation can improve the quality of life:

  • Physical activities – Rehab specialists will recommend certain exercises like walking, jogging or cycling. Endurance activities are also part of the rehab program along with strength training. Such physical activities will help in increasing and enhancing your fitn The rehabilitation team will also ensure that you perform the exercises at a safe and comfortable pace.
  • Changes in lifestyle – The rehab team will guide you in making the requisite lifestyle changes for you to lead a healthy and hearty life. Getting rid of unhealthy habits like smoking, drinking and maintaining a healthy weight are essential aspects of the treatment. Patients will also learn about managing fatigue and pain with an integrated therapy program.

Altering the risk factors of cardio vascular events, ensuring physical improvement, providing psychological support to patients are important parts of rehabilitative care. By implementing these treatment aspects in cardiac rehabilitation, ensuring the patient’s functional independence becomes a simple task.

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A Brief Glimpse of Speech Therapy & Rehabilitation for Stroke Patients

Stroke attack occurs when a clot obstructs the blood flow to the brain. This can result in problems like swallowing and communication which are some of the common effects, after a stroke. In such cases, undergoing a dedicated Speech and Language therapy program will be beneficial for you. Therapists will first assess the difficulties you are facing and then proceed with the rehabilitation program. These specialists understand that ineffective communication after a stroke becomes a hindrance for you. Here are some of the issues which you should be aware of –
• Choking or coughing sensation while eating or drinking
• Speaking jumbled sentences or pronouncing certain words incorrectly
• Difficulty in forming speech and words due to the weakened mouth muscles
• Problems in understanding languages
Speech and language therapy is an integral part of stroke rehabilitation. Working with trained experts will help patients in regaining lost skills which were affected due to stroke. Assessing your strengths, weaknesses and personal goals will aid in shaping the speech rehabilitation process. The therapy will enable you in learning and improving your speech skills.
Speech pathologists utilize variety of tools and methods to help you in regaining your communication skills. They use pictures and notebooks so that you can relearn the aspects of speech. The rehab program also includes several computer programs which aid you in forming sentences. To improve the patient’s understanding of language, therapists will focus on the following aspects –
a) Encouraging patients for participating in group therapy sessions. This enables improvement of conversational skills.
b) Improving speech production which results from weakening of muscles. Therapists design special strategies which help in making speech considerably intelligible.
c) Therapists also evaluate your swallowing function and suggest techniques which will help you with the same. These include changes in diet and food habits.
The primary aim of therapy is to help you in recovering your speech and to help you in finding alternative methods for communicating. Some of these alternatives may include writing, hand gestures, drawing or communication charts.
Familial support is another essential part of speech therapy and rehabilitation. With the support of the caregivers and your family, you can take the first step towards recovery from the disabilities hindering your communication skills.

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