The National Stroke Association says strokes are one of the leading causes of long-term adult disability, affecting approximately 795,000 people each year in the United States. Many of these people who suffer from a stroke, will need long-term nursing home care while others may be able to stay in their own homes with care or in an assisted living. Still, others may have a full recovery although they are at risk for a second more severe stroke.
Strokes can be treated and with good health habits and regular check-ups you can reduce your chance of having a stroke. Mayo Clinic says to watch for these signs and symptoms for you and those you love:
- Trouble with speaking and understanding. You may experience confusion. You may slur your words or have difficulty understanding speech.
- Paralysis or numbness of the face, arm or leg. You may develop sudden numbness, weakness or paralysis in your face, arm or leg, especially on one side of your body. Try to raise both your arms over your head at the same time. If one arm begins to fall, you may be having a stroke. Similarly, one side of your mouth may droop when you try to smile.
- Trouble with seeing in one or both eyes. You may suddenly have blurred or blackened vision in one or both eyes, or you may see double.
- Headache. A sudden, severe headache, which may be accompanied by vomiting, dizziness or altered consciousness, may indicate you're having a stroke.
- Trouble with walking. You may stumble or experience sudden dizziness, loss of balance or loss of coordination.
A stroke occurs when the blood supply to your brain is interrupted or reduced. This deprives your brain of oxygen and nutrients, which can cause your brain cells to die.
A stroke may be caused by a blocked artery (ischemic stroke) or the leaking or bursting of a blood vessel (hemorrhagic stroke). Some people may experience only a temporary disruption of blood flow to their brain (transient ischemic attack, or TIA).
Learn about the types of strokes and the risk factors from the Mayo Clinic:
Northwestern Medicine says recovery from a stroke may take weeks, months or even years. Some patients may have lifelong disabilities, while others may recover completely. For all patients, your stroke recovery process involves making changes in the physical, social and emotional aspects of your life. These lifestyle changes can help to prevent additional strokes and facilitate lifelong recovery.
Statistics show that following stroke:
10 percent of patients recover almost completely
25 percent of patients recover with only minor impairments
40 percent of patients experience moderate-to-severe impairments that require special care
10 percent of patients require long-term care
15 percent of patients die shortly after
Stroke victims often experience an immediate deterioration in their ability to think and reason. This memory loss often will require the person to need supervision in a memory care facility, assisted living facility or nursing home even if there are few if any physical problems caused by the stroke.
Strokes are just another issue which comes with aging. While strokes and TIA’s do occur at all ages the risk increases with age. This is another reason an advance plan to address the financial costs and burdens of aging is essential to a successful future retirement. The cost of long-term care is not paid for by health insurance or Medicare(other than 100 days of skilled care services). This means you should safeguard your 401(k) and other assets from the consequences of long-term care.
Long-Term Care will impact you, your family, your savings and your lifestyle. Affordable LTC insurance will provide the tax-free money and services so you can have a choice of the quality care you desire in the setting you and your family will prefer. You can’t wait until a health event like a stroke or other accident or aging issue occurs. That places you and your family into crisis management which limits your options and costs you a lot of money. Act before you retire for the most affordable options.