THE Stroke Association has launched an awareness campaign called Feeling Overwhelmed about the emotional impact of a stroke on survivors
THE Stroke Association has launched an awareness campaign called Feeling Overwhelmed about the emotional impact of a stroke on survivors and their families.
It carried out a survey of more than 2,700 people which showed the psychological effects can be as damaging as the physical problems.
In the 30 to 59 age group, high levels of anxiety were noted by 76 per cent of respondents, depression by 69 per cent and fear by 55 per cent.Other findings included:
* Just two in 10 stroke survivors said they were given information, advice and support on coping with the emotional aspects of a stroke.
* Almost two-thirds agreed or strongly agreed that their emotional needs were not looked after as well as their physical needs.
* Sixty-three per cent said their greatest fear was having another stroke and almost half reported a lack of motivation or feeling angry.
* Nearly half said their relationships or contact with friends and families had been put under strain.
* Two-thirds of carers said they had experienced difficulties in their personal relationships as a result of a stroke. Of these, one in 10 had broken up with their partner or had considered doing so.
The association says: “A stroke is a sudden, life-changing event and survivors grieve for the life and identity they have lost so quickly and unexpectedly.
“They can feel frustrated and angry at being unable to carry out the simple, everyday tasks they used to take for granted. Anxiety and depression can also result from the damage caused by the stroke itself.
“Carers are suffering too and are often left to cope alone.”