Although the UK is still on lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are still showing our support for Make May Purple, the annual stroke awareness campaign.
A stroke can happen at any time, affecting anyone at any age. This past month, we have been sharing information and advice with you about what a stroke is and how you can spot the signs with the FAST test.
Stroke survivors are considered high risk to the pandemic, with a greater risk of getting complications such as pneumonia if they are COVID-19 positive. It is more important than ever to stay at home to reduce the risk of infection, which is also known as shielding. Further information about shielding can be found here.
During the lockdown, you may have decided to move a relative who has had a stroke in with you. Remember there will be an emotional and mental impact from the stroke, no matter how long after it happened, and they will also be dealing with the uncertainty of the pandemic. Ensure you are talking about how you are both feeling, but also give each other space when needed.
Rehabilitation therapies may not be accessible at the moment, but the specialists will be able to set up a care plan to help practice from home. Therapies such as physiotherapy, speech and language, dieticians, psychological and occupational therapy are still important to continue from home, so to not lose any progress with rehabilitation. Keep in contact with the specialists and make notes of any improvements or changes.
You should also remember that help is still available to anyone who has suffered a stroke and their loved ones. The Stroke Association website provides contact information for various charities and organizations.
If a loved one who has previously had a stroke is staying within their own home during the lockdown, you might be worried about their safety during this uncertain time. Keep in regular contact with them, either on the phone or through a video call, to help prevent loneliness and for your reassurance. Offer to collect any essential items they may need and add it to your shopping trip, so they don’t have to unnecessarily leave the house. If they have a carer visiting regularly, you could be in contact with them to schedule days to drop off shopping and other essential items.
May has been dedicated to Stroke awareness for many years, with charities, organizations and individuals across the UK fundraising to support people affected by a stroke. However, with the COVID-19 pandemic, the usual activities and events won’t be going ahead, but fundraising can still be done at home.
The Stroke Association has suggested a few activities to help boost awareness of Make May Purple:
- Host a virtual quiz or house-party with family, friends or colleagues. You can download a quiz from the Stroke Association website here.
- Wear purple and share your picture on social media, tagging it with #MakeMayPurple
- Create purple crafts to display in the window
- Bake up a storm with purple themes treats
- Get active by completing a marathon in your garden or a sponsored bike ride from a stationary exercise bike in your kitchen.
Funds raised for the Stroke Association will go on to support vital research, help continue services to ensure stroke survivors have the care they need and to Life After Stroke Grants to financially support survivors during hardships. To finds out more about the Stroke Association, please click here.
Heritage Healthcare Wakefield provides expert care and support to help stroke survivors remain living at home for longer. Throughout the COVD-19 pandemic, our team are continuing to support vulnerable people within their homes, ensuring they are taking every precaution to stop the spread of the virus.