Aphasia after a Stroke

Senior Care in Smithtown NY

Aphasia affects approximately ¼ of all stroke survivors. It is caused by damage to the brain and results in the loss of ability to understand or express speech. Its manifestation and affects are Senior-Care-in-Smithtown-NYdetermined by the extent of the damage and which part of the brain has been injured. Most commonly, injury to the left half of the brain leads to difficulty in speaking, listening, reading or writing, but the intelligence is not affected. Those with damage to the front of the brain have choppy speech but fairly good understanding. Those with damage to the back of the brain usually have less understanding but more fluent speech.


Other symptoms your parent may exhibit:

  • They have a hard time coming up with the words they want to use
  • They interchange incorrect words.
  • They have difficulty forming sentences.
  • They have difficulty understanding the spoken word.
  • Reading and spelling may become hard and frustrating.



A speech-language therapist can help your parent improve language skills affected by brain damage. They work on stimulating specific speaking, listening, reading and writing skills.


Communication Tips

  • Make sure you have your parent’s attention before speaking.
  • Turn off the TV and radio to minimize background noise which can be a distraction.
  • Keep sentences simple and talk slowly.
  • Don’t interrupt them and allow them to finish sentences even if it takes time for them to search for words.
  • Consider trying writing and drawing as forms of communication.
  • Use questions that require a “yes” or “no” as answers.
  • Praise your parent’s attempts to communicate.


Home Therapies

The brain is a remarkable organ and has the ability to form new pathways. This means that improvement is possible years after the damage has occurred. Therapy conducted at home can help this process. Computer programs offer a “virtual therapist” that your parent can work with. These are programmed by their therapist and work with repetition. Vast, by Speak in Motion, shows a close up of a mouth in order to help your parent practice specific words and phrases. Several Apps are valuable such as Language Therapy and Virtual Speech Center. These include lessons in reading, writing and comprehension.

With all the technological advances, it’s still true that you, as the family caregiver, and other family and friends can strongly impact your parent’s healing process. Working with them on words, phrases and writing is vital. Receiving encouragement and praise helps them continue with the process when the prospect of giving up seems the easy road to take.


Senior Care Providers

If it’s hard to find time to work with your parent in the midst of all the other tasks that need to be completed, consider obtaining the aid of a senior care provider. They have cared for many seniors that have been left with aphasia after a stroke. In addition to working with your parent, they can help you with the daily activities of life so that you have time to rejuvenate and replenish and care for yourself.


If you or an aging loved one are considering senior care in Smithtown, NY, please contact the caring staff at Family First Home Companions. Serving all of Long Island. Call today: (631) 319-3961


Jennifer Benjamin
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